So .. This is Getting Kinda Brutal

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It was easier when this started. We were perhaps hopeful this would blow past in a few weeks. We were energized by the idea of a few quiet weeks at home to reflect and to have some time off from our crazy life . There was some adrenaline in thinking ..”We’ve got this!”, “Great! This is the perfect opportunity to (fill in the blank)”.
Now a few weeks has become months for some . Bad news is coming at us rapid-fire now with the death rate and job losses. This journey is hitting us all with different levels of intensity: financially, physically and emotionally. For many of us feelings of isolation, boredom and anxiety are really setting in. Maybe what’s hitting you hardest is missing your real-live friends, the lack of clear answers for our future, or the reality that more and more fun things are being cancelled. Your dreams of getting home projects completed or even actual work done are possibly getting crushed by lack of motivation or extra distractions at home. Maybe you’re getting sick of the noises and smells coming out of the people in your home. You may be getting really, really sick of your own dang kitchen. Just saying.
How do we keep on keeping on and help our kids stay sane and positive as well? We wanted to share some things that have been working for our own families and some ways for you to connect.

1. Make some “plans” you can look forward to that are actually going to happen. It’s no complete substitute for a big night out, but if you plan , for example, that Friday is “family movie and ordering pizza night”, it’s something to look forward to at the end of the week. A young friend of ours had a great idea- theme nights!! Each Saturday is a new theme. This week: Halloween in April! Next week: Christmas in Quarantine! See what you can come up with. Write it on the calendar. Don’t forget about your own adult plans too. It’s a great idea to claim your own time too; online happy-hour with friends, a dressed-up, in-home, candle lit “date night” alone with your partner once per week. Tell us about your “plans” ! We’d love to hear from you and get inspired.

2. Look outside of yourself. If you can focus your thoughts on spreading good vibes to others, it may help you to see the good around you as well. When negative thoughts seem to spiral, think of someone who has it tougher at the moment and try to send them some joy. Make some cheerful cards for a nursing home. Facetime a grandparent who may be lonely. Put some books you are finished with on a neighbor’s porch. Write some positive messages on your sidewalk. Show us what you come up with! Tag us on instagram @Charitybomborg and #byecoronachallenge

3. Loosen the rules and let things get a little weird. We are way ahead of you on that game here at Charity Bomb!! We’ve been in the “weird zone” for years!! Come on in. Try to set some hard and fast rules that work for your family, and outside of that, game on! Schoolwork, a bit of exercise, and some fresh air may be requirements for your family, but maybe you will ease up on screen time rules so kids can connect with friends for longer. Perhaps schedules are looser for older kids. Maybe your daughter wants you to dye the tips of her hair purple . Jammies all day and breakfast for dinner? Who cares?? Do it! Let it get a little weird. Take the pressure of perfection off of yourself for now. The beauty is that there are no rules. This is new to us all. There’s plenty of time for your high standards in the future, or maybe we’ll start to realize that dropping some of our standards leaves more room for other things to grow…Let’s see what happens.

4. Remember the best way around a situation is ALWAYS straight through it. Feel all the feels . It’s okay to be sad. Just don’t stay under that umbrella for too long. We can’t shield our kids from all the news. Let them know some of the FACTS ONLY so they can be realistic, but no need to bombard them (or yourselves) with information either. Focus on any positive news you can find. There’s always something if you look hard enough. Ask them every couple of days how they are feeling and what they are sad and happy about in that moment. Some days you may just get a grunt , and some days you may be very surprised by an outpouring of emotion. Make sure kids have a chance to be seen and to feel heard. Let them know it’s okay to feel what they are feeling and remind them to think of the positives and that they are FOR SURE NOT ALONE in their feelings. Check out our interview with Dr. Brooks Gibbs as a great resource on how to talk to kids right now https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R8947VdPUqA

5. Don’t take ANYTHING personally. Emotions are higher than usual. Words said may not be words meant. Lots of stuff is bottling up. Be quick to forgive yourself, to ask for forgiveness and to forgive others in your home. Thank you @jenhatmaker for that reminder!!
Please keep in touch. We’d love to hear from you! Insta @charitybomborg, Twitter @CharityBomb, Facebook @charitybomborg … . Keep spreading your positive ideas on Instagram with #byecoronachallenge. Don’t forget to tag us @charitybomborg!
We’d love your support in our efforts to make sure the kids stay mentally healthy with our GENzEQ initiative.

Wishing you Strength and some Laughter,

Melissa, Charity Bomb GenZEQ contributor