ECQ Diaries: Give Yourself a Break

Day #45 of the Extended Community Quarantine and I know it’s been hard for everybody. We may have different family dynamics – some dads cook, do the laundry, are the designated tributes to do the groceries – but, this post is for the moms who are working doubly hard now that everybody’s staying home.

If you’re like me who likes to plan, I can just imagine the thought bubbles in your head. I understand and won’t judge your need to have separate spreadsheets of meal plans, grocery list, savings and expenses because I’m like that. I need to see in writing what needs to be done, what’s missing from our supplies, how much money I have left.

I know you worry and pretend that you don’t so the kids won’t worry as well. I know that you try to keep yourself busy with starting urban gardening with kitchen scraps like that Pechay that just didn’t grow. I know that you get inspiration from your friends’ posts of their meals and try to make the next meal time special for your family. I know that you’ve spent hours researching for worksheets and other activities to keep your kids off the gadgets. I know that even if you’re working, that spreadsheet of grocery list is open just in case you remember something, just a quick Alt+Tab is all it needs to update that list.

Then at night, I’m sure you worry about the future. Will school start in June? Is it safe to send the kids by then? What if we take this year off from school until a vaccine is already available? Do I have enough time and patience to homeschool the kids? Will we still have work a month from now? How much money do we still have left? Do we still have enough to pay the bills that never stop coming?

It’s hard not worry at a time like this but please remember to take care of yourself – physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually. Take some time off from your busy day to do something new, something you love, or something that inspires you. Give yourself a break from time to time.

I am glad that I’m part of an online community that is already great before the ECQ but became greater when this pandemic started. The group has hosted a lot of activities since Day 1 of the quarantine – from online Bring me games, Charades, Name that tune, miniature clay tutorials, parenting talks, meditation guides, cooking and baking class, dance class! You name it, we did it!

Here’s a miniature egg and macarons that I did during the tutorial

I work at home so I’m busy the entire day until end of shift at 4:30 PM. After spending time with the kids, dinner and washing up, I fix the pillows , get comfy on the bed and turn on Netflix. There’s nothing like a good Korean drama to end the day. I am currently watching Lee Min Ho’s The King Eternal Monarch which releases new episodes every week. And while waiting for the new episodes, I watch Park Seo-joon’s Itaewon Class.

In the morning, I try to do even a few minutes of exercise just to wake up the muscles, I cannot do hardcore work-outs because my ankles hurt and it triggers my Asthma. I love coffee and I’m grateful for my cousin who gave me a French press that I am enjoying now with my Folger’s Classic Roast or Barako Coffee from Tagaytay. After breakfast, I enjoy a long bath with my favorite bath gel and soaps. Something that I was only able to do in the weekends but I get to do now everyday.

I like taking photos of food, the sky, sunsets. I feel at peace when doing that especially when the sun is about to set, I just walk out to our balcony, take a photo and watch the sky change colors.

As stressful as our situation is right now, remember to take some time off and take care of yourself. Don’t beat yourself up if you missed something on the grocery list or the kids have nothing to do. Just so you know, I ran out of paper so my kids didn’t have worksheets this week and that is okay. Don’t be pressured if you see your friends serve hotel level meals to their family or their plants grow faster than yours. Don’t think for one second that you are being lazy by just watching Netflix all day or bingeing out on the cookies that you baked or bought.

We deal with this pandemic differently, we learn to cope the way we know how and there is no right or wrong way.

As they say, you do you. Stay strong, Mamas! We will all get through this!

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