Why woman with young children are the real heroines during the Corona crisis

- Raising awareness.

To all woman and mothers out there: first, we are all in this TOGETHER! I want to raise awareness to all people, who may think “Am I the only one having all these weird thoughts?”. You may think why are mothers especially of small children heroines during this Coronavirus time? Let me explain this to you. I am a European mother of three wonderful children, but with the horrible age of 4 months, 3 years and 5 years. Of course it was our choice to have children and don’t get me wrong I honestly love them, but now is the time were I am truly thinking to myself, “why the hell did I choose to have children?”

First, the tantrum season: Under “small children” I mean the wonderful age group of toddlers (12–24 months) and preschool kids (2–5 years). We all know these age were tantrums are normal because of their age. Tantrums are these “funny” situation when your child have a spectacular explosions of anger, frustration and disorganised behaviour. The only thing as a mother is to stay calm or at least pretend to stay calm.

When I heard the first time about the lockdown of schools, preschools and kindergarten my first thoughts were “All the children who do not have a safe and healthy environment, will suffer the most.” We all know that the age group between 2 and 4 years is the highest risk group when it comes to violence at home. Statistics show that only in the United States, every day 4 children die from child abuse, were over 70% are under 3 years. This is really shocking and horrible. Even more I want to raise awareness to families with young kids. This age group makes you crazy even if there are the best little sunshines. There are times and days in which your sunshine is having a tantrum and even make the calmest mothers scream.

Second, normal virus season: Of course all mothers and fathers are trying their best to protect their family during this virus time. But be realistic. All families with young children know, that currently is the high season of all sorts of viruses. From Kindergarten to preschool young children are getting sick quite often. This is related to the fact that children have an immature immune system and they’re encountering all the viruses, bacteria, and other antigens in the world for the first time. Is this now a good timing that you have a sick child at home, or even worse sick children? No, its not. With every little sneeze and cough I am thinking I hope this is not Corona coming to our house.

Third, Motherhood as working mum: The sleepless nights with a four months old baby is one thing, but “normally” you have the two “older” ones in Kindergarten and preschool which gives you time to work quietly and going to the office before the kids are coming home. I am living in a country where women start working around 4 months. So here it comes again: WOMAN and especially Mothers are currently, facing the biggest challenges ever. We are forced to suddenly cook three healthy meals a day, plus two snacks a day or sometimes even more, doing all the household works, like laundry, cleaning, vacuum cleaning and beside all of that full time working. The dishwasher is suddenly running two-three times a day. The laundry machine is running each day, the waste is going crazy from all the cooking and meal preparing, changing diapers etc. After lunch half an hour later you get the next wonderful sentence from your children, “Mummy, I am hungry again”. Honestly, is there any time when they are not hungry, thirsty or have a bleeding knee, elbow, hurting there had, because of their rough playing games? No.

Fourth, Homeschooling: A normal day before Corona, would have started with a breakfast and the kids are off to school and kindergarten, eating there a lunch and having a snack before getting picked up around 5/5.30, or being pick up by their Babysitter/Nanny. But now? Not even a cleaning lady is coming anymore, because everyone is so scared to get the virus. Now mothers are trying their best to have a schedule to plan the day and help with homeschooling, etc. At least to help fathers to get their work done. After week 1 of scheduling and homeschooling the realistic expectations of “I got this” are going down. To be realistic even for me having a rather good schedule and a rather good set of habits, it’s not easy. It’s absolutely insane. I thought that homeschooling would be fun with my kids, but after 1,5 weeks I am fed up. I have to help my young kids and dismiss my own best working time to do their homework together. I did study law and economic but not pedagogic and there is a reason why kids are in school and not at home.

But how to survive these surreal times? Mothers are never allowed to give up. But hell yes we are allowed to have these thoughts and questions and be jealous of all the people who are currently working from home without having small children or even children.

So next time, you think if you are the only mother who is feeling overwhelmed or exhausted. You are NOT alone! I feel you. We GOT This. We take DAY by DAY. We are HEROINES.

Mother (noun)

“A skilled person with specialism in logistical and facility management, food preparation and cooking, event planning, negotiation and location of lost items. Possible mind reading capabilities. Can survive with little to no sleep. Superhero.”