Security and Sanity While Sheltering in Place: Part 1
Here we are. At home. Just us. Me, my husband, my kids and my dog. The first few weeks were nover and, while not easy, seemed bearable. However, as we rounded the corner into week 3, it really started to sink in. Not just the uncertainty of when we would be released from this, but, also the smell of a previously potty trained kiddo having frequent accidents, the clingy-ness of two young children, increase in tantrums and the lack of creative and stimulating outlets, for all of us.
Calling on my social emotional background as an MSW. I attacked these issues with some god old fashioned behavior intervention techniques. For me that meant challenging myself to think differently about the situation and to explore my children’s underlying needs leading to such behaviors. Ultimately, it seemed quite clear that they were struggling with this change in routine. While my 3.5 year old actively expressed loving being home because he “could be wits mommy forever,” I knew he was missing his friends and that my generic, we can’t go to school because everyone is sick was no longer cutting it. His, and his younger brother’s relentless desire to be involved in all things mommy were related to his own feelings of uncertainty about the situation as a whole.
Both of my children had been attending childcare full time (aside from the occasional family vacation) since the age of 8 and 10 weeks and at the ripe old ages of 3 and 9 months and 13 months, had really never been out since. While they seemed to be loving the sudden increase in “home days” and increase in attention from their parents, there was no doubt that their small worlds had been literally turned upside down.
Here we still are, in lock down, during week 6 with no deffinitive end in site and here I am filled with questions that lead to ideas and more questions on how to help my children feel secure now while also setting them up to successfully transition back to school in the future, which leads to ideas, then those ideas lead to more questions. Follow along as more of my ideas and attempts unfold in part 2.