I have no idea what to write about. Initially, I thought about recycling an old column, but considering how drastically the times have changed over the last few weeks, it just didn’t make sense.
This is such a weird time. According to every news outlet and social media poll, we are in unchartered territory — or waters depending on your geographic location.
Ads for patio furniture, bedding, Easter décor, and magnetic eyelashes (don’t ask) that once littered my Facebook timeline have been replaced with promotions for neoprene face masks, enviro-friendly disinfectant guaranteed to kill the COVID-19 virus, and disaster preparedness kits. I’ve taken quizzes to find out how arrogant I am, what type of mother I am, what ‘90s TV character I am, what state I should live in.
In the beginning, I was excited. Our family desperately needed a reset. We’ve been traveling through life at a speed too fast to enjoy anything. My daily internal dialogue usually began with the words, “If I can just” and ended with something along the lines of “get through this week, this meeting, this workout, this commute, this phone call.” For years, I’ve been getting through everything. So busy focusing on the end of a task, I missed out on everything else.
After my oldest was born, I’d catch myself thinking, “When he starts sitting up or crawling or walking, it will get easier.” When he finished teething or potty training or learning to write his letters, I thought this would make life run smoother. It wasn’t until after he mastered a skill that I would lament how fast he was growing up. I’d make a silent promise to enjoy each stage instead of wishing we could move onto the next one. I broke the promise most of the time.
The only time I slowed down and soaked in all that beautiful baby boy energy was when he got sick. Our days slowed to a glacial pace, and we snuggled and watched “Sesame Street” and napped and ate the best empty calories money could buy.
I repeated this behavior with my youngest.
I had lofty goals when this all started. As a family we would:
• Organize closets.
• Enter receipts from 2019, then turn into our accountant.
• Cook healthy meals.
• Not overeat.
• Learn Italian.
• Exercise daily.
So far, the only thing that we’ve organized is the kitchen junk drawer, I’ve moved the tax receipts from the bookcase to my office chair, we’ve cooked nothing healthy, we’ve eaten all the tier one snacks (twice), missed my daily step goal, and found out I’m most like the ‘90s television character Phoebe Buffay from “Friends” and Jay is most like Tim Taylor from “Home Improvement.” But as a family we’ve also played board games, watched old movies, TikTok’d (is that a verb?), cooked together, and my oldest has even taught me a little Spanish.
Even though I’ll likely come out of this stay at home order/social distancing/toilet paper hoarding time with a few extra (8, so far) pounds and less athletic endurance, I’ve gained a new appreciation for everything we took for granted — ESPECIALLY TOILET PAPER.
Telling Tales is written by Wilson County moms Becky Andrews and Angel Kane. This column is Becky’s.