Our family has now completed its first week in the confinement of our home, and I suppose many of you can relate to our situation.
Overall, I have to say it went quite well. The kids absolutely love it - I mean, could there be anything better than no school?
Granted, they have to do homeschool now and I am keeping them on a busy schedule that includes math, English, and German but also fun activities like music, art, play, and projects with Mom.
But at least they get to stay home, spend lots of time with Mom and Dad, and they actually have somewhat of a say when it comes to their curriculum.
And how are the parents doing? Fortunately, I have to say the parents are doing well, too. We love to spend time together, and we've always been rather close.
But sharing a tight space all day also presents special challenges, and so I think this time is a great chance for all of us to improve ourselves as persons and partners. Let's come out of this better than we were before!
Let me give you an example from our own week. We do our schoolwork at the dining table and now obviously spend a good part of the day (intermittently) at that table. We, that is the kids and me.
When Bob comes out of our office, he joins us at the table to eat a snack or read the newspaper. And he often leaves us some dishes or spread out newspapers as a greeting on what I consider to be the "family desk."
Since the dining table now acts as a desk, I have been rather impatient with him as he continued to leave little "greetings," and I told him so much. He was not happy.
We may well need the table space, but my point is not that I shouldn't have told him to leave the table clean.
What are you leaving unsaid that could make your home a happier place?
Rather, it is what was left unsaid. What I left unsaid is that he eagerly cleans up the kitchen several times a day, that he takes the kids for mystery walks every day, that he always supports me in all my endeavors... you get the idea.
I have always appreciated what he does - no question about it! But I don't think I adequately expressed my appreciation.
How about you?
Do you mostly point out what you need or expect from your loved ones?
Are you abundant in your appreciation of who they are and what they contribute to your life together?
Make your life not only bearable, but enjoyable: Add lots of kindness to your home
Now that we are all stuck in close quarters with each other, I think this is what it comes down to in order to make our lives not only bearable but utterly enjoyable:
Kindness to ourselves and to the others in our home.
Let us try to be patient and forgiving with our family as we go about our new daily lives. And let us try to express our appreciation for all they do and all they are to us.
Let's make it a goal not to point out our loved one's weaknesses several times a day, but rather their strengths and what we value about them.
That might just change the atmosphere in the house!