One thing that I think all adults, parents or not, catch onto quickly is pretending that nothing happens during naptime or after bedtime. No, I did not watch a movie without you. No, nobody stopped by for a visit. No, I did not eat an entire package of Oreos. Nothing happened.
My daughter has a book called The Hello Goodbye Window about a little girl going to visit her grandparents and all of the fun things they do. She says that after lunch she goes to take a nap and “nothing happens until I wake up.” I always chuckle at that part thinking of all the times I have pretended that nothing happened while my daughter was sleeping.
I like to think of quarantine a little bit like that. It’s just one very, very, very excruciatingly long nap that we can’t wake up from.
No birthday parties that have been canceled.
No anniversaries not celebrated with a night on the town without kids.
No family and friends moving that we can’t help.
No babies being born that we can’t go snuggle.
No niece and nephew sporting events or plays that we can’t go cheer at.
No first day of preschool that we don’t get to have.
No baptisms postponed.
No playdates missed.
No friends getting married that we can’t give a giant hug to.
No holidays will happen that we can’t be surrounded by our entire family.
No kids growing up and getting older.
Nothing is happening until we wake up.
Alas, we started quarantine with a 1-month-old and 2-year-old. Today, we have an 8-month-old and a 3 and a half-year-old and we are very much still quarantined.
Our son was exactly one month old the day that lockdown orders were issued in Ohio. That day, he was still a mostly bald, sleepy, wrinkly, snuggly, newborn. Today, he’s got a head full of hair, sits up on his own, signs “more” and “milk,” says “dada,” eats solid food, laughs, squeals, and has three teeth (with one more that, Lord willing, will pop through tonight. Please.)
Our 3 and a half-year-old has matured an unbelievable amount and has demonstrated her strong will, resilience and brilliance. I just wish there were more family and friends around to see it. My children are constant reminders that yes, things are happening. They are growing, they are changing and learning about the world around them.
If only we could all just wake up.