Right now, I’m the dishwasher, 1/2 the cook, laundry coordinator, and etc.
Although I don’t particularly enjoy these tasks, they fill some unknowable need – stability. The dishes in particular provide a rhythm to the day. After every meal comes the cleanup. I rely on that rhythm to mark the day.
My wife has taken to doing a morning calendar routine with the small ones. Things like what day it is, what month, what season, what the weather is like. It only takes five minutes, but I think it grounds all of us in the present day. Rather than what could become dangerously out of control numbness.
Today I took the trash and recycling down to the curb. Because it’s Sunday evening and the trucks come by Monday mornings.
What unnoticed, unappreciated rhythm these mundanities give us.
Throw in with the school
We made some cutout worksheets for the preschool today. A did the drawing and I did the computer stuff – scanning and minor graphics work. They turned out pretty nice. I’m encouraging her to post them on teachers pay teachers or something.
The preschool is having more success with the distance learning than the local school district is. We only have one half-hour call a week though, so I expect that’s reasonable.
It’s a coop preschool, so we’ve been used to being involved with it for a couple of years now, and while this sudden shift has been unsettling, I feel like we’ve been lucky to have the school experience we’ve had.
What to tell the kids
What do you tell the little ones when they can’t go to Grandma’s house or Nana’s house? That they can’t see their friends? That they aren’t allowed to play with the girls next door they’ve always played with? That they cannot leave the house for a few months?
I don’t have a good answer. If you do, please feel free to offer suggestions.
We’ve been telling our kids that the virus is out there, lots of people have gotten sick, and it’s really dangerous.
It’s funny, the older one went through a phase a few months ago where we watched all of the Kahn Academy viral microbiology videos. Here’s an example:
We got to there by starting with Oceanic Microbes. He’s fascinated and always wants to learn more, so we go to DNA, he asks about germs (have to explain why we need to clean his cuts and scrapes), and boom, we’re watching MCAT prep videos about viruses.
In some ways We’re lucky in a lot of ways. Having the little ones means we have to keep a schedule. Every day, whether or not we want to. Weekends are a little more relaxed, but yeah, we mark time by meals. Cleanup, nap time, play time. Those go for all of us.
The activities keep the rhythm, and as long as we have the rhythm, we can keep moving forward.