My kids went back to school full-time this week. It’s been exactly one year and two weeks since our schools were closed for Covid-19 precautions. We thought it would only last a brief moment in time but it became an everyday reality for over 365 of them.
We’re four days into this first week back, and I’m already reflecting and wondering how the hell we survived? The truth is, we barely did.
We are only in the beginning stages of this healing process. I’m not sure how long it will take to recover fully, but I’m starting to unpack the past year and see it for what it was; a shitshow for our mental health.
Up until this week we were on a hybrid program. We homeschooled Mon-Weds, and they were in the building with ~50% capacity on Thursday and Friday. If you’re counting, 3 out of 5 days of school rested solely on our shoulders.
We had no teacher-lead Zooms on those days. No in-home tutors. No nannies — no outside resources whatsoever. And people still wonder why I felt it was necessary to leave a salaried position?
Not even a week removed and I’m already wondering how we made it happen, and I suspect we’ll ask ourselves that for the rest of our lives.
As I begin to process, I’m both relieved and anxious. Relief is settling in because I can take the next steps to figure out where my career and future are heading. I’ve regained some independence that I desperately missed. But with that comes residual anxiety as I come to terms with the fact that I have 35+ hours of free time during the week. Up until now I was known as a teacher, referee, wrestling buddy, maid, snack chef, freelancer, and just plain old mom and wife.
Once again I find myself on a journey to rediscover who I am and what my daily passions and purpose are. What a rollercoaster of emotions this past year has been!
Still, the lessons I take with me from this period in time are important ones I hope never to forget:
Family first. Always.
You’re more than your job title.
Make time for yourself. Even if it’s just 20 minutes a day, it’s crucial.
Make the experiences happen. Book the vacation, buy the concert tickets, hit up the happy hour.
Here's to our worlds beginning to reopen with healthier standards, clear perspectives, and healing.