You are so little. And so are your worries. I hope to keep it that way.
I know my patience is thinner and my fuse is shorter lately. By early afternoon, my requests for quiet or calm come through knitted eyebrows and gritted teeth behind my computer glow. I can do better. I will do better.
Thank you for being so forgiving the past few days.
So far, I’ve packed up my desk and looked at it, wondering when I would be sitting at it again. I’ve gotten off my bike at the gym and put down my weights with tears in my eyes, wondering when I would see them again. I know you miss the gym play center and pool, too. You ask to go every day.
You got off the slide last week, neither of us knowing it would be the last time you slid down it for a while. Soon you may even wave goodbye to your teachers and friends, and I can’t tell you when you will see them again either. We miss our routines and I don’t know when we will get them back.
What I can tell you is you will see me every day. And I find deep gratitude in knowing you’re one thing that I won’t have to wonder when I will see again.
Figuring out working from home with you is something I need more gratitude for, too. It means I still have a paycheck. Although we don’t know how long it will be until your first-responder daddy has mandatory overtime, we at least know he still has his job. He will show up every shift, ready to help where he is needed. We will miss him when he’s gone, as always, but we know when we will see him again too. We are thankful he is healthy.
Your dogs are still here to greet you every morning for you to hug while you giggle and say, “I love my puppies.” We will still eat breakfast and lunch and dinner together because there is food in the fridge. You will have water in your cup because the faucet still works. We will watch Frozen 2 until the TV burns out because the power is still on.
We will miss birthday parties and time with loved ones. This period comes with sacrifice for many, all in varying degrees. I worry all day. I worry if there will be a hospital bed for us when it’s time for your sister to come in a few short months. I worry if my doctor will be healthy enough to be there for me like she was for you.
I worry people aren’t taking the quarantine seriously. I worry about small businesses. I worry about Daddy transporting sick people and bringing it home to us. I worry about our family and friends all over the country. I worry about the elderly and sick.
But right now, it’s just you and me and I can’t help but be thankful for all we do have and know.
I’m not worried at all about the world I brought you into or the world I’m about to bring your sister into. What an incredible opportunity for us to teach you about selflessness, caring for our neighbors and the unity it takes to come together in the spirit of caring for each other!
No matter how badly you want to go to the park or the gym or Target, the answer will be “no.” We will eat at home, no matter how badly you want Chick-fil-A because we are committed to flattening the curve and not infecting others.
When we go to the store, we will only get what we need, no matter who we see needlessly filling their carts. We will help people get things on empty shelves they can’t reach. Daddy will continue to go to work and help the sick, no matter how crazy or scary it gets. We will be creative with our toys and make up new games. We will go for long walks and explore our neighborhood.
We can talk about selflessness, bravery, kindness and gratitude—but now is a prime opportunity to show you, too.
My chest is tight and anxiety is high throughout the day, but my calm comes when bath time is over, your favorite books are read and the lights go out. You snuggle in close and I can smell your lavender shampoo and sweet breath. Your baby sister wriggles between us and I hold you both. In all the uncertainty in our lives, I find my peace here. My constant is you.
As your breathing slows and eyelids flutter, I’m warm with gratitude for our health and slow, intentional time together. Right now, we have everything we could need, and for that I am certain.