Pots, Pans, Peace, & Pandemics

Since the Covid-19 Pandemic and associated lockdown began in March, I have used my dishwasher more than I have ever used it in my entire life! So much so, the only thing on my recent Black Friday wishlist was a new dishwasher! Am I ashamed? Goodness no!

It has a third rack, digital top controls, and will be super quiet. The lack of sound alone is enough to make me do a praise dance. My old dishwasher was so loud, you couldn’t hear yourself think when it ran. We had an unspoken rule that it could only run at night in efforts to prevent additional hearing loss (because let’s face it – occasional tuning out of spouse and children is required for maintenance of sanity).

Those first few months of abrupt remote learning in the spring brought about some of the most pressure I have ever experienced. It was during that first quarter of shutdown, of absolute pressure to get everything done and take care of everyone, that I began to feel completely overwhelmed. Work didn’t stop, kids didn’t pause, but there I was looking crazy trying to adjust to it all. So one of the first things I did in trying to relieve myself of some of the stress was getting a housekeeper to help out on a recurring basis. Now, whenever she rings that doorbell, it feels a little like Christmas. For just a couple hours, I know that someone is helping me do something I just didn’t get around to or that I just really didn’t want to do. If you’re a boy mom and the only girl in the house, then you may understand that boy bathrooms should have a sign that says “Moms are Exempt from Cleaning”! Why their aim doesn’t improve with age is a mystery I have yet to solve.

Another big help for me was getting dinner options prepared before the week started. One thing I have turned to is sheet pan dinners. You basically throw everything on it and bake it. Pinterest has some great options the family either loves or doesn’t have to have again. Either way, they ate – mission accomplished!

You ever notice how you can sleep in on the weekend, assuming the kids or dogs allow? You ever ask yourself why you don’t practice getting that same amount of sleep on weeknights? I promise you need it, probably even more Monday through Thursday. That old saying “catch up on sleep” is just a moving target!

You ever sit in the bathroom just because it’s a quiet place where people will actually give you privacy? Oh, you’re not alone. There is also the volunteer ride to pickup groceries – just bring them in after a nap! Peace is not something you can buy at the store. It’s also not achieved in one nap or bathroom sit. During this pandemic, we have had lots of time to think about the people and things that don’t bring peace to our lives. Now is the best time to remove them from your life! Life is too short to wonder why you’re friends with someone, why you work for that company, and why you always seem to have that same hangover (probably the cheap liquor and not enough water prior to). Focus on self, put you first, show you that you deserve the best you that you can be!

Don’t be afraid, ashamed, or guilty of practicing self care – SELF-CARE IS NOT SELFISH! I think women are born with a nurturing manner, a do-it-all mentality. But sometimes it’s good to take a step back, relax, and refresh. In fact, it’s absolutely necessary. So if you need a pedicure, schedule it. You need that wine with your bubble bath, honey pour it! Whatever helps make life easier, helps remove pressure and stress from the daily routine, find it and keep it! Let’s face it – the kingdom will not run correctly if the queen isn’t at her best! You’re Queen; the Queen is you!!

While there are some things we can control, there are many others that we cannot. Such is life. Covid-19 has spared no one in 2020. Stepping outside the house and greeting the mailman is almost a thing of the past. Shaking someone’s hand when you meet them – a straight up no-no! Even though it may seem like this thing will never pass, remember: EVERY STORM RUNS OUT OF RAIN (~Maya Angelou). So until this thing lets up, until it gives us back our “normal” or whatever it used to be, find a way to dance in the rain. I don’t care if you’re doing the butterfly, the stanky leg, or the fox trot, as long as you do it with a smile! And if you seem to have lost your smile, tell someone. Please don’t think you’re all alone in this. There are millions of people who can empathize with you. There is pressure in doing the right things, staying safe, and simply staying alive. But diamonds are created from pressure, so KEEP SHINING MY LOVELY BUTTERFLIES!!! The world has no idea what you are preparing to become.

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