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When Home Becomes a Safe Haven

As the mother of a medically fragile child, I have taken this shelter in place very seriously. My son is one of the vulnerable. It would be dreadful if he contracted COVID, so my motherly instinct was to take this quarantine on like a second job. Everything has been locked down in our house since mid-March. I’ve had everything delivered I possibly can, and my husband has handled any needed trips into public.
My son and I have only left the house for needed doctor’s visits and lab appointments and a couple of times when my husband has forced us to go for a ride for the sake of everyone’s sanity. Ezra has done exceptionally well in this time of lockdown. His health has been much improved, he’s gained weight, and even his color looks healthier than I’ve ever seen.
It’s been perfect for him, and in turn, home has become a safe haven. The added stresses of having a chronically ill child have decreased significantly because I have control over much more than I’ve ever had before. I have a sense of security in this state that so many see as a punishment.
But…
The world is starting back up around us. We are still waiting out the virus at home, but we can’t do so forever. As lovely as the added health has been, being on lockdown isn’t living. It isn’t fair to lock my son in a bubble to keep him as safe as possible, no matter how badly part of me wishes I could do precisely that.
At some point, I will be required to let go of the safety of home and allow my son to be a boy again, in the real world. It’s terrifying. After getting a taste of what protection against germs and infections feels like, I don’t want to go back to normal. But I know we must, eventually.
Letting go of our safe haven will require a whole lot of faith and surrender, and I’m already praying through what needs to happen in my heart and mind to allow me to make this move when the time is right. I don’t know what it will look or feel like yet, but I do know that a large piece of my heart is cursing the day that I have to let this go and get back to normal. Hopefully, the added health and weight we’ve accomplished in this time will enable him to do better in the real world.
While most people are dying to get out of their houses, I’m dying to hold onto this time as long as possible. It will take time and patience to reset my mind to leave the safety we’ve grown accustomed to in this crazy time of life. I know I will do it because I must. But remember those of us who are always terrified of germs and infections will have a much harder time letting go that those of you who do not stress about health daily.

Please be patient and kind with us as we give up our safe havens and enter the wild once more.

Published inMental Health

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