8 Things I've Learned from Being a Mom in Quarantine
It's really interesting to see how this pandemic has changed the way people think and do things. We've all been forced to slow down, reassess what really matters and learn how to bake bread. Because, weed is legal here in Canada so we've all got the munchies.
Now that we've hit the six month mark, I felt like a little reflection would be cool. Kinda like looking in the rearview mirror, ya know? Except since this mother-effing virus isn't going anywhere anytime soon, it's kinda like looking at what's ahead for us as well.
Even though that sounds a little depressing, here are some things I've learned about being a mom in quarantine.
A lot of stuff that I used to think about doesn’t actually matter anymore.
I have a luxury SUV sitting in the garage that’s had the same tank of gas in it for 5 weeks. My snow tires are still on. All of my business suits and high heels are collecting dust. I put on makeup for the first time in three months yesterday, and I didn’t even look familiar to myself so I took it all off. Comfy patio furniture where we can ‘get away’ to the backyard is more important than a luxury hotel room right now.
My kids are a lot more resilient than I thought
One of my kids has worked an insane amount of hours in a grocery store, one started a university-level copywriting course, one got his first job and one found a girlfriend.
The next time your kid asks you what's for dinner, tell him to let you know because these kids are waaaaaay smarter than we think.
Meetings are so much better without pants
I mean, I think we all suspected it but it turns out to be 100% true. Don't get me wrong- I love my downtown office. I love being around people and feeling the collective energy from collaborating. I love my favourite coffee shop and my local lunch spot. But meetings without pants are fucking heaven. I just have to remember not to stand up when I'm on Zoom.
Red wine is an essential worker in my house
For me, wine has taken the edge off of motherhood since 1992. (I feel like that could be a best-selling t-shirt 🤔) It’s something that I look forward to each day as I deal with being a working mom and all of the joys that come with it. Wine has seen me through a divorce, single motherhood, college as a single mom, a nursing career, a second marriage, every stage of raising kids, and founding a start-up in the tech space. Some women may rely on weed or exercise to unwind and I enjoy those in moderation, too! But wine is the star essential worker and always has been.
Homeschooling isn’t worth ruining my relationship with my kids
No matter how old your kids are, you probably weren’t meant to be a homeschooling teacher. There’s the nagging, crying, frustration and yelling- and that’s just you! Now, add in the kids and the perfect shitstorm is a-brewin’. Is it worth sacrificing your relationship with your kids to try to ‘keep up’? If you have one of those special kids who loves to sit and learn, go ahead and get your favourite teacher’s sweater-vest on! But if your kid is feeling stressed out, why push it? They’ll catch up. And I don’t know about you, but I work too hard to keep an open, honest line of communication with my kids. I’m not gonna let grade 10 math get in between us. Especially when everyone is already stressed enough.
Some of the meanest people on TikTok are 50-something year old white women.
Like a lot of people, I downloaded the TikTok app and started playing around because I had a bit of extra time. I uploaded a video of my husband eating quarantine snacks and before I knew it, it went viral.
But with all of the views on that 30-seconds of our pandemic life, came the comments and -ugh- I’m not kidding when I tell you that some women of a certain age are MEAN y’all. Like, take a girl down and spit her out BRUTAL. Don't just take my word for it, check out the comments on the video above!
My neighbourhood is full of nice people
I’ve lived here for almost nine years now and I only know a handful of my neighbours. But lately, I’ve been meeting all kinds of people because we’re all out walking. Day going slow? Take a walk! Feeling like eating/sleeping/drinking the day away? Take a walk! Taking a walk is the quarantine prescription that we should all have. Walking just makes you feel better.
We don’t need as much toilet paper as we thought
Just by luck, we had purchased a large pack of tp from Costco the week BC ('before Covid'). There are five of us living in this house and we just ran out a couple of weeks ago. Ok, that's a bit of an exaggeration but you get my point right? Why are people so terrified of running out of toilet paper?
I'm sure you've done a little self-discovery about you and your family, too. It's amazing when you really think of how much our lives have changed in such a short amount of time, isn't it?
I hope you can find some bright spots in 2020. Even the stuff that seems really hard can be turned into something a little more positive if you open up your mind. And if it's too hard, always go back and talk to the wine, Mama.
Joanne Ilaqua - CEO of MamaSoup
Hey there, I’m Joanne.
I’ve spent about 20 years serving women as a nurse, doula and Lamaze educator. I have 4 kids and I know firsthand how lonely and isolating motherhood can be, so I created MamaSoup. I'm mostly known for my love of red wine, spontaneously singing and my confidence in being my true self on social media. When I’m not busy building women up, you can catch me taking Instagram stories of my bulldog Ruby, watching The Handmaid’s Tale, playing MUber (Mom Uber) to my kids or vacationing in my favourite town: Cabo San Lucas, Mexico.
I love serving the world by providing a space for moms to connect and support each other. In my opinion, moms are the backbone of communities because they are (literally) raising the future!
As the founder and CEO of MamaSoup, I’ve been featured on CHEX TV Morning Show, KawarthaNOW, Economic Development- The City of Kawartha Lakes and MyKawartha.
Still with me? Join me over at MamaSoup to keep the conversation going!