Which week of this quarantine are we on again? I think we are about to wrap up week 4 “officially,” but I know for sure that I haven’t left my house or even been in my car in a full month. I know we’re all doing this for a good reason, but I also know that it hasn’t been easy. As a working mom, the challenge of balance is greater than ever before and I have felt like I am failing so many times on so many levels.
I think that, as time has gone on, it has gotten a little easier. Admittedly, we’re incredibly fortunate that our family is healthy, we still have our jobs and we did a decent job preparing for our “stay at home” order and have just about anything we might need. We’re lucky, but things have still been tough some days. I found myself crying about every other day for a couple of weeks and then, when Clint started working at home, we began to establish a routine that helped us. That routine included ways to add joy and happiness to our day. Sure, it also included writing a to-do list for every member of our family on a whiteboard, but we also started to include some of the fun things that made this time easier and happier for all of us.
How to Add Joy to your Day
I should probably say “go outside safely!” but I think we all get the idea that we need to be following the rules laid out by our respective local government. The days where we have been able to get outside for at least a family walk have been our best days. The weather here in Michigan hasn’t been amazing yet, but even if we have to bundle up a bit, we are trying to get out. The kids are used to at least 2 recess breaks a day, so we found that if we got out at least a little that they were happier, better listeners and even went to bed easier at night – and so did we!
The sunshine has been so helpful for all of our moods so we take advantage of it with active breaks like a walk, bike ride or even just sitting on the patio blowing bubbles.
Take a Break
Sometimes work + arguing with one or both kids to do school work + watching too much news has gotten to be so overwhelming that the only option has been to just walk away. I’ve actually really enjoyed meditating as my break (I use Peloton Digital for guided meditations) from things during the day. I really find that if I just step away and do a 5 minute meditation that I’ll feel less anxiety in my chest, will breathe easier and will be able to approach situations more calmly.
Have a Dance Party
In our house this has been a family affair most of the time – especially since the boys discovered music videos on YouTube! I’ve also found that a little dancing has been helpful for me to just shake out the anxiety, so I have taken a few cardio dance classes over the last couple of weeks. I have done Define Beat online and the Peloton Cardio Dance classes (which are new to the platform!).
We’re all living that Zoom life right now, right? It’s hard to be disconnected from friends and family like this. I love the idea of Zoom happy hours and FaceTime sessions with everyone – the kids definitely show off their wackiness once we get on FaceTime. It’s also been good for me to hop on Instagram and leave some comments, or DM people about their stories to just say
Do One Thing You Love
This is meant to be just something little that you can do at home that makes you happy. For me this has been things as minor as painting my toenails, working on a section of my embroidery project or even just making cookies with the boys. For me, writing a blog post is something I love to do and that is soothing and distracting, so I’m going to be trying to do more of it over the coming weeks.
I am going to do more of this! My friend Morgan said on her Instagram story that she no longer believes in saving a piece of clothing for a special occasion. TODAY is an occasion if you make it one, even if you aren’t leaving your house. I’ve been doing a little bit of spring shopping lately so next week I may start to share how I’m trying to be a little more stylish at home. But either way, getting dressed sets you up for the kind of day you want to have and even it’s adding earrings or putting on jeans instead of leggings, it could be one little thing that changes the course of your day!