“It is all so surreal. Some days I read every article I can find and others I barely use the Wi-Fi at all. Some days I cling to social websites seeking adult friendship and some days my heart is too full of the littles in my own home to even consider the world outside. It has been heartwarming to see, from my neighbors to my social circle, the unity in following guidelines to keep our fellow humans safe. I was completely unprepared for the storm of entitlement that is starting to thunder down on us.
We have all had to adjust. No one is going to come out of this unscathed; emotionally, financially, and for some, physically. I live under the assumption that most people are going to make the hard choices that will keep their fellow humans alive; as we all know, life is the most valuable thing. It never occurred to me that my fellow suburbia moms were going to be the group that starts the life-threatening revolt against the scientific guidelines, but here we are, y’all. Here is a simple list of reasons that do NOT entitle you to risk anyone else’s lives:
1. ‘My kids have had to give up so much.’ Really? Is your child one of the thousands who have lost a parent/caregiver to this virus? What DID your child give up? Most of the expectations children have are guided by their parents. My kids have ‘given up’ the same things everyone else’s kids have given up (with the exception of the lives of people close to them). My kids are learning and GAINING so much from this! Life is unpredictable. This is how we change plans and work with what life throws at us. Pouting and throwing fits does nothing; we adjust and move on. Success is not being measured this spring in the ways we are used to, but in keeping each other alive and safe. You guys can do this! You are strong! You are adaptable! You can find joy in any situation! MY KIDS HAVE GAINED SO MUCH!
2. ‘We had to cancel our vacation.’ You had to cancel your EXPECTATION of a trip. But did you die? Seriously. If your vacation plans are more important than the lives of other people, you need to seek a qualified mental health professional, ASAP. What a great opportunity to show your family that life can be fun no matter your location on a map.
3. ‘People are suffering and out of work.’ So…we need to risk their lives by resuming our social schedule? We lived through The Great Recession. Like many families, we lost so much. We had to start again and rebuild, as humans always have. We didn’t die. We didn’t lose each other. We certainly didn’t risk each other’s lives in the name of the economy. Again, your kids are watching you. They need to know their lives are more important to you than money. They need to know that when bad things happen; the family weathers it together. Everyone will go through hard times. Are you teaching them how to be resilient when those times come?
4. ‘We are depressed because we can’t hang out with our friends.’ Depression when going through a pandemic is a reasonable response. Most mental health professionals are offering tele-treatment. Please, if you are unwell, physically or emotionally, seek medical help. Allow yourself to feel sad. Work to find joy. Learn a new hobby. Learn to fill your life with new things. Do new things as a family, which helps keep you accountable. Zoom your friends regularly.
5. ‘We know a Doctor who says this is all fake.’ Doctors used to bleed people to get rid of their ‘bad humors.’ Doctors prescribed DES to pregnant women for 30 years. Being a Doctor is not the same as being a scientist.
6. ‘The government can’t control me.’ They can. They do. It is not political. You followed the law to get your driver’s permit. You drive on the correct side of the street. You expect hospitals to have basic standards. You assume the food you eat meets basic safety requirements. Most of you use public water. You let them control you all day every day. It is not a huge sacrifice to follow their protocol to keep your fellow humans alive.
Stop making excuses to ‘get back to your regular life.’ Follow the guidelines in your community. Be proud of the new life you are building while protecting others. I hope you stay well and safe. I hope to see you out and about in the future. Peace!”
This story was submitted to Love What Matters by Tara Ahrens of Fort Wayne, Indiana. You can follow her journey on Facebook. Submit your own story here and be sure to subscribe to our free email newsletter for our best stories.
Read more from Tara:
‘My teenage boys carry a tampon and pad in their backpacks because gender taboo!’: Boy mom raising teen sons to ‘see past’ menstruation taboo, respond with ‘kindness, understanding’
‘My teenage boys helped me shop for their little sister’s first bras today…because breasts happen, y’all.’: Mom challenges ‘stigma’ of female puberty, ‘my boys know picking out a bra is no big deal’
‘Mom, I’m an atheist.’ Our family is deeply religious. He appeared to be bracing himself for a battle.’: Christian mom says ‘I will love and accept my son NO MATTER WHAT’
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