Different than Originally Planned

April 20, 2020, admin

A lot of things are looking different lately, like our children’s birthday celebrations.

My oldest son is eight years old and as soon as the New Year starts, he knows his birthday is near. I really enjoy planning birthday parties and I involve the entire family in the process. I ask what cake flavor the birthday person would like, the theme, guest list, location, and so on.

Therefore, it was no surprise to me when my son whipped out his notebook where he had written down his plans for his upcoming birthday. He has really honed his planning skills.

In February, he had handwritten birthday invitations ready. When March arrived, he was very excited for April, his birthday month. But by mid-March, his birthday plans became fuzzy.

My husband and I answered questions and gave information that a birthday party with his friends may not happen. We were as clear as could be- given the situation and answered his questions with compassion. We let him know that we would still celebrate but in a different way than what we originally had planned.

He is excited to pick out his birthday menu and is currently planning for it. He still gets to choose his birthday cake flavor for us to make together. As far as seeing his friends and family, we may have to do a video chat or drive by his friends’ house so that they may wave to him in honor of his birthday. We still are finalizing the details as we have a couple weeks to his birthday. His birthday is not happening as we originally planned but we still plan to have fun and celebrate.

Other things that are not happening in ways we had envisioned are weddings, baby showers, family gatherings, funerals, and graduations of all kinds – high school, college, and even preschool graduations! There may be grief associated with these types of situations. It is understandable.

I hope that we can continue to move forward and celebrate in the ways that we can and also try to enjoy the new normal! What helps in these weird times is to focus on the good. Our culture is so fast-paced and parenthood intensifies the busy feelings. Being able to slow down and be home is good. I’m enjoying being home with my family.

Granted, it is not perfect sometimes – I have to get a little creative on how to engage the family in positive ways. Our family interactions are not 100% joyful but we move on and try to improve for the next go round by asking ourselves, “What good is coming from this?”

First, I am very thankful for the sunshiny weather, which has led my family to work hard on kick-starting our

garden. Second, our family walks have been on the rise and so has barbecuing.

We have adopted the Eagles’ motto “Take It Easy” – just kidding! Our motto is maybe more of The Lion King’s motto of, “Hakuna Matata,” which originates from Swahili and means there are no troubles. There are always troubles but it tells us to not worry about things we have no control over.

So, here are some questions for you:

  1. What are three positive things that have happened over quarantine?
  2. What is one thing that you want to improve going forward?
  3. How have you stayed committed to your family during this time?
  4. How do you continue to be flexible?

The Pollywog Facebook page continues to share great tips on self-care and ideas to keep you going during this time, click here for more!