I Am a Pandemic Mother

I am a pandemic mother.

I stand in the kitchen.

I have just cooked an egg for one child.

The other is off at school already.

The egg child refuses to eat. His yolk is goopy and unacceptable to him.

I can’t. I break.

Because I am already broken.

I am shattered by this pandemic. By the worry, and the constant change, and the school’s “off and on” button that yanks my life around at a moment’s notice like a little microcosm of the greater uncertainty of life and death staring me in the face daily right now.

I am tired from two births and also climate change.

I am exhausted from too much family and not enough friends.

I am depleted from too much Zoom and too little nature.

I am worried about my older son’s propensity to all things digital.

By his lack of understanding that the last few years are not normal.

They are his normal. I am in grief that they have become mine.

But I also have lived long enough that I have memories.

Wisps from my own childhood of hours and days spent with friends that were screenless.

Wandering through drizzling rain and escapades up back stairwells.

I wonder if these are better or if they are simply older.

I struggle to see the beauty in the green building blocks and the mods of Minecraft, and I feel myself being left behind like some salmon that can’t swim upstream anymore because the drought has changed the landscape.

Old spawning patterns interrupted by new realities.

Will they be ok, my children? Will we all?

These are the thoughts swimming in my brain, searing into my heart as I stand there, soaking in my younger son’s refusal to eat the yolky egg.

I want to yell “Do you know how many things I want to refuse??”

But I can’t.

I am voiceless. My refusal meaningless as the days unfold around me. I am one of many pandemic mothers, invisible in this crisis and yet so deeply affected on so many levels. I simply break down into hot gulping tears that make me feel like a madwoman.

My husband thinks I am crying about the egg.

I wish.

This post originally appeared on on my IG feed.
Photo: Pixabay
Abigail Wald is a lifeline for spirited kids and their sometimes dispirited parents. Her podcasts have had more than a million downloads, and her mentorship project has shepherded hundreds of families to the other side of struggles that previously seemed insurmountable. Visit motherflippingawesome.com to learn more.
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