The school year has begun for some students, while many begin in the coming weeks. Typically, during this time, we are complaining about the long school supply lists, and thinking about returning to our routine with sports and activities.
However, this year we are taking a ride on the road less traveled.
Yesterday, I took my grandmother to the doctor and to my surprise there were construction cones, paired with a sign that said “Ramp Closed.” I immediately sighed because now I’m forced to take a longer route, that would steer me out of the direction I had planned to go.
The creation of a plan can be beautifully exciting OR, it can be 2020, a roadmap full of construction. The traffic is slow, ramps are closed, there are power outages, resources are limited and detours galore. This is exactly how 2020 has felt the past 5 months, and while there has been a mixture of good things that have come out of it, it has been swamped with unfavorable events to say the least.
So, HOW DO WE COPE?
How do we handle a roadmap or plan that feels no longer relevant to our lives? I have concluded we must take the long way home! It's not the most attractive option, especially when you are trying to reach your destination, but it is a foolproof way, sometimes, to strategize life. Let’s talk through this for a moment:
Caution! Slippery Conditions Ahead: This is helpful because we are given a fair warning. This is a great time for us to consider how we can either bypass the traffic (our plans) or take the conditions for what they are, and drive slowly. I know we are feeling completely thrown into a sea with no safety vests, but we have been warned, and we know what we can do to help the situation. We don’t have all the answers, but we have been given tools to assist us. Let’s start to use our toolbox the best we can to get us where we want to go!
Ramp Closed: This feels like a dagger to the agenda! We had planned to be somewhere and arrive at a certain time, but due to “Slippery Conditions” we are now forced to create a new plan to get us where we are trying to go. Consider how you maneuver some areas of your life around to create a new mosaic. This is an opportunity to be creative or strategize life's circumstances and situations based on where you are now.
Lane Closures: This suggests we are forced to move at the pace of a sloth. We have to accept we will NOT arrive to “said place (goal)” as we had originally planned. This is how the beginning of the school year may feel for many families, heck, potentially all families! Activities have been halted for our children until the spring, or some have a schedule that is polar opposite than what we are used to. I must be honest, slowing down the pace, for me has been mentally and physically rewarding. Many of us are on the run so much that we neglect to rest and take care of ourselves. Use this time to get back to indulging in some of the simplest things that you feel nurture your mental health and relationships.
Mama's, I am not an Oracle, by any stretch of the imagination, and I am in the trenches with you, but I do believe my mindset can shape how my children approach the changes that are occurring around us and within us. Our children are indeed resilient BUT, if we are not modeling behavior that is hopeful, we actually can indirectly nurture feelings of anxiousness.
Whether you have opted in - classroom, virtual, hybrid or forced into one over the other, just know you are making a decision that will give you peace and provide the level of comfort you need to cope with the changes in the construction of your plan.
WE are in this together, its not easy, but boy will we all have some stories to tell!