To my fellow parents …

Lisa Rossi
Pollinate Magazine
Published in
3 min readApr 14, 2020


This is a fort. Credit: Lisa Rossi.

To my fellow parents:

Every time they slurp up your soup,

Climb into your lap while you are ordering some groceries,

Collapse face-down on the floor because “screen time is over for the day,”

Believe me when I say: You are crushing it.

Think about it.

You are doing the impossible.

You are their everything right now.

You are the one in your home that is supposed to have the answers to all the questions.

When will this be done?

Will it hurt you?

What if you get it? Who will take care of me?

You are taking all of this on.

They dreamed of hitting a baseball during Little League. They wanted to go to the science center. They miss their teacher. They wonder what video games their best friends are playing that they don’t have. They remember the last bounce house birthday party they went to. They wonder if their birthday party will be like the neighbor kids’, when cars just drove by his house.

They don’t want that.

Yes, some days feel like a crapbasket.

You worry about food.

You worry about money.

You worry about death.

You put on a brave face

For every dream that’s lost, you are planting new dreams in their minds every day.

And it feels like you are doing it all alone this time. Teachers are gone. Grandparents are floating faces on Zoom. Friends are words on a text.

But they are also cupcakes on your porch.

Darkly funny memes on your Facebook feed.

Gentle nudges to keep going, because if they have to, you have to as well.

You are not as alone as you think.

People tell you to be grateful and you are not grateful.

And then you are and you feel guilty for what you have when others have less.

You wonder each day: What is the most good I can do?

And sometimes, the answer is nothing.

Sometimes the answer is sneaking your own little episode of Schitt’s Creek while they have their little own screen time somewhere else in the house.

And still. Most moments: there they are. They are watching your forehead, wondering when those little wrinkles will show on your skin on the place between your eyes. That’s a sign that you are worried. You think about that. And you contort your face to show them that you are strong. That you are the one to find the fun. You can turn your dining room table into a “restaurant” by using your fine china to hold a meal of mac and cheese, hot dogs and peas.

You are the one who can make a meatloaf that can also be reheated as leftovers.

You are the one that can wear the same old yoga pants for three days in a row.

You are so stealth, no one even notices.

You bury your head into Facebook, not to escape anymore, but to understand.

When will things be different?

When will I stop worrying about death?

Or get rid of that new fat roll that has appeared on my stomach?

Why am I so shallow?

You’re not.

You are getting by with a chocolate treat. It’s a reward for getting through breakfast, lunch AND dinner.

When your children ask you if kids get hurt by Coronavirus, you keep your voice light and remember the next chocolate snack awaiting you.

They feed on your optimism.

And even if it’s just about the chocolate, look at what is happening. You are making it work.

Since the time you’ve chosen not to leave the house, they have grown taller.

They no longer fit into their school-year pants.

Suddenly, one of them is talking about his newest dream. He wants to use his love of math to be an accountant someday.

There’s a giant fort in the living room with a “no adults allowed” sign on it.

There’s a dirty dish in the sink, there’s no food left on it.

They ate it all.

To my fellow parents, please:

Tell yourselves you are doing this really well even if things don’t feel well.

Because I really need to hear that right now.



Lisa Rossi
Pollinate Magazine

Obsessed with the growth mindset, design thinking and telling great stories.