The world has been saying “no” a lot lately. To us, to our kids, to many of the things that make life wonderful and enjoyable. The pandemic is dragging on, and dragging at our hearts and souls.
All of this “no” gets to be just too much after a while.
We have a growing list of wishes about what we’re going to do “once cold season’s over.” Visit family in other states. Have birthday parties and sleepovers. Have indoor playdates. Visit our favorite museums. Eat at our favorite restaurants. Shop with abandon. The list goes on and on.
But until then, it’s “no.” For now.
We all have a limited bandwidth for frustration and disappointment – I’m sure you parents out there have all noticed it within yourselves as well. And when we exceed that bandwidth, well, all bets are off. And with all of these extra, unusual, and prolonged “nos,” I can see it’s taking a toll on the wellbeing of everyone in my family, especially my 5-year old. So I’ve made a conscious decision, and here it is:
Yes to impromptu tea parties. Yes to having dozens of clips put in my hair. Yes to making cookies. Yes to a warm bath at 10 in the morning. Yes to as many cuddles and hugs are requested. Yes to pretending to be kittens. Yes to cereal for dinner. Yes, yes, a thousand times yes.
In the business of being a parent, there are always going to be “nos” – some that keep our children safe and healthy, and others that preserve our own sanity. I intend to keep everyone safe, and make sure things don’t regress into too much chaos. But beyond that, I pledge to my children and myself to bring as much “yes” into this strange holiday season as possible.
For additional reading:
- A DIY Handprint Drip Tray, just in time for the celebrations of light
- You can celebrate anything you want: Reconciling our “December differences” for families of many cultures and faiths
- Lockdown Day 45: Keeping the Pieces Together
- Groundhog day, Passover, and breaking up the monotony of lockdown
Rebekka Helford is a licensed marriage and family therapist in private practice in Los Angeles, California. With over a decade of experience working with parents and young children, Rebekka specializes in short-term intensive parenting consultation, using a variety of tools including home, office, and school visits to help families navigate developmental hiccups and get back on track. Virtual visits now available!
Click here to schedule an appointment or contact Rebekka with a question – who knows, she might even answer it in her next post!