Shelter from the Storm

by: Erin Rose Hennessy

It feels like a year since I last wrote a blog post. On Friday, I was laid off from my job. Saturday marked the first day of a 2-week Shelter in Place order implemented on our state. My cat and I are temporarily staying with my sister and her family. My two nephews (10 and 6) are loving this arrangement. I feel more of a sense of stability and like I can do life because all I have to do is look around at my sister helping my nephews fix their stuffed snake and know that I’m where I’m wanted.

Being laid off is hard. There are so many choice words I could use to express how I feel and think towards my former boss but I won’t. I can only control my reaction – which is why I have decided I am done with daycare. For the future, I am looking into nanny options as well as education and community service jobs. Right now is a hard time to look for work, but I’m hopeful. I have a part-time nanny job lined up for at least the next two weeks (possibly longer) so that at least covers some of the bills. My sister helped me find a coupon for my asthma medicine so I don’t break the bank the next time I go refill it.

My sister and her family live in the suburbs of our city, about a twenty minute drive away from my apartment. It’s full of trees and streams and lakes, bike paths and walking paths about. They’re less than half a mile away from a regional park which I’m very excited about! After a weekend of rain, it is sunny and beautiful outside.

My nephews started distance learning this morning and I now have a profound sense of respect for all the parents who are working from home with small children during the quarantine. I knew it was difficult, but knowing it and living it are two different things. After their hour of work, the boys were done with their learning – and us adults still had a long way to go. So, they played with clay….then did some chores…and finally their mom relented and let them watch TV. I will sing the praises of the electronic babysitter all day long – because I’m guilty of using it as well!

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