Coping and Embracing

Francie Khalaf by Francie Khalaf Additional Needs

Francie Khalaf

Francie Khalaf

I am a wife and mother of two children with cerebral palsy. I believe in making lemonade out of lemons

This is undoubtedly a scary and hard time to be living in 2020.

The uncertainty alone can cause panic attacks. Doctors are prescribing anti-depressants more than ever before. I spent the first several days once the virus hit the US in a state of panic. It began to affect the whole family. My husband and kids noticed the mood change and I felt frustrated with my short temper. This is not the usual me. Of course, as a parent sometimes you lose your patience but overall, I tend to be upbeat and positive.

I stopped watching the news and slowed down my brain as much as I could. I found that stopping the news and embracing our time at home was what I needed. I began making my to do list of things I have been meaning to accomplish. I sat down and made list of activities that I could do with the kids.

My husband and I came up with the best plan to keep our family safe.

It’s not often that we are forced to slow down. Our lives (especially with kids, let alone kids with special needs) are incredibly busy. We rush from one thing to another and from appointment to appointment. We rarely have time to accomplish things on our to do list at home and end the day feeling frazzled. This is the time to relax, enjoy family time and get some spring cleaning done.

I am a busy body. I tend to fill my schedule to the max and then push things I don’t accomplish to the next day. I recognize this in myself and I come by it naturally. My grandmother was the same way until her dementia began to set in.

This slowing down has not been easy for me.

Even now, forced to be home, I still find myself filling up my schedule with hopes and dreams for the day. I have a lot of things I want to do but I know I won’t be able to do them all during this time. I know this because my to do list, like many of yours is 100+ long.

As I sit and stare at our blank calendar for the month, I realize that now is the time to embrace it. One year from now when we are rushing around and staying so busy, we feel frazzled we will wish we had the time to slow down. We will wish we were told to sit and watch Netflix and have forced family time for months. Embrace it.

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