12 Jun Happier at Home, an Upside of Quarantine
Life during quarantine has been hard. Just like yours, our kids have been home from school since March. Public buses are shut down, we can’t travel between departments (states), and we have nationwide curfews, making our staff’s daily commutes difficult. But, amid all the difficulties, there are good moments as well. For some of our children, they are happier at home, an upside of quarantine we didn’t expect.
Making Time to Be Quiet
The idea of having quiet time with 40 children at home seems impossible, but we make it work. A few weeks ago, our psychologist Ana Maria shared how she and her team have been working with our children during the pandemic. They’re keenly aware of how stressful situations can cause regression in our children’s emotional health.
As a way to help our children quiet their minds and bodies, they decided to offer yoga and guided meditation for our children. With a few intrigued participants, they set up during free time under our pergola in the backyard. Mats were spread across the tiles, the children learned their poses, and together they listened to the mediation. Images of a tree with deep roots and a rainbow glistening in the sky helped them focus their thoughts and rest their bodies.
Quietly, the meditation ended and everyone slowly opened their eyes. Everyone, except Josue. Looking back and forward everyone assumed he had fallen asleep. As all the other children remained silent, Ana Maria moved quietly towards him. Perhaps if everyone was quiet enough, he could continue his nap. As she neared, a smile spread across his face and his eyes opened. Josue explained that he had seen the “beautiful rainbow” with its many colors and felt happy.
Josue may have enjoyed class the most that day, but everyone else also left feeling happy and relieved as well. The class was so successful that each day children are asking to do yoga and meditation together. They are craving quiet time. Their little classes might outgrow our patio soon.
Enjoying Time Together
After school started in January, our home was especially quiet during the day because most of our little girls started preschool. There weren’t giggles throughout the house and daily walks to the park anymore. The school transition was especially hard for Dulce.
Dulce came to Dorie’s Promise almost eight years ago. She was a tiny baby, much smaller than an average four-month-old. As she grew, we noticed development delays and limitations. With the help of our staff and specialized Montessori homeschooling, Dulce has made significant advancements in the last few years.
Dulce is one of the most loving children in our home and she especially enjoys playing with our preschool girls. Once our little girls started going to school each day, we noticed that Dulce was very lonely. The toddler boys aren’t nearly as fun to play with as Elizabeth and Estella. Thanks to the quarantine, schools are closed and Dulce’s favorite playmates are home all day.
The little girls aren’t the only girls who are special to Dulce. On one particular day, our Special Mothers set up a relay race for the kids in the backyard. Divided into two teams, they had to complete a series of activities as quickly as possible. Of course, Dulce wanted to be part of the game, but doing so many activities in the right order was hard for her to understand and complete. Seeing how much she wanted to participate, Marta and Alejandra carried Dulce through the obstacles. From activity to activity, they carried her, letting her down to complete the task, and then picking her up again. Dulce seemed to fly through the course, free from her limitations and fully part of her team.
In case you’re wondering, her team won.
We’re constantly amazed by how thoughtful and loving our children are to each other. In the middle of a competition they all wanted to win, our girls made sure Dulce could participate as well. They take such good care of each other.
With everyone home again, Dulce is a new girl. She’s not sad or lonely anymore because her family is with her all day long.
Happy at Home
Trying to care for our children and manage their needs has been stressful lately. We know they are confused by all the changes and anxious to return to their favorite activities. We feel the same way. It would be easy for us to miss out on the good moments happening each day. Thankfully, we’re able to each catch glimpses of goodness to share with each other.