Take care of yourself. That was the takeaway from a Zoom call I had Thursday morning.

This past fall, I attended a Changemaker Conference put on by the Minnesota Extension Office that encouraged idea development around the opioid epidemic. Since then, we have held regular cohort meeting calls via Zoom.

The call started out with the icebreaker question: If you could be quarantined with anyone, who would you pick and why?

My response was: How could this experience get any better? As dogs came in and out of my room, Shannon walked by blurry eyed and Jerry sent a dog “up to the principal's office” as she kept sitting on Mick’s homework.

Someone mentioned having a professional chef and building contractor at home with them. I loved that idea! Lucky for me, Jerry loves to cook (homemade sushi and Indigenous tacos are on the list this week). But, it would be really convenient to have someone who knows a thing or two about home repair stuck with us!

Conversation continued around the treatment and recovery community. How can AA and NA meetings exist in a time of social distancing? Someone mentioned meetings in a parking lot but even if people stay 6 feet apart, not more than 10 people can safely meet.

As with everything else in our world, a transition toward technology is inevitable. The Facebook group “Leech Lake Sober Squad” was mentioned for their daily live meetings.

Since the meeting has concluded, with the message to take care of yourself, I’m realizing my family is all a little growly today. How can we all take care of ourselves and support one another?

Ugh. I’m tired. Why do I have to be in charge of their self care?

Why? Because I am the adult and should be wiser, stronger and kinder than the children.

So even if I want to give up and roll into a ball all day, I need to operate with them in mind. Yes, it is cloudy. No, it is not yet raining. Let’s stick to the schedule. Time to have the kids eat lunch and walk the dogs.

I wish there were support groups for kids in this wierd time. Virtual AA type meetings. “Hello, my name is Mick and I don’t listen the first time I’m told something.” “Hi, my name is Shannon and I roll my eyes 500 times a day.”

Or maybe a meeting for parents. “Hello, my name is Leah and I just want a nap.”

Editor’s note: Leah took a four-hour nap after work Wednesday.

This COVID life is a constant up and down — a roller coaster of emotion and boredom. This makes being a wiser, stronger and kinder family member hard. I just want to give up but that isn’t an option.

The options I have for leading my family are 1. Encourage the schedule. 2. Allow complete chaos to consume the household.

Even if I feel like leaning toward chaos, I must maintain the schedule — for all our sanity!

Oh yeah, I have to remember to take care of myself. I think a nap will fit perfectly into this afternoon’s schedule!

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