Spraying Down Your Food with Lysol? You are not alone.....
“We need to catch the Coronavirus and put it in jail, and then we will be able to go out and do fun things again.” My 4 year old son says with fervor. I nod with agreement and we reminisce about our trip to Disney World and Legoland.
He started school last September and the world opened up to him in a myriad of ways. He made loads of new friends, fell in love with his teachers and experienced endless exploration. It came to halt when his Spring break turned into a stopping point for his socialization.
Most of us are in uncharted territories navigating this new world. However, I realize I am the filter for my son’s view of the world and in these formative years every action matters. So when I started to explain the complex Coronavirus and the new rules, I wanted him to understand the need be careful, but not fearful.
It was strange to say that we can visit his grandparents but only in their backyard and no hugging allowed, or even getting close to them at all. It was an odd experience for him to see his friends walking in the neighborhood, and only allow him to wave hello and not play.
He has watched his happy go lucky mom turn in a creature who obsessively puts on bright pink kitchen gloves everywhere, including when going to the bank drive through window, no lollypops allowed anymore.
I endlessly spray down the kitchen counter, the bottom of shoes and packages that arrive at our door. Whenever my husband or I goes out to buy food , we wear masks and gloves. Once home, we immediately strip down throw clothing in the laundry and run to the shower.
I am not alone with my newfound obsessive cleanliness, and seemingly strange behaviors to try to keep safe.
A friend, Sarah recounted to me that her husband Charlie, bit into an apple and spit it out and asked her, “Did you spray this with Lysol?”
She exclaimed, “Of course I did, I was going to clean it later with soap and water and I always peel them before I give them to the girls. You never eat apples so I didn’t think to tell you.”
I’ve explained to my son, this is not normal behavior and it will not always be this way. But, it’s hard to know what goes through his mind during these impressionable years.
People are in lockdown around the globe and these are trying times. However kids are listening, watching and learning. Now is not the time to show fear, but rather that it is a time to listen, watch and be thoughtful. I must lead by example and attempt to always keep my cool, because however long this lasts, his worldview will be altered forever by my actions.