Have animals been helping comfort you and your family during the pandemic?
Each day when I’m out in the neighborhood, particularly when I’m with my youngest son, we decide how successful our walk is by how many animals we see — cats and bunnies get extra points as we see then more rarely than other animals. Seeing these animals — neighbors walking their dogs, squirrels running between yards and trees, crows scouting out yards for food, bees buzzing, snails making their slow pilgrimage to yummy yards, and hearing birds sing — calms me. It brings happiness to my son. It’s always a topic when we are outside.
I see stuffed animals in windows, to bring younger children joy, and give them something to count while they are out in about. Animals — real or a toy — seem to have an even greater importance to so many of us during this time. I’ve always loved animals, but appreciate them even more now.
We all need something that helps us get through our days. The love of our family goes far, but animals just being (their normal animal selves) gives me a needed boost.
What is giving you and your child comfort (or an extra boost) during your days?
I will be taking next week off to celebrate the Memorial Day weekend and will be back in June.
This year Mother’s Day will be different. Many of us are still at home, sheltering in place, wearing face masks when we venture out, and are social distancing to keep ourselves and others safe.
I normally crave time to myself on Mother’s Day to relax and rest — maybe even take in a movie if I’m feeling adventurous. We will all be home together this year with no opportunity to venture out much past our neighborhood and that’s okay. The benefits of being at home together has taken on new meaning for us — we seem to have a renewed appreciation for one another. Not having to run around to get kids here or there, or myself here or there, and being overloaded with things to do has waned. The chaos of my pre-COVID-19 life has settled into a more peaceful existence. I used to yearn for the peace I have now and saw Mother’s Day as my opportunity to achieve it — but this year the gift of peace came unexpectedly, and I plan to relish it for as long as it lasts.
This Mother’s Day, I will do what I’ve been doing with my family since the pandemic arrived — be together — oh, and I might rent a movie we can all watch together.