Captain Mom's Log: Week 20: Day 137

My how time flies. Or doesn't. Or something. It's been almost a month since my last log. Where to begin...
The toilet paper! That's a great place to start. The toilet paper is back in full stock!! As is the hand sanitizer. Still no disinfectant wipes, but everything else seems relatively back to normal at the grocery store. I suppose the masks and distancing is still there. That's the new normal. I'm already used to it. So. Strange.

What next?

Schools. Should I open that Pandora's box? Why not. What are your thoughts?

Here are mine:
As a paraeducator and a parent, I am wholeheartedly relieved that my county schools are online until January. Paraeducators have an interesting job. We get to see the inner workings and the outer workings of the entire school. We see the best and worst and everything in between. That being said, when I hear people say things like, "With enough funding, we can easily control social distancing in schools," it makes me cringe.

I don't know if you've ever had experience with crowd control or if you've ever worked with more than 2 children at once. Guiding or even managing is one thing, "control" is quite another. In the past three years I have worked in about ten different elementary schools, two middle schools, and one high school. Public and private alike and there is little difference, kids are kids. (These examples below are not all from my current place of employment.)

On the best of days here is what I see:
Hugs, kisses, sharing of food (despite a strict rule not to do this), arm wrestling, cuddling, piggy back rides.

On the worst of days here is what I have seen:
Fights which involve: fists, verbal close-proximity yelling, spitting, full body brawl. New students who run from the building and emotional kiddos who need physical assistance at least once a week, sometimes more.

Now, will the kids be aware of the virus and be cautious? I don't doubt it. But will there also be kids who A) don't give a fuck B) can't control their outburst of emotion be it positive or negative and enter each other's bubbles C) accidents/forgetfulness

Even with class sizes at 7 and students distanced around the room, all it takes is one kid who is asymptomatic and forgetful or highly emotional (which who isn't at this point??) to mess it all up for everyone. The numbers are spiking at an alarming rate across the country. Yes, we are doing worse than any other country in the world right now.

As a parent, do I want my child to be lonely and losing crucial social skills? No! Do I want my own space back? Sure!? Do I want my child to be happy and emotionally healthy? Yes, of course! But I also would love for him to be physically healthy. I would love for him not to be scared or worried at school about the virus. I would love to keep my own health and protect our grandparents. Kids will inevitably bring this home to us and our elders.

So then there's the question: is the virus really that bad? Am I just in a panic? I have spoken with several folks in the medical field and this post does not come from a place of panic. It comes from listening to stories others have shared with me that are truly terrible and I don't want my loved ones to know these stories first hand.

I realize this log is on the preachy side. I would love to hear your thoughts as well.

And on a positive note: toilet paper!



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