Being a mother isn’t a job. It’s who someone is.
We’re coming off “snowmageddon 2021” here is Texas, and boy has it been an unexpected week. A week that brought so much uncertainty into all of our lives, from basic needs like heat, water, electricity not being met to schools and workplaces being such down. This week was also re-traumatizing in a lot of ways after coming off of a year of uncertainty with the COVID-19 pandemic.
There were so many feelings that came up for me and others around this unexpected week: frustration, anger, gratitude, sadness, grief, anxiety, agitation, restlessness, joy, irritation, hopelessness, hopefulness and so many more. Often it depended on the hour as to what feelings were actually present. One of the biggest issues, as a planner, was not knowing what was going to happen next. It was also hard to embrace that this wasn’t the week I wanted or expected.
When survival mode shows up, all plans go out the window. Instead of healthy eating, comfort food sounded much better. Exercise plans became snuggling under a bunch of blankets plans. Process time like therapy became connecting with family around how cold it was in the house time.
I hope we can all look back on this unprecedented time through the lens of compassion for others and self-compassion for ourselves, as we were all doing the best we could during such a hard time.
What I did notice is that it was helpful to me to see this unexpected week through the eyes of my kids, as they saw this week so differently than I did:
- The joy around having an unexpected week off of school.
- The fun surrounding their first snow day ever.
- The adventure of sledding in our neighborhood.
- The gratitude toward the neighbors lending their sled.
- The happiness after hours of playtime outside with friends.
- The wonder and curiosity of it all.
- Staying in the moment and embracing what was right in front of them.
- The humor around everyone jumping up to plug in electronics the rare times the electricity did come back on.
Their perspective did help me to (mostly) keep a positive attitude around the forced staycation that unexpectedly showed up. I tried to add in some self-care where I could with reading, meditating and journaling. I also tried to let the rest of my plans for the week go, to simply move forward into this upcoming week, and not get caught up in the setbacks from the week before. I’m also trying to see it all as yet another one of life’s big adventures, one that we’ll be talking about for years to come!