On parental loss and acceptance

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It was fun while it lasted.

I used to see you all the time.

After daycare, in the schoolyard, at parent-teacher nights. Playdates on the weekends and birthday parties. You knew me and I knew you. Our kids knew each other as well. Very well. That’s how we became friends.

And now they’re all grown up. They don’t need us to coordinate their social schedules anymore. They have their own ways of communicating (even though you reluctantly gave them a smartphone).

And it’s not just because of COVID-19.

Oh, no.

That’s an easy excuse, isn’t it?

Sure — we’re not hanging out at the schoolyard waiting for our kids because, you know, physical distancing, but things had changed long before the pandemic came. …


Reality bites sometimes

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Between COVID-19, politics and 2020 in general, it’s been a heck of a year.

We’ve all had to re-evaluate what reality really means in this new environment.

Friendships, relationships, what’s really important.

These are some of the topics covered in Parenting Tales From the Trenches.

Take a read and take a deep breath. 2020 is almost over.

And while you’re waiting for the year to change to (hopefully) something better, take a read of the recent stories in PTFTT.

To My Former Friends: Its Been Nice Knowing You

Patience? What’s That?

How to Handle COVID Fatigue

I’ve Become THAT Mom Because of COVID-19

Want more Parenting-related content? Check out my blog at Multiple Mayhem Mamma.


Kids and Instant Gratification

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Why wait?

That’s what most kids think when they’ve decided they want something — now.

In the age of the Internet, digital communications and Amazon Prime, is it any wonder?

We’ve gone from waiting patiently by the mailbox for weeks on end for that much-anticipated package, to clicking a button on a screen and receiving the resulting purchase the same day. To this end, is it any wonder that kids have no patience?

There’s something to be said for anticipation. The wait is often rewarded with the buildup that makes the final acquisition oh, so appreciated.

Patience is a virtue, but not in the digital age. …


Advice for weary parents

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Photo by Kinga Cichewicz on Unsplash

Got COVID Fatigue? You’re Not Alone

So here we are. Months into the pandemic with seemingly no end in sight.

What’s a parent to do? Especially when we’re tired — no, fatigued — at trying to keep up with all of the rules related to staying safe.

Wash your hands!

Sanitize!

Wear a mask!

You can’t meet your friends at the park/mall/playground/their house!

It seems like it’s been no, no, no, no and no since we went into lockdown. It’s hard. But even harder for the kids, no?

As for parents? It’s tough always being the bad guy or gal. It’s exhausting, actually. …


On uncertainty and chronic illness

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Photo by Markus Winkler on Unsplash

The Best Laid Plans…

I was looking forward to that Zoom call with my friend, the one that I used to see fairly regularly pre-COVID. We were going to catch up virtually, have a glass of wine through the ether and, perhaps, a few laughs. I’d geared up for the online reunion for days.

Then the aches and pains started. The fogginess and fatigue set in, once again, unannounced. It was just there. As it always is — unexpectedly.

Like a quadruped scurrying away with its tail between its legs, I regretfully informed said friend of my inability to connect.

“So sorry,” I texted.

“I’m having a lupus flare and am not up to speed. …


Home school or in person classes — what’s a parent to decide?

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Photo by Allie on Unsplash

“Back to school” means something very different this year…

It’s time to send the kids back to school…or not. Parents are facing a tough choice in this first September following the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. The decisions that need to be made are wrenching — should I send them or should I keep them at home?, many wonder.

It’s not easy.

There are conflicting voices on each side of the argument as to whether going to in-school classes is best, or homeschooling until the pandemic passes is the right choice. Many parents are feeling guilty — whether they send their kids back or choose to home school them.

Who knows what the right choice is, really? …


How Headphones and Ear Buds Have Disconnected Us From Each Other

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Photo by Elice Moore on Unsplash

“What was that you said?”

How many times have you had to repeat yourself to someone because they didn’t hear what you said the first time? The reason? They were oblivious to your words because they had their earphones in.

Conversely, how many times have you had a one-sided conversation with this same person, thinking they heard you, then discovering that they had their headphones on the whole time that you were talking?

Probably many times, right? You’re not alone, sadly.

The world has changed because of earphones. People are missing important conversations, comments and more because of their continual need to be plugged in. Case in point — you say something to someone within earshot and they ignore you, or they realize you said something and say “what did you say? Sorry — I had my earphones on.” You then realize, feeling foolish, that you had been have been conducting a monologue, not a dialogue without realizing it. …


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Fear and Loathing of Viruses Real and Imagined

I’ve never wanted to be “that” mom. You know the one I’m talking about: over-protective, hyper-interested in every move my child is making, hovering at every turn. I used to hate mothers like that. “Let the children play,” I’d herald to whomever would listen. But life has a strange way of throwing curveballs one’s way. In my case, the unexpected curveball came in the form of a virus.

COVID-19, the vector that has caused pandemic of our lifetimes, has shifted our priorities and made us revisit what we think is important.

As a long-time advocate of “letting the children play,” preferably in a free-range manner, this latest turn of events has forced me to revisit my perspective. …

About

Samantha Kemp-Jackson

Writer, Media Commentator, Creator & Host: The Parenting Then & Now Podcast, Writing: https://skempjackson.contently.com/, blog: http://multiplemayhemmamma.com

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