Quarantine and the Pressure to Be the Best Parent Ever

There are moments that I sit and think, “Is this really happening? Is this real?”

Yup. The world is literally upside down. One bat. One man. One virus has literally brought the world to a virtual halt. (By the way… can we all agree that bats are the MOST ugly, disgusting, gross creatures on the face of the planet!) In any case… Jami and I were hanging out the other night talking and the discussion eventually landed on what our current reality looks like with quarantine. She expressed a deep desire to make this time memorable and fun… a time that our kids will never forget. But it wasn’t just that she was saying this as a matter of fact. I could tell that she was getting deeply emotional and that this had been weighing on her mind for some time.

So I reminded her that “the kids will, in fact, remember this time. I mean, what kid wouldn’t. They haven’t been to school for roughly 30 days. AND… we don’t really know when exactly they’ll go back. ALL of their activities have been canceled. Life is in fact, nowhere close to being normal. So, if your goal is that the kids have a memorable experience during this time… then, mission accomplished.”

That is, of course, not what she meant at all. What she meant, was that it was solely up to us to plan each and every day of quarantine with a fun, new adventure. To plan activities that keep the kids busy and brings them joy and laughter. To make sure that their happiness and memories are our number one priority… Every. Single. Day.

Essentially… We. Have. To. Have. A. Grandiose. Plan. Every. Day. (Oh, and by the way, we don’t know when this quarantine will end so you will need to possibly have a never-ending plan which makes this even more stressful than it already is).

Just listening to Jami express her thoughts brought my stress levels up.

And I know why she was in this mindset. Jami’s a planner. She needs to know where she’s going and what’s going to happen along the way. So I knew why she was thinking like she was. I also knew that this was bringing a ton of pressure her way to be the perfect mom with the perfect plan to make this the perfect quarantine ever.

And the reality is that it’s not a bad thing that she wants to be intentional with our kids during this time. Having some intentionality is a good thing… no… it’s a great thing. It’s necessary.


In a time like this, it’s not necessary each and every hour of every day.

We don’t need to have a plan for every day. We don’t need to become event planners for our kids and come up with a grandiose plan so that this time will be memorable for them.

Instead, we should focus on simply being present with them. Because in this time, what they will find memorable is the time they had with us. They’ll remember the walks we went on. The huge (said with a Donald Trump voice) sand hill we climbed together. The time we played Uno together as a family. The time we taught Carter how to drive. The time we had a sleep over in our room with Morgan. The time we watched movies together as a family. The time I played video games with Carter while the girls watched.

Some of those things were planned. Some were spur of the moment where we stopped what we were doing to simply hang out with them. All were simple things… things they will remember. Things that didn’t take stress to do as a family.

During this time of quarantine, it’s good to have a plan. It’s good to plan things as a family. But for you planners out there, don’t let the stress and pressure of thinking you have to have a plan for every day overwhelm you. Because it’s in the little moments… the moments that were unplanned, that our kids will look back on and remember with smiles.

Below are a few things that we’ve done as a family… and a few things that I would like to do. All of them are simple moments that you can have with your kids.

Go for walks… around your neighborhood and/or at our county or state parks

Go for a bike ride

Watch movies

Catch up on your favorite tv shows together

Make a cake

Have a sleep over in your bedroom

Make a pizza together (not a frozen pizza)

Play card games

Play video games

Do a TikTok video with your kids

Have an indoor picnic

Train the dog

Make homemade play dough

Do puzzles (I hate puzzles. We won’t do them in our family)

These are just a few simple things that the kids will remember… simple things to do during this crazy time of quarantine.

Bottom line… don’t stress yourself out trying to make this the most memorable quarantine time ever. Our kids will remember this time. So simply slow down… and simply BE with your kids. And when they get on your nerves, (believe me, they will) when they want to play Uno for the 10th night in a row, run to the store by yourself and buy your favorite treat just for yourself and hide it when you get back home.

Now it’s your turn. What are other things that you as a parent have done during quarantine? Ready. Set. Comment.

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