‘I started to cry. You should never have to sit that far away from your friends.’: Mom talks social distancing and kids, ‘You don’t have to be emotionally distant’

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“You should never have to sit that far away from your friends.

At any age, but especially in elementary school.

Don’t get me wrong; I get it.

I know it’s smart.

I know it’s necessary.

And I know that I want my child, their friends, their teachers, and everyone’s families to stay healthy and out of the hospital.

And so I agree with every precautionary measure being taken.

Still, you should never have to sit that far away from your friends.

It makes me sad.

And when I saw an image today in a local news article of what that looks like, I started to cry.

And then I stopped.

Because there’s nothing I can do but accept how I can help my kids with this.

So, here’s what I’m going to do —

I am going to spend the rest of my summer home with my three young kids, reinforcing that just because you have to distance from others physically, you do not have to be socially or emotionally distant.

And that just because you have to give physical space to others, doesn’t mean you can’t make daily space for them in your heart, thoughts, and prayers.

And that even though they will not be allowed to touch one another via a friendly handhold or an enthusiastic embrace, they can still absolutely reach for and towards their friends and fill their buckets full.

You should never have to sit that far away from your friends, but since our kids will most likely have to, we should let them know, let them sit with that information for a bit, and then be sure to arm them with the knowledge that to be there for our friends, we’ve just got to be there, just as we are — nothing more, nothing less — just a couple of friends sharing a table, some bravery, an unwavering hope that it won’t always be like this, and a willingness to fearlessly press on.”

Courtesy of Nicole Merritt

This story was submitted to Love What Matters by Nicole Merritt of Jthreenme, where the post originally appeared. You can follow her on Facebook, her website or podcastDo you have a similar experience? We’d like to hear your important journey. Submit your own story here. Be sure to subscribe to our free email newsletter for our best stories, and YouTube for our best videos.

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