Silver Linings

I’m tired of hearing myself complain. There must have been a time in my life when surviving until bedtime wasn’t my daily goal. Mentally healthy people are always preaching things like “smile more” (the most annoying) and “think positive.” Well, I’m a glass-half-empty kind of gal, but it can’t hurt to try, right? So here goes…

This pandemic hasn’t been all bad. My lungs feel stronger, having learned to make do with 50% less oxygen they receive through my mask. My eyes have adapted to the 75% visibility they get without the glasses I can’t wear since my mask fogs them up. But best of all, I spend much less time grooming that I once did. Who needs to wax or bleach their mustache when it never sees the light of day of the eyes of the public? I’m embracing my Frida-look, and I’m not going to lie, stroking my newly-accepted facial hair is very soothing. I never have to worry about having food in my teeth, a concern that once plagued a majority of my social interactions. Nowadays the only physical attribute of mine for people to focus on (on those rare occasions I am close enough to another adult for them to notice) are my thick eyebrows. Luckily for me my eyebrows just happen to be my very best quality, and the one and only part of my body on which I have ever received compliments from strangers. Masks serve another useful purpose – changing diapers has become much less loathsome. If my youngest isn’t potty-trained by the end of this mess, I will store all the masks we’ve acquired by the changing table…

My family has been forced to seek out new outdoor amusement, and we have been exploring far more trails that we would have otherwise. This is most enjoyable the 1st 30 seconds of fresh air we breathe in after we step out of the car, before we cover up our faces and before the 2-yr-old inevitably falls into a puddle, gets covered in mud and refuses to move on. But, on another positive note – we have become very strong having to carry her 40 lbs up hills and over uneven terrain. And we have become expert in bribing children with candy in exchange for exercise…

This pandemic has also helped absolve me some of the guilt I used to feel plopping my kids in front of the TV. My proudest pandemic parenting moment was when my 2-yr-old sat through an entire movie for the first time. It took a lot of hard work, but I can now say she’s an expert TV-watcher…

And hey – masks may contribute to chin acne, but who would ever know?

Published by imworriedmytherapisthatesme

I'm a history-PhD-turned-stay-at-home-mom of three. When I'm not microwaving Trader Joe's meals for my kids, breaking up fights and wiping butts, I like to paint and write. To cope with the endless hours I'm spending with my son doing virtual school, I've abandoned my gouache paints for the more portable, less messy tried but true, paper and ink. While he learns to read to 20 floating heads on his screen, I sit on a tiny chair, at a tiny table pretending to be a productive adult.

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