Corona Virus Quarantine Day #41: April 29, 2020
My guest writer today is my sweet, smart and beautiful 8-year-old daughter Fiona Bell Dorsey.
We started out our day with breakfast then we went to school. I did my specialty project today on New York. I really want to go there it looks so fun. Hopefully when this is over we can go there someday.
I also went on a virtual field trip today to the Holy Land. It is where Jesus was and it looks fun. I’d like to go there too!
After school I went outside to explore with Fletcher. I found a crane, two blue jays and two cardinals. They have been hanging around our house lately. Then we came inside for lunch.
I played monopoly with my Gaga today and surprisingly she won. I usually beat her in games, especially Skip Bo. Then I played outside with GiGi and rode on my roller blades.
We finished watching Dumbo today. It’s totally awesome. My favorite part of the movie is when Dumbo flew at the end away from the bad guy. We are going to watch Lady and the Tramp next. We have never seen it.
Today was a good day. Day 41 of the corona virus seems crazy but it kinda seems like it’s been longer, like a year maybe. The corona virus is fun in some ways and bad in other ways. It’s fun because I get to spend so much time with my family, more than before. The bad part is I can’t see my friends, or my teachers and I miss sports. It’s also bad because it can kill people.
I miss my friends and teacher, and sports most at this time. Today I am thankful for my Gaga.
Anyone have a kid cry for no reason in the last 41 days? Yeah…me too! It makes you wonder how this whole corona virus quarantine is impacting our kids internally. I know I see it on the faces of my big kids when we meet via zoom and they are 15 and 16 years old! The pressure to be “fine” or “ok” or even “great” during this time is high because ultimately most of us are healthy so what can we really complain about in contrast with people losing their lives.
We adults have different stresses than the kids of course…our job security, finances, working from home and schooling our kids…legit stresses. But I’d argue the stresses of the youngest among us are harder to identify.
Why did Cooper break down in tears today during math (which he was doing well at), during our time in the barn while playing volleyball (even though again, he was doing well) and again in the house. He turned down offers to from all of his siblings to play…weird, because of anyone in the house he’s always game for whatever someone suggests.
Truth be told, he’s not the first one to have a day like this. Fletcher’s had the most of the five kids, but I’ll chalk that up to his age and in the recent weeks he’s really turned a corner and is accepting this no more school I’m at home all the time thing. Finley’s had a few days too, yet in a different way. Ellen has as well, she’s sensitive to making mistakes whether it be in school or in a game we are playing. Fiona gets crabby and can’t explain why.
Our kids have not left the house since March 13th. They have not seen friends, they have not played organized sports, they’ve not eaten in a restaurant (something I have learned during this time they really love…we have that in common) and, of course, they have not attended school in a traditional sense. The world as they know it has completely changed. While I’d argue they have really enjoyed all this extra time to play and explore together they also feel a sense of uncertainty that they aren’t emotionally mature enough to explain or understand…so the off day when they are extra emotional or crabby…totally normal!
Even the teenagers I meet with each day don’t really know how to express their feelings properly…hell…we adults struggle at times…so how can we expect a small child to do so?
I know that I get frustrated with the kids when they act like this. Why are you crying? Don’t be so crabby! What is wrong? Talk to me, please!
The trouble is…they don’t know why they are crying. They don’t know why they are extra sassy or short fused on any given day. What they do know is that they don’t understand it and that frustrates them. So our frustration definitely doesn’t help the situation.
So today I had to remind myself of that. I feel like I’m a pretty patient person, especially when it comes to kids. But at times during this stay at home order I have not been as patient as I’d like…with the kids or myself.
So if your kids are like mine and have had emotional days…know you (and they) are not alone.
I am praying for you and all of our kids who have lost so much. They’ve lost things you and I can no longer relate to losing, like recess and school lunches and the funnies that happen in a school day. Our struggles, stresses and worries are different, some would say bigger. I’d argue that the kids don’t know the difference. To them, the frustration or sadness they may feel on a random Wednesday morning is hard to identify and unclear.
Uncertainty is the word I would best use to describe this entire situation. We are uncertain of what Covid-19 can really do, we are uncertain of when this will end, we are uncertain of whether or not it will come back…we can’t explain why we have great days during this quarantine and why we have bad ones.
I know that my heart broke for that sweet boy today when he hugged me and couldn’t explain why he was sad. I also know that when I suggested we sit and read the book we are reading together in the middle of the afternoon that his mood immediately improved. He sat next to me, snuggled in and we read a book about a subject matter (WWII) that we both love…and his heart was mended. He felt better and he was my sweet, happy go lucky Cooper again.
So a small reminder that it’s the little things we do that make this all ok for them. We remind them in how we act and behave and how we respond to them when they have a bad day. We need to remind them that it’s ok to have a bad day…but it isn’t ok for it to shut us down.
I may never know why he was so upset today or why Finley was so grouchy the day before or why any of them have had the “off” days they’ve had in the last 41…but I know from my experience that distracting them from their worries is a good way to get them back on track! Hikes, cooking, reading books, playing games, riding bikes, painting or sports…whatever their thing is, that time we give them is precious and we will never regret giving it to them.
To lighten this somber mood and bring a little comedic relief…I am going to share with you some of my observations about being quarantined with small children.
- To small children…wearing shoes outside on a nice day is comparable to receiving a death sentence.
- If you have just explained in excruciating detail why something must be done or what you are doing…be prepared in 2.5 seconds for someone to ask you that same exact question again. Then, wait 5 more seconds…You’ll be asked a 3rd
- Nothing gets a small boy laughing like talk of butts or a fart. Gross…but true.
I provide you with…proof! He talked about how this thing “farted” all day, then proceeded to laugh at how hilarious he is!
- Apparently asking kids to get the toothpaste they spit out of their mouth into the flowing water in the actual sink is a HUGE ask! Meaning it won’t happen. It’s impossible. But if you are looking for a nice toothpaste wall paper…they got you covered.
- On an important call? Guess what…someone needs you right that second and no one else is available to help them. Also, it should be mentioned whatever they need is not critical.
- When putting shoes on a small child you point to the foot you need for the shoe you are holding…be prepared for them to lift up the wrong foot…every. single. time.
- When it’s time for lights out, meaning Mommy’s fried and cannot answer the question “What are we going to do tomorrow” for the 10th time…inevitably minutes after you leave and think it’s quiet time…a small human will arrive in your room with 5 more questions they just thought of!
- Need to go the bathroom? Expect company!
Hope these made you laugh. Also…these are all true.