Portrait of a Family, 2020

Does any generation escape unscathed?

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School’s out for summer
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Available at Pottery Barn

Speaking of kids, we are failing as parents right now.

That’s hard for me to admit. I pride myself on being an incredible mom — I am an incredible mom. I am relentlessly committed and full of love.

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Photo by Allie on Unsplash

I used to grumble about the morning hustle.

You know what I’m talking about, Mama. The alarm goes off at 4:45 am, and it’s off to the races. You laid out your workout clothes the previous night so you can dress in the dark. Wake. Contacts. Bathroom. Dress. From asleep to on a bike in less than 30 minutes. Sweat it out for 45.

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Photo by Nathan Dumlao on Unsplash
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Photo by Dane Deaner on Unsplash

We are drowning in busy work, home projects, and STUFF.

So much stuff. Clothes, toys, stuffies, blankets. Little pieces of games, materials for science experiments, and craft supplies that are lost, forgotten, or half complete. Saved cards and pictures, bits of nostalgia, and collected treasures are everywhere. Don’t throw it away, Mama! I’ll keep it picked up. Pinky swear.

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Photo by Hello I’m Nik 🎞 on Unsplash

It’s not that they are undisciplined, it’s that they have the discipline of seven-year-olds.

They don’t know they are in the homestretch because their days are blending together and there’s nothing to anticipate.

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Photo by Max Goncharov on Unsplash
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Photo by NeONBRAND on Unsplash

By the way, I think our days of grocery shopping are over.

I don’t miss it one bit, and neither does my family. I don’t mind trying the brands I end up with, not getting some things I ordered, or figuring out how to substitute ingredients. Brand loyalty seems to be a thing of the past, too, a silly little luxury before everything changed.

It’s not about the money.

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Photo by Austin Distel on Unsplash
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Photo by Anastase Maragos on Unsplash

Come on, guys, let’s be on the same team.

Please. If you play that out, in a family of five, like ours, you’ll see how dangerous it can be. I guess it’s one thing if you’re single and you want to take a chance. It’s another if you pass coronavirus to someone not willing to risk it, with compromised immunity, or a family member.

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Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash
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Photo by NeONBRAND on Unsplash

Add it to the freaking list of s-h-i-t that could go wrong.

I have plenty of time for a road trip. Let me just pencil that in. Oh, and we have a woodpecker that is driving us crazy most mornings at 6 am sharp. My husband wants to crawl up on the roof and investigate. Really?

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Photo by Bonnie Kittle on Unsplash

Also, I’m in the middle of a big DIY landscaping project.

I didn’t hire it out because I enjoy the work (mostly) even if it’s kicking my ass right now. We are conserving money, and frankly, I needed the outlet.

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Photo by Eco Warrior Princess on Unsplash

Still, I don’t think we’ve hit rock bottom in the US.

It could get worse before it gets better, and recovery is going to vary wildly depending on your socioeconomic status, and that’s problematic on so many levels. The gap between the haves and have-nots widens again.

How do I take care of my family, run my business, and have any bandwidth left to do anything else?

Yes, something is off for me this May, and when we get out of alignment, that’s when the friction starts, unconsciousness seeps in, and our goals fade into the background. We yell at the children more, get the wine out earlier, and let deadlines slide. I’m paying attention because I don’t want to veer too far off course.

Maybe it’s the quarantine — I feel like I’m suffocating.

Maybe it’s Mother’s Day — this year, it’s just another day, without anywhere to go.

Maybe it’s 45 — have I peaked? I’ve never asked myself that before. Dear God, is this what the decent feel like?

I’m feeling sensitive and restless, and I don’t want to lose my drive or fail my children. I don’t want to absolve them from responsibilities or shield them from real life either. Does any generation escape unscathed?

Mindset is everything.

This May is different.

Maybe it’s the quarantine — I feel the preciousness of life.

We’ve nearly made it through another year of school. This summer is the perfect time to double down on what’s working in my business, to take some things off my plate, and to make room to dive deeply into motherhood. We only get 18 summers with our children, and that means 11 to go. 11!

Maybe it’s Mother’s Day — this year, we’ll celebrate at home.

Just like we did when we had newborn twins or three under three, and were terrified of going to brunch. Too much effort. Did I mention how lucky I am to be a mama?

Maybe it’s 45 — look how far I’ve come.

I’m so grateful for the years, the lessons, and the blessings. I love doing life next to my hubby and friends and look forward to becoming even more during the next 45. I love life; it’s so, so good.

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Photo by Sergei Solo on Unsplash

We aren’t failing our children; we are parenting in a pandemic.

And it’s challenging on many levels. We mess up, but when we do, we get up, dust ourselves off, and forgive each other. We look for the good, and we model resiliency, and we reset our compass.

Written by

Life coach for women. Writer for 29 publications. Happiness, success, productivity, balance, leadership, inspiration. Follow me on Instagram @coachformoms.

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