2020 was a year full of challenges, hardship, growth, pain, loss, and love (among many other things). It’s hard to summarize a period of time that was full of change, yet was also very stagnant. Parents were expected to take on new roles and responsibilities, juggling far more than they ever had. Overnight, our lives changed drastically with no instructions on how we were supposed to adapt. We all just did the best that we could.
Even though some days seemed impossible to get through, and time often felt like it was standing still, getting by and doing our best was all we could do – and it was definitely good enough. Last year didn’t turn out how any of us had expected, and forced us to look at our lives in a new light. So while 2020 had some very negative aspects, we did have countless opportunities to grow. While we’re more than ready for 2021, we wanted to reflect on what we’re taking with us from 2020 with our community of parents.
“One thing that really helped me was doing some form of physical activity, maybe it was going for a run, a walk with the kids, or even just getting outside into my backyard. Getting fresh air helped me not so feel cooped up physically and mentally.”
“For me personally, the year flew by because 2020 was officially the year that EVERYONE potty trained! It was wonderful being able to connect with and work alongside so many families all over the globe (thanks to Zoom and Instagram!), and the reward of helping them achieve potty success never gets old. Having my kiddos home with me definitely kept things interesting, but it is truly a blessing to have this extra time with them when I wouldn’t otherwise. Hidden gems in the chaos of a pandemic!”
“A few glasses of wine and some great books that I could get lost in – even just for a moment!”
“At the start of quarantine, I felt a pressure to be a teacher, a parent, a baker, to work out more, clean more – the list goes on – all while working. The truth is that the only way I survived 2020 was by letting go and recognizing that I can’t be everything to everyone and that’s okay. Some days I was an engaged educator for our daughter and we ate takeout pizza. Other days I baked healthy zucchini bread and Inez was glued to sesame street. I’m walking away from this year having internalized the idea that all we can do is our best and that’s good enough. Just because she watched more tv this year alone than i wanted her to in the first 5 years of her life doesn’t mean she’s going to be stunted down the road. We are still standing. We made it through!”
“The support of family and friends, even if we were far away from each other. Zoom calls definitely don’t replace the real thing, but just having that support and encouragement meant so much during times that sometimes felt so lonely.”
“Focusing on myself and my own wellness, not just everybody else’s. Sometimes that meant shutting the bathroom door and taking a bath, reading a book before bed, or even just going for a short walk. All of these small things really helped me stay patient and helped me gain some sense of calm.”
“Remembering that I don’t have to be a superhero even when society makes it feel like we do. Moms are always expected to play every role, all of the time but it just wasn’t possible. Some days getting out of bed was difficult but I had to realize that didn’t make me a bad parent. It just makes me a real parent.”
“Netflix and reality tv, just so I could momentarily forget what was going on in the world and lose myself in something lighthearted.”
“Learning to lower the expectations I had set for myself and really leaning in on grace. Giving my kids, myself and my husband grace while really practicing patience are the things that helped me get through 2020 with a little bit of my sanity still intact.”
“Telling myself to just accept that things aren’t perfect. They just are the way that they are this year, and there’s really nothing we could do about it, but make the best of the situation. I adopted a policy of being more gentle with myself, and others, in general.”
Our Bümo community is a strong one, and we will be here for you as we begin 2021, and beyond. While we definitely don’t have all of the answers, we’re here as a resource to support and encourage all of the amazing parents out there who are bravely entering the new year. 2020 has helped us grow in so many ways, and no matter what 2021 throws at us, it’s important to remember that we’ve got this.