For Moms: A Quarantine Permission Slip “To Be”
Starting March 2020 the entire world was asked to take a “pause” and stay home. We were all asked to stop what we were doing, due to a global health pandemic. Most of us (with the exception of mainly doctors, nurses and healthcare first responders) were all asked to stop running around and to be quarantined at home. We were given permission to stop the hustle and bustle of DOING and invited to start BEING!.
We have found ourselves in a pause, in which for many this pause or universal shift has been a godsend. For others, it has been a very unfamiliar and uncomfortable feeling. We are a society and a culture that has been formulated to always be on the go and be busy. But now this unexpected universal shift is asking all of us “to be;” to shift from a state of doing to the state of being.
Shift From State of Doing To State of Being
As moms, most of us find ourselves in a state of doing. We are constantly doing the lunchboxes, doing the coordination for the playdates or carpool, doing the dinners, doing the laundry, doing the doctor appointments, doing the scheduling for the tutors, doing the weekend plans, doing most of the household emotional support, and the list goes on and on.
However, this shift is inviting us to be, rather than to do.
Honestly, at first, this was not an approach that was easy for me to accept since I am a natural “doer.” This new state of being has been a challenge for me since it is innate in me to serve others and to do! For the past month, I have found myself at home still doing and being busier than ever. I find myself with an internal struggle to really make the effort at least for one day to just BE!
I gave myself permission on the weekend to be in a “state of being” and stop doing so much around my home. Honestly, just “being” had me feeling a little overwhelmed. But I quickly adjusted after giving myself permission to be and take my dance class on Zoom. I also sat down to binge-watch Marvelous Mrs. Maisel. I will confess, it feels great to just be with me! In fact, it opened a great opportunity to be aware of how much can be done by others that live in the house too.
It was so liberating, I feel compelled to invite all mothers that are finding themselves still too busy, mothers that continue to do too much because now you’re in your house with your kids having to work from home, and you find yourself still doing, doing, doing… I want to grant you a permission slip to just BE.
Quarantine permission slip to be
Here is your permission slip TO BE (contrary to TO DO):
To be happy
To be sad
To be overwhelmed
To be grateful
To be still
To be creative
To be YOU!
I offer my fellow moms a quarantine permission slip just “to be” present!
Be intentionally present with your kids and loved ones. I know you are present more than ever with virtual learning but that might be a state of doing. Try to observe them, listen to them, challenge them to be bored, let them just be, too! Take a step back and be present with your husband as well. This is a great time to use their love language. If you don’t know your loved one’s love language, take the Gary Chapman Love Language Quiz.
Be willing to receive and give love during this slowdown. It is so evident that the power of love transcends the physical body. Although we are having to stay home, you can show your love and gratitude by writing letters, making cards, baking goods, doing Zoom prayer calls, making face masks for health workers, or making sandwiches for the homeless. It has been pretty incredible to witness the outpouring of gratitude to doctors, nurses, healthcare workers, grocery workers, and teachers. If you need inspiration on how to be grateful, check out good news movement.
Stillness is powerful since we typically are on the go! In the state of being still, it is usually when all the feelings start coming out. The feelings of fear and sadness can be uncomfortable, but they are necessary and it is OK to feel that way. In fact, this permission to be is so that you can feel. It is healthy for you to let it out and feel. Here is your permission slip… to be sad, be frustrated, be overwhelmed, and be OK with it. To feel all the feels is normal, it is natural. Don’t repress your feelings.
When you are still in silence is when you tap into your spirit. Many of us are always too busy to listen within. When you sit in silence, I highly recommend that connect with your inner self as a morning ritual. Sit in bed or find a cozy spot in your home and listen to your spirit. This is a great practice to develop for the morning and/or at the end of your day. During this reset, being proactive about cutting off the noise and being silent can bring much peace to your life. This practice was introduced to me with Deepak and Oprah and they seasonally offer free 21-day meditations, it was a good beginner’s start.
Revisit your never ending to-do list. I want to paint, I want to dance, I want create bracelets and necklaces, I want to write a book, I want to plant a garden, I want to knit, I want to be a photographer, etc. Pick one and do it! You have the time. This slow down is inviting us moms to be creative. Revisit your wish list and make one come true. Once you exercise your creativity, you will feel the freedom to be and a great sense of accomplishment.
You may find yourself busier than ever since we have to stay home, but don’t forget about taking care of yourself! Give yourself compassion! This is mainly why I want to grant us moms this permission slip to be! Use it. Give yourself permission to love yourself, to take care of yourself, to laugh at yourself, to drink a glass a wine with yourself, celebrate yourself!
This universal shift made me realize that we are human beings, not human doings. This shift is asking us to change from a state of doing to a state of being; so take this time and this permission slip to be… enjoy your state of being with yourself, with your family, with your loved ones. This shift is a gift to be present!
Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, and today is a gift, which is why we call it the present! –Bil Keane, Cartoonist, The Family Circus
If you are seeking other resources for moms on how to make the best of quarantine, you may be interested in the following: