Mother’s Day always feels like a Hallmark holiday to me, although I don’t begrudge the opportunity for us to express gratitude to our mothers (although, frankly, we could be expressing it anytime).
Mother’s Day, the Covid-19 edition, probably looks very different to many people, especially to those who have multigenerational celebrations – no brunches out with mom and grandma. Mine, however, looked much as it has for decades, calling my mother, across the sea in Hawaii (no flowers this year – austerity measures are in place!) – and no celebration for me.
Quite a few of my friends who delayed parenthood for careers now have 6 and 7 year old kids, and they’ve been telling me of both the trials and tribulations of child-rearing in quarantine. I still can’t imagine how some of them manage to homeschool and get anything done, and because I can’t really be the usual Auntie Sarah lending a hand (babysitting via Zoom is not terribly practical) I feel very removed from their experience.
Sometimes I’m acutely aware of my childlessness, and these weeks in lockdown have given me more time for reflection than I usually have. And to be honest, it’s a really, really difficult topic to work through. The fact that I don’t have children is both a choice and not a choice (it’s complicated – I’ll cover this in a much longer post over on my other blog soon) and it still takes work to be at peace with this fact.
On one hand, I wouldn’t have been able to have the career I have, or to live in the city I live, had I had children. On the other, it still gut-punches me to think of what life would have been like with kids, although I realize that this doesn’t help me at all. It reminds me of the state of the world we all face right now; there’s nothing we can do with the situation at hand, and the best we can do is to keep moving forward given what we have. And so we do, and so I do.
I don’t have any neat way to tie up this thought, but it’s just one I wanted to share on this quarantined Mother’s Day.
Have you called your mother today?
My task: I’ve been working on a lot on online and virtual projects, but I want to start pivoting towards working on projects I’m producing for future performances. I need to keep the balance between dealing with the challenges at hand while anticipating the needs of the future. I think I’ve got a plan for the upcoming week (done!)