Dear Kids - COVID-19 Social Distancing Week 2 Wrap Up

Dear Kids,

It’s a weird time. I keep thinking about how this will be in your history books when you grow up, but you won’t even remember it. You will read about the millions of lives that were affected, but those books won’t have our story. So here it is, a recap of week 2, the ups and the downs.

We have one more week under our belts, we’re one step closer to the finish line. Another week of social distancing with Mom and Dad playing the roles of full time child care providers, fight arbitrators and part-time homeschoolers. Mom was also full time chef. On Sunday we found out the finish line has been moved to April 30th (for now), another entire month! But, look, it’s a good thing that social distancing has been extended. This will end up saving countless lives. I’ll be honest with you guys, though. It’s been a struggle to maintain a positive perspective 100% of the time. I love you both and Daddy so much, but I’m not built to be a stay at home mom. Nor am I built for this constant, can’t escape you contact. Sorry not sorry, if that's harsh. It's the truth. I know we’re lucky to have this time together. We’ll never get it again. At this very moment, there are doctors and nurses on the front lines of this epidemic isolating themselves from their families for fear of spreading the virus. They don’t get to kiss and hug their kids good night. That’s a really sobering thought, probably one you won’t be able to empathize with until you have kids of your own. I'm trying to remind myself of this everyday.

So it’s important to have perspective and not lose sight of the fact that we are healthy and safe at home. But that doesn’t mean we aren’t human. I felt anxious and sad last week. I had moments of slippage. By Wednesday (even though I thought it was Tuesday), I noticed a significant change in mood that carried into Thursday. I found myself in a fog, disengaged, moody and low in energy. It was a combination of lack of sleep (both of you are now waking up in the middle of the night!), lack of personal space, the two of you fighting, the tantrums and the constant “Mommy, I’m still hungry” (despite feeding you ALL DAY LONG). In addition, I also know that I’m struggling with a significant part of my identity being put on the back burner with work on hold. I’m anxious about how long the stores will remain closed. We were told about a further extended closure date on Thursday night. What the future of retail will even be when this is all over? What will this mean for my career in retail in the long run? Some heavy stuff mixed in there amongst the normal parenting woes. On top of this, Friday was tough for me. We decided to drop off a box of masks at PoPo’s house since both she and Tim are still going in and out of the house daily. Tim continues to work his job at UPS while PoPo is Great Grandma’s primary care taker. We are worried about your grandparents since they are an at-risk group. It was a different visit than you’re used. One where I wouldn’t let you out of the car, one where you couldn’t understand why you couldn't hug your Gung Gung. Miles, you writhed in your car seat screaming that you wanted to go inside, that you wanted to get out. It broke my heart that this is the new normal.

But we had good times too. By Thursday afternoon, I realized the decline in happiness also coincided with a decline in wine consumption. This was rectified immediately. I'm happy to report the rest of the week noticeably improved. The themes from last week have continued. We’re still connecting with friends and family daily. One night, Dad and Mom did a group meet up on House Party. As a family, we dabbled in Tik Tok like nearly everyone else who is going out of their minds. One of my favorite highlights from the week has been cooking with you, Tess. I love that you enjoy it. It's a confidence builder, a way to home school practically and practice your Chinese. This week you helped make an East meets West dinner of Mapo Tofu Tater Tots inspired by a local SGV cafe, Bopomofo. You also helped make an amazing Sweet Potato Casserole (because what month is it anyway?) and Cranberry Cherry Breakfast Muffins. We had an awesome two hours at the Arboretum on Sunday, enjoying the fresh air, finding ducks, squirrels, turtles and fish. At the end of our stay, we competed in a foot race where Tess and I smoked Daddy and Miles. And you both blissfully napped all afternoon long, really the best gift you could have given us. We also got the best news on Friday. Tess got into her Mandarin immersion elementary school for Kinder via the second lottery! It’s a huge source of relief and also a reminder that not everything is being put on hold. We're going to get through this, kids! Until next week!