This is my reality
Updated: Dec 17, 2020
I can’t throw myself on the ground and scream, can I? I have to be the adult in the room. Sometimes, I think ‘just this once, let me not be the one who has to solve this.’ It would be nice to be able to just let that be it. And, because this is what our normal is right now, every single day feels exactly the same as the last one. And, already, I know what tomorrow will be like. And the next day. And the one after that, too. Every.single.day.
Every day, the kids and I get up, eat breakfast, and then we sit at our respective desks, and attend class. Or run through the day's list of work tasks. Every day, the same thing. And, because this move could not possibly have more complications, our HHE has not yet arrived, so we are short desks in the house. This was fine when the boys were still going to school every other week. But with all of us home, and all of us requiring our own individual workspaces, it really is important to have a dedicated space to be productive. I gave the desk GSO provided us in the house to my middle son because the workspace I fashioned for him out of the table cover and two coffee tables was just not doing it. His slide in the distance learning classes was not completely apparent until it really was, and then we were in triage mode. My desk - or my using the desk - was a casualty.
Every day, hubby joins us for breakfast, dons his face mask and heads out the door, waving goodbye to the rest of us. His job is Mission Critical, and infinitely easier to do in person at the office. Mine is not, and I can be just as effective at home. This means, though, that I do not get to hang out with anyone other than my children. All.day.long.Every.single.day. Don't get me wrong: I love my boys. LOVE my boys. But my being here means A) I am suddenly 'volunteered' to make lunch for them every day. And B) I am suddenly 'volunteered' to help with every single class when there is a question or a problem. Last week alone, I helped one or the other of them work through making a presentation explaining Pythagorean theorem (having to explain it first so then he could be the one to present it); physics of launching a rocket and calculating velocity and speed and acceleration; the physical parts of the body that benefit from particular exercises as they relate to basketball; and different types and rhyming patterns of poems. So besides the job (which is supposed to be full-time), all of the classroom assistance, breakfast and lunch making, dinner cooking, and laundry detail, our housekeeper is also now quarantining in her home because she was exposed to COVID (her neighbor) so we can add cleaning the house on top of it all. So when the weekend comes, and hubby is too tired to do anything and wants to stay home, just hang out? That is just simply not acceptable. Some weekends, it feels like if I am in the house one more second, I am probably going to explode. That laying down on the floor and screaming I mentioned before? Definitely possible.
This isn't meant to be a list of complaints. We are doing all that we did before and then so much more on top of that. Nobody likes distance learning, least of all the kids but neither do the teachers like it; they signed up to be a classroom teacher not to talk to a screen all day long. It is borderline grueling for all of us to focus our attention and be as on-task as we were way back before.
I miss 'before'. I do, I admit. I miss having a job I fully knew and loved, and being able to send the kids off to school on a reliable bus service to school, and then heading to the office. I miss having a housekeeper who helped keep the house clean and cooked a couple nights per week. I miss being able to go to watch the boys' athletic matches. I miss having a yard. I miss planning trips and going on them. I miss being able to walk around without a mask on. I miss having my favorite grocery store and my reliable fruit and veggie guy. I miss my friends I saw every day at work, and our chats. I miss going to the office. I miss having access to all of my appliances. I miss our regular get-togethers with our neighbors. I miss 'before'.
I know I will like 'after'. I know I will. It just feels like we've been in this holding pattern for months now, and there doesn't seem to be any indication there will be an end. Can we just hurry up and get to 'after' already?
I'm doing my best. I'm doing my best to be patient with the kids, and help them with their classes. I'm doing my best cajoling them off their devices and doing something physical. I'm doing my best to help hubby stay sane and motivated, even when the inevitable hiccups and speed bumps come. I'm doing my best to meet people and settle into life at this post. I'm doing my best to stay motivated and positive for whatever each day bring, especially if there is just a tiny sliver of difference from yesterday's schedule. I'm doing my best to not give in, and throw myself on the ground and scream. I'm sure you are too. Soon enough, we'll be to 'after' and we are all going to be so pleased to be there.