COVID-19 Quarantine, the beginning

Imagine the heartbreak my kids are experiencing. Kids who had spent their whole lives homeschooled. Not so much as a day at a Mother’s Morning Out program. They finally get to attend traditional school and now COVID-19 Quarantine. They feel betrayed. Distraught. Borderline despair hit our home. So I thought I would pull out a story my counselor shared with me when I was having trouble accepting my reality.

There was a couple who was moving to a new state and city for a new job. They flew into town to house hunt and found a house for sale they wanted to buy. They loved the layout, the floors, the color of the walls, and the kitchen was gorgeous. They really wanted to buy this house. However, the outside of the house was painted purple! Purple?!?!! They made it very clear that they would pay asking price immediately, BUT there was one condition—the exterior of the house had to be painted white. The sellers agreed wholeheartedly. The papers were signed in the lawyers office when the couple flew back to town three weeks later.

They drove to their new home with excitement. They were in disbelief when they saw that the house had NOT been painted white. It was still purple. They were angry and disappointed.

{This is where Josh gets all technical on me and says that couldn’t happen because, of course, in the contract they would have made this clear….blah, blah, blah…he mentions that the previous owners would have had a walk-through with the couples’ realtor and would have had to paint the exterior.  WELL. Let’s just overlook small technicalities at this point, ok}

So, at this point, the couple has a decision to make. They can mope and whine and hate their purple house. They can complain against the previous owners and hold bitterness in their hearts toward them. They can groan and moan every time they drive up their driveway. OR they can radically accept reality and make plans to go buy paint and hire a painter. And we all know how a fresh coat of paint can immediately make all the difference in the world. 

I am reminded of this story as we are faced with a quarantine. Of course, no one is standing at my door making sure I don’t leave the house. But I do have a choice. I can mope and whine and be mad that staying at home is what we are being asked to do. I can decide I am more important than anyone else in my city and just keep going on about my business. The kids feel as if the Great Homeschool Wizard is playing a terribly cruel trick on them—releasing them into the world of school and then snatching the rug out from under them and sending them right back home! Poor things. They have a choice as well. Be mad, frustrated, angry, bored, discontent OR radically accept what God has given us. Time at home together again {they feel they have more than met that time quota, so this is taking a while for them to accept}. A more relaxed schedule. More sleep. Time to organize closets and drawers. Time to play piano and guitar. Time to eat as a family more consistently. Time to have their devotions in the morning. Time for exercising. Time for praying as a family about so many needs in these days. 

There are definitely a good amount of sacrifices being made by us and families all throughout our city, our state, the nation and the world. None compare to the sacrifices our health care workers are making, but I do want to be a part of helping slow the spread of the virus. So I do plan to stay home all week. I realize not all people can do that, but if I can, then I think I should. I do plan to keep my kids home all week long. I have ordered my groceries on instacart and tipped generously. I am praying for so many facets of this virus and its effects on the world….people of Italy, doctors, nurses, teachers, administration and the decisions they have to make, pastors and church leaders, business owners that will feel the effects financially, grocery store workers, amazon delivery drivers, and toilet paper production lines (!!! ok, not really praying about that last one)—among other things. I am asking God to open my eyes to needs around me, to speak to my heart during these very strange days, to stop the spread of the virus if it His will. Only He can do that. And I pray He will. In the meantime, I am learning to radically accept reality and move forward with a good attitude. I hope you will, too.