Over the past few days Tyler and I have been attempting to wrap our minds around the uncertainty of what's happening with the COVID 19 virus and to talk with our kids about it.
I personally have been through the denial phase.
The sadness phase.
The irritation phase.
The frustration phase.
My first response was to flee...Who can watch my kids? I've got work to do! Can they go to their grandparents? Parenting is hard for me. I'm pretty sure it's hard for everyone, but for some people it seems like they are really "in their zone" with it. My "in the zone" place is my work and while I love and care for my kids to pieces and do a decent job at it, parenting is not necessarily my strongest suit.
Now, I am in a new phase. It's the curiosity phase. It's the "what happens when rather than running away from parenting, I lean in to it? phase. It's the "how are we going to use this time and space to better ourselves as a family?" phase. Because make no mistake about it, we could stand to spend more quality time together as a family. Plus we've got plenty of internal work to do and some old habits we could stand to break in the Koepke collective!
What I know for sure is that leaders bring certainty to uncertainty. And if you're a parent...newsflash....you're also a leader! Knowing this, Tyler and I collected our thoughts, typed them out, and then called the kids in for a family meeting.
We went over:
I don't know about you, but a decade + into parenting, it's become easier to get sloppy and slack on some of the basics. That has resulted in more sass and less class out of our kids than we prefer. In some respects the kids have just worn us down and at a certain point you realize that this parenting thing is a marathon, so you've got to learn to pace yourself. The quarantine experience seems like it's an opportunity for our family to reset, get our act together about halfway through the marathon, and hopefully catch a second wind.
We shall see how it plays, but what gives me hope is that in every other area of my life, every time I have been willing to go inward and do the deeper work that I've put off, the reward has been more clarity, more joy, more peace, and more fulfillment. Contraction is a tried and true pathway to expansion. And the good news is....we are about to enter into a big old collective contraction! The most important question now is....how will you choose to use this time and space?