2020 has certainly been a year so far! Here we are, deep in the midst of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic consisting of quarantine, social distancing and learning to live with a "new normal." We miss family, friends, our customers, celebrations and the interactions we share with others on a daily basis. Not all of our experiences during this time have been the same but all of our feelings are valid. It is OK to have good days, not so good days, highs and lows. We have felt a range of emotions but look forward to the brighter days ahead and trust this season will soon change.
Depending on your children's age, explaining the virus may or may not have been easy to understand and the details conveyed vary. Either way, they have noticed a change in routines and a change of pace. Little ones are always turning to us to help make sense of what is happening and to provide comfort. It is important to talk to them, make them feel safe and do our best to help them navigate this "new normal."
As places slowly begin to reopen and you will more than likely begin going out, masks and face coverings are being recommended or required. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends wearing a face mask or covering to help slowdown the spread of the virus.
Tips we have found helpful as we prepare to go out with our little ones:
- Allow them to hold the mask and play with it
- Show them the mask casually around the house
- Wear your own mask and explain what it is and why you are wearing it/show them pictures or videos of others wearing masks too
- A fun print on the mask will make it more attractive to them
- Talk to them about the virus and address any questions they may have. We found this great resource
- Don't force them to put the mask on
Remember to have patience as this is new and uncomfortable for them too.
My recent experience with this "new normal" really showed me how wearing face masks is part of our everyday now. Weeks ago, when we began making masks for Little Owly, I showed my daughter, EV, a face mask that was specially made for her in the sweetest butterfly print. When I explained to her what it was and tried to put it on her she would not even let me get it close to her face. Both of us became slightly frustrated and I decided to not push harder. I figured I would try again at a later time. As the weeks have gone by, she has seen us making masks, talking about them and asking what we're doing. She has seen us all wear our own masks when having to go out and the exposure got her attention one day. One day she casually asked for her mask when she saw me packing up an order. She has not gone out anywhere just yet other than to see family and car rides but will now wear her mask for short periods of time. The innocence of little ones and their ability to adapt is an incredible thing.
As we learn to adapt and live in this "new normal" (whether it will be for a short or long time), here are some things that works for us - try to keep celebrating and enjoying the everyday moments…play a favorite song, dance it out, go for a walk, give them your little one an extra hug! This will not only be good for you but for your little ones too!
*If you are looking for a face mask, Little Owly has children's, women's and men's masks available. Click here to purchase.