Guest Blog by Lauren Haber
It’s day 44 of quarantine and I want nothing more than to be with my family and friends again! I could tell you about my quarantine activities, the puzzles I’ve struggled through, the many baking fails I’ve encountered or the nightmare of grocery shopping in NYC but that’s not what keeps me up at night.
I always claimed that I’m an introvert regardless of what others say. I truly enjoy declining social events just to put on a face mask, drink wine and read a book like the basic B that I am. I thought that meant I’m an introvert but during this quarantine, I’ve discovered that I am very much the opposite.
My parents recently converted all our old VHS videos to digital which worked out nicely since they’re stuck at home and can binge the videos constantly and I mean CONSTANTLY. My dad ALWAYS had the camera on us! He recorded the big moments of our first steps, first words, first bike rides but also all the little moments of dancing around the living room naked and singing “Do Your Ears Hang Low?”. Every day of quarantine my parents text me a new clip of me as a toddler, in 90% of the videos I’m a naked, which is questionable. According to my mother, I hated clothes and she gave up on trying but that’s a whole other thing to unpack.
The one video that stands out is of me playing pretend with my older siblings, they’re about 5 and 6 years old and I’m around 2. In the video I’m tucking them in to go to bed and they’re calling me mom, then a minute later I wake “my babies” up for breakfast. I was TWO YEARS OLD! Ever since I can remember I’ve been a momming people right and left!
In college I met the best group of friends, in total there are ten of us who are still close to this day. Seven of the ten actually live in NYC and an eighth is moving here this summer!! Back in college we decided to assign family roles based on our personalities. The family has a dog, there’s a nanny, there’s a middle child, the list goes on. They dubbed me mom and naturally, I fully embraced the name. Although this was all for fun and jokes, they still call me mom to this day!
My mother always says that she’s only as happy as her saddest child and that’s exactly how I feel about my friends and family. Rarely do I lose sleep over my own problems but if my friends or family member are going through something, I’m wide awake. I often say that my heart hurts and I don’t mean that figuratively, my heart actually hurts when I see others hurting.
The mom gene is just in me and I will mom you without even trying. You got a cut, I have a bandaid, you want to swing by the apartment, I’ll make a cheeseboard, you’re sad about anything, I have wine and cookies and back scratches. I don’t know how to not be a mom to people and this time without my real family and friend family has really been testing me. I have no one to mom on!
During this time of isolation I’m feeling many emotions, anxiety that is typically minimal is now taking over every other day. Some days I workout, get a lot of work done and cook a great meal and other days I just give up and take a nap and that’s all okay with me. The one thing that makes my heart hurt the most is missing my family both real and figuratively. I now know that I am so much more of a people person than I ever thought. I can’t wait till I can go back to Momming my friends and family. I’m full of bandaids and cookies for you guys!!!
I hope everyone is hanging in there and if you need an ear or a penpal, just reach out firstname.lastname@example.org.