The Bright-er Side: A shoutout to stuck-at-home parental figures and guardians

Household heroes continue to save the day from the comfort of their own home and deserve all of our support

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ILLUSTRATION: Siloam Yeung / The Peak

by Juztin Bello, Copy Editor

The other day I was in my “office” (my bedroom) getting some work done. I hadn’t realized that time had slipped away from me and knew I would be late getting started on making my dinner. When I left my room to head down to the kitchen, I ran into my mom in the hallway, who has been working from home since quarantine began. She looked at me with apologetic eyes as she made her way from the bathroom to her office, and she said: “Sorry son, I was going to start on dinner for you but I’m caught up in a lot of meetings.” 

I was confused. Why was she apologizing? There was nothing for her to apologize for, I totally understand having a lot on your plate. Plus, I tend to make my own dinner, why did she feel obligated to make dinner for me? But reflecting on this later, I realized that her remorse for her inability to prepare dinner due to her workload came from the duality of her household presence. Not only is she a worker, but, more importantly to me, she’s a mom — a mom who is caught between mixing her work and home life in the midst of a pandemic. 

This moment, while miniscule, really had me thinking about the various people out there who are forced to work from home and also have responsibilities in their respective households. Not to mention those like my dad who, for the benefit of our household, continues to travel to his job downtown as an essential worker while also coming home to cook, clean, and watch after the dogs. It is at this time of uncertainty and need for support we should look inward and appreciate the people working within or outside our bubbles who keep a brave face and maintain peace day-to-day. Whether this be pet owners who have to take meetings while their dogs bark in the background, parental figures and/or guardians trying to balance making meals with working their 9-to-5 from home, or people who tend to the needs of grandparents and others who may require assistance, these people are themselves pillars of resilience in this trying time.

Regardless of who may be looking out for you or if you’re in a situation where you have multiple obligations at home, take this time to recognize that all guardians deserve extra love and appreciation for how they’ve handled balancing work and home life during this pandemic.