If you asked me when I first started blogging where I’d be in the year 2021, I would never have predicted what we’re experiencing right now. Finding routine and structure has truly been saving my sanity throughout dealing with the state of the world. The Tiger King era of 2020 was fun. I celebrated being on a little vacation. Loosened up with homeschooling and we ordered pizza from a different famous place every week (I live on the East Coast, so we have real pizza.) That was our first routine. It lasted until the Tiger King Finale.
Fast forward to summer. I’m able to actually get away from my laptop since school is out. Suddenly finding routine in the summer became even simpler. We took it slow every morning. We sang songs, we made bread, we got outside in nature every day. We went on long, beautiful walks and I smiled and waved to people and felt warm inside. There was some light of hope. I felt like my routine was grounding me in a level of security and that if I somehow lived my life as normal as possible and got outside to feel the sunshine, things would be okay.
Fall routines fell into place and looked a little more structured. Homeschool 2020-2021 started out great. The homeschool routine is still strong! We’re editing and adjusting as we need, we’re playing with neighborhood kids, we pulled together to create a socially distanced and fun Halloween for the littles. School was in session and we had motivation to push through.
Winter, however, is hard which brings me to the importance of finding a routine that works for you and being able to be flexible with it. I’m teaching remotely, Leo is inside more, and I’ve had to work hard to maintain a routine and structure once again as our situation in our world changes. I watch the news. I see the unrest, and sometimes I have to force myself to break the routine of constantly reading and analyzing everything that happens around me. I’m thankful Leo is young enough that I don’t have to try to make these times make sense for him because a lot of this doesn’t make sense to me.
I took this photo at the beach down the street from our home on one of our winter evening walks. Part of school for Leo is getting outside in nature as often as possible. We walked down to the beach together and didn’t bring anything with us. No toys, no balls, nothing to dig with. We just walked and kind of re-explored what was offered to us. It was quiet and it was freezing! But I felt grounded and hopeful that as long as we keep our routines, we’ll keep our sanity.
I’m hoping that every day we’ll see the light at the end of the tunnel and our world will find harmony again at least a little bit. How are you keeping your mental health in check? Are you loosening your routines? Adding new ones? Tell me all the things!