New Episode! Why Middle School Is So Tricky with Jessica Speer
May 3, 2022

Challenging Times, How To Support Our Kids In Today's World.


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Join me this week as we discuss the challenging topic of how to support our kids in today’s world. We visit with middle school counselor Meredith Siget, mother of two young children, and fellow podcaster of the fabulous podcast, Finding Myself. We discuss the challenges that parents face as our kids have become overly exposed to references about the pandemic, gun violence, and the too many other issues of our times. Please join us on our Facebook group at facebook.com/groups/reallifemomz/ to continue this vital conversation. Don't forget to follow Real Life Momz, so you don't miss an episode. --- This episode is sponsored by · Anchor: The easiest way to make a podcast. https://anchor.fm/app

Transcript

Welcome to Real Life Momz. I'm your host. Lisa Foster and Real Life Momz is a podcast that is all about real conversations with real-life issues that parents deal with every day. Our mission is to connect moms by talking about these topics and to continue these conversations through our Real Life Momz Facebook group, where we would love for you to become part of our community. This week, we are joined by Meredith, a mother of two young kids, a middle-school counselor, and a host of finding myself podcasts to talk about how to support our kids through these challenging times.

Listen to what Meredith has to offer about how to support her family, students, and community through events, such as the pandemic and gun violence.

Hi, Meredith. Welcome to Real Life Momz Hi, how are you doing Lisa? I'm great. I'm so glad you're here and willing to be on the show today. I am excited to talk with you and to kind of just have a mom conversation. I know I love mom conversations. They're so helpful. They are well today we do have an important topic. I feel like parents and people everywhere are just dealing with how to handle and support our family through just these challenging times, right? There's just so much going on in the world. And sometimes I feel a little lost as a parent and to know what really to say to my kid, is difficult.

And I hope I can mention this. Time-wise, you know, as we're recording this, we're hearing about the invasion of Ukraine and that's on the TV right now. And you know, our young people are seeing it and they don't quite understand what's going on, but they see these images that can be scary.

So it's, it's really timely that this, uh, the topic is coming up because you know, we've been dealing with the pandemic. Uh, we've had school shootings now we've gotten an invasion and it's really crazy. It is. I know, I think I said this to you before,  I remember as a kid, like, you'd hear your parents talking about like, oh, I had to walk up three miles uphill to school and back, and, and that was their thing.

Right. But now our kids and ourselves as parents have to deal and explain all these huge issues, you know? So, et's get back to, you're a mom, you're a mom and you have two younger kids, right? Yes. I have a kindergartener and a second-grader. Yeah. And you're also a middle school counselor. So yes, I think you're on the front line of this,  you know, how to help kids, not just as a parent, but even a counselor, um, just deal with the new everyday normal.

Yes. It is interesting being a mom with two little ones and also a counselor. Cause I can take the two approaches, you know, what a kid needs to in a caring sense and also trying to understand their emotional needs and what they're saying, but not really saying I can understand that a little bit. So sometimes you need to give that comfort, just like that mom hug in the school system. We can't give hugs, but there are other things that we can do instead like that.

And then also being that mom with my own kids where I can give them a little information, but also give them that mom hug.

And I find that I, I personally, I don't know how you feel, but I personally, I have a lot of, I have a hard time answering questions. So even like going into the pandemic, you know, my kids are older, they're teens, but I kept getting questions like when will this end? Um, when can I see my friends and go back to normal kind of in the beginning. And honestly, because all these things are new to me. I don't have, you know, normally we have experienced, you know, if they ask about gosh, you know, friendship issues or something where like, ah, I can give me something, you know, experience on that, but I don't have experience, this is my first pandemic as well.

And it's hard to answer it. And I like to be honest, you know, but be hopeful and yeah. So did you, how did you deal with that? What kind of advice did you have for your children?

Yeah, well, I think, you know what you're describing, it's that unprecedented times we haven't been through them before. Um, yes, there's been pandemics, but in a different time than we are, uh, with different medical advancements or, you know, lack of the medical advancements. So we really haven't been through this before and to understand it, we were living it and trying to understand it all at the same time. Um, but I think you said some very helpful things, actually, just to be honest and say, you know what, I don't have all the answers, um, that right there, you know, is it, it's not as scary as you might think it is to tell your kids.

I don't have the answers. It's actually just real and comforting because they don't have the answers either. And they may feel like they need to know something or need to do something.

Um, and if we're saying, you know, I don't know the answers, but this is what guides me. You know, if it is the news or specific news, if it is your fate, um, if it is your common sense, this is what we can do together. You don't need to have the exact right words that our young people and actually all people, no age limit here are just looking to know that they're not alone in this and that they can rely on you.

They can come to you, you can comfort them and, and things are going to be okay, cause you're going to be together. You know, if challenges come up, we're going to deal with it together. You know, if, if the family does experience, COVID, we're going to get through this together. We're going to access our resources, listen to our doctor, uh, try to live a healthy lifestyle of resting, relaxing, eating, healthy exercising. Those are the things that we have control over.

So let's focus on them. I think that's a big part is what can we control and what can't we control? And let's focus on those aspects that we can control.

Well, said, and it's so true. You know, there is something very special about just being honest and not knowing and, just listening to each other and hearing each other and supporting each other. And what do you think about, you know, I also feel like with this whole pandemic, like initially it felt like a huge loss. Like I felt like it's almost like the stages of grief, right? Like, you know, they're grieving the loss of the things that they really enjoy doing that they couldn't do initially. And now they're kind of transitioning to this like new norm that they have, um, you know, where they know how to deal on a day to day basis.

It's nice to see that they adjusted, but I'm not sure if they did or do you think they're just desensitized? Cause there's just so much.

I think there's both. Um, I know it's, hard to look at some times, but we actually did gain some things during this pandemic and the adjustment, as you said happened, there were a lot of skills that were learned during this time. Priorities in some ways were readjusted for people. Um, and we did make connections, you know, when we talked about our COVID bubble or our tribe that we connected with and had these experiences with them that will ever will forever stay with us.

Um, knowing that we had our family around us, possibly some friends around us and we work together to get through this. That's huge. Yeah, it is. So it, you know, to kind of frame, like what did we gain from it? And that might be an opportunity to have a conversation with your children to reflect on it and put some positivity to it.

Uh, then we got through this and how did we do it? And what did with some of the things that we had fun with, you know, being inside and isolating. Um, I think parents came up with creative ways to keep your kids busy. And we created memories doing that. Um, parents should be proud of that, that change things on the fly and came up with these activities. Uh, kids should feel very proud. I know with my second grader, she was so resilient last year in first grade.

And I was like, oh my gosh, it's first grade. Uh, she really, you know, went through a very formative year going between virtual and in-person with a mask. And then we went virtual again and, oh, your quarantine, it was so inconsistent, but she was so resilient. And I was so proud of her for that, that I highlighted that she just did awesome. She stuck with it. She kept going and I needed to highlight those positives.

And she was very proud of herself hearing that and recognizing that being resilient was a good thing.

Yeah. I think we all learned how to stretch ourselves, you know, cause I think, you know, some, some of us, I know myself, you know, I like things certain ways. And when you can't do those anymore, you had to really step out of your comfort zone. And I, I think personally for my family, that was awesome. Like we learned to be more flexible. We learned to try things that we wouldn't try before because we wanted, we needed to do something new. Um, so there were a lot of positives and I think for my family, the biggest positive was actually we learned how much we like each other, like we thought we'd be fighting and oh, you're on top of each other for, you know, when we were in lockdown.

Right. Yeah. But it was the opposite. Like when we finally did open up, we're like, oh, but I still need to have family time. So busy running around and doing other things that this made us really come back to the core family. And we realized we liked that, you know? So that was also a really awesome positive our family experienced.

And that's an opportunity too, to recognize that, you know, to praise that and explain how that came to be. Um, you know, that maybe we were forced into this activity, but we're so glad that we did. It's a positive that came out of this. So essentially we reframe the pandemic and have our children think about those positive experiences instead of getting drawn into the negative.

Like I hate these masks. I really wish I could go to the bowling alley with all my friends. Um, you know, I wish I could use the drinking fountain again. I wish there was more consistency on your, all those things that they feel like they're missing. Um, my daughter missed her kindergarten graduation and for me, I was like heartbroken. Like she didn't have this, but she had a great experience and still got to have those times with her friends just in a different way.

And she didn't know any different, so I didn't need to tell her this wasn't the.

norm. Right. Right. Sometimes they don't know the difference. Right. This is just, you know, like my kids, one entered middle school, one entered high school when we were still in virtual school, but they didn't know the difference. You know, it was a new school for both of them, so they didn't really know what they were missing. So yeah,  And in some ways, it's positive because, in middle school, you're a middle school counselor. Right. So it was like, you can't sit with anyone at lunch. Well, then you're not going to be alone. You know, that's amazing because everyone's alone, there were some positives that really did come out of it.

Well, even cause you brought up lunches. Um, so you're right at the middle school level, you know, we had to keep a distance because masks were off during eating. Um, it was quiet, uh, in comparison to other years with lunches, but we also felt that our students enjoyed sitting in peace and calm and being with themselves, uh, too many times, like in the school setting or in the life of an adolescent it's move, move, move, move, move.

Here's an activity, here's an activity. Here's an activity. There are so programmed either, you know, going from one class to another, uh, to your after-school activities that to just sit and be with themselves initially is a little challenging for them and uncomfortable, but they got used to it. And now it's a positive that sitting by themselves, isn't that stigma that it used to be and they enjoyed the quiet. So it was like, that's awesome that you found a positive in all of this and you learned something about yourself and you know, it's okay to just take that break and be quiet.

I know there are lots of things. We have the pandemic, obviously. Uh, but we also mentioned gun violence, gun violence is big. And I know you had an experience with the school shooting near you. I know by us, we had also a shooting at our local supermarket and these are, these are scary. So if you don't mind, maybe talk a little bit about your experience. I know back in November, right. Was your school shooting, not at your school, but a, a close-by school, is that correct?

It actually is the high school where I grew up in the town that I grew up in Oxford, Michigan. Um, it's a small town in the Detroit area. Um, that's on the, I always like to say it's on the edge of rural and suburbia, so it's about 45 minutes to an hour north of Detroit. Um, when I lived there, you know, we were a two-stoplight town, it's one high school, one middle school, and currently four elementary schools.

So it's that, it's just that quintessential Midwest town. And, um, unfortunately, this past November, the community was shaken by a school shooting. Um, and that, you know, that rocked so many families and students and the community, um, as a whole, and, you know, being a counselor, of course, I wanted to, you know, step up and try to help out in any way I can being at a distance, uh, to support, you know, the students.

I have a lot of friends who are still back there and had kids in that building. Um, you know, when parents, my friends who got texts from their children basically saying that they're being shot at, oh my gosh. Um, and I mean, for me being in a school, being a parent, um, you know, being a community member, there are so many different levels for me to think about and choose to step into it's scary.

It's so scary. Yeah.

How were you able to support your friends and their kids? Essentially, just being there? You know, I had, uh, you know, a close friend who works in one of the elementary schools and her daughter was in a classroom that was right there. Um, and she was one that was texting and, and saying that she was scared because they were being shot at. Um, and I, you know, I just checked in with my friend, you know, asked how she was doing, you know, told her that I was sending her hugs.

I let her talk to me and just express yourself. You know, there isn't anything that I can say that is going to take away the hurt, the pain, the fear. Um, but being there and knowing that you're not alone is one of the best things that you can have. Uh, so I just wanted to be there for her and, you know, be there for the community. I reached out to the high school and some of the administrators that I was familiar with and just to let them know that we see them, we hear them, we're there for them.

Uh, that's really what makes the difference. And that's also, you know, to say about our students, our children, the same thing applies, there isn't anything that we can do to take away those scenes that they saw, those fears that they have, but to walk with them in dealing with it is what will make the difference. Yeah.

Yeah. That's very powerful. Like I know. So we had our shooting at the local King Soopers, so it hits home because it's only a few blocks away from their school. And, and I think, you know, it's really difficult when you see something. Cause we see this all the time. I mean, it's not that we're desensitized to it. I feel like we see it all the time on the news, another shooting here or there. Um, and you look at these people and you feel horrible, but when it happens in your neighborhood, um, and you're seeing these people, you know, speaking, cause they were at the store, um, you hearing names and you're hoping it's not a name you know, you finding out that, you know, people in your community who unfortunately was shot and died. Um, it's different. It is different to see you know, something you pass every day, you know?

Um, and one of the things that were really hard is that after spring break, you know, the kids had to return to school and they were, they were nervous. It was really hard. The car ride there that first day, I was like, you know, if we can just get over this hump this day, it's going to get better. You know, you'll see all your friends. And, um, but that hump was hard and it was hard to have the words to say in that car ride. Um, because you know, it is scary.

It's a fear of mine. I'm sure it's a fair most people. Yeah. But I love the way you said,  just going back to where you're going and doing it together and walking through it together. Um, yeah, there, there's something very powerful about that. I wish I had that knowledge that day that I had to drop my kids off at school afterwards. Um, but yeah, it was tough. It was really, really tough.

And if I can just, you know, share with, with you and other parents with the school counselor hat on the individuals that go into education, you know, you've heard this before. We don't go into education for the money. That's not, not what we're getting out of it. We're not getting prestige as you can look in any of the newspapers and media. Um, but we're going into this for the kids. And if you talk to any educators, when they talk about their students, they say my kids, we take ownership of the students.

They become ours. Uh, you know, I'm lucky enough as a school counselor. I have had kids for all three years. These are my kids for three years and I will continue to talk about them as my kids. I will see,  just, this past Sunday saw two former students that are well into adulthood now.

And I said to the people I was with, oh, those were my students. Those are my kids. Even though they're adults now they're still mine. Yes. So in saying that if there are challenges at school, something as serious as a school shooting to just some of those, you know, adolescent conflicts, we have an investment in them and we are going to do anything that we can to help them out in a scary situation.

Our brain automatically is to protect them. We're trained in different things to do. We're reminded on a regular basis about what to do, but it's in our nature to take care of them. So, I know it's hard for parents cause I'm that parent too. I have to trust that the adults that I give my kids over to are going to make those good decisions.

But then as my school, counselor hat, I am that adult that will do whatever I need to do to keep those kids safe.

Yeah.  I have like two beautiful stories where, um, you know, my daughter, when she was in middle school, they had a drill, which they didn't tell the teacher was a drill. So the kids did not know it was a drill. Okay. This particular teacher did not know it was a drill. So they actually thought there was an active shooter and they hid in the classroom. And my daughter said that they were really scared. I mean, she was pretty freaked out after, but, um, but she said that her teacher, she felt like would have given her life that day, but it did show my daughter that these teachers are there.

They're on, even when they're scared. And that was really awesome. And then my son did have a lock out situation where there was something that was just happening outside that was threatening.

And there were police that had entered inside. Um, but he came home and his story was how his teacher just made them feel safe. They were there the whole day. It was the whole day. It wasn't even just an hour or drill. It was the whole day. And he felt so safe. He came home unscathed by it because he knew his teacher was there and taking care of it. So I want to thank teachers everywhere in school personnel that are in it and taking care of our kids every day.

And those are, those are great examples to share because, you know, we, we are trained, but then when you have those situations, there's things that we, we can't, um, train for the, the kids that are in our care that may have a medical emergency or may just panic, um, or, you know, have some behavior concerns because of the situation that you're having. Um, but the teacher needs to make good decisions and handle what comes at them.

And it's great to see that those teachers, you know, just took it in stride, and did what they felt they needed to do to be successful in those situations to help those kids. So sometimes just reminding our children that they can trust the teacher, the teacher is prepared. The teacher knows what to do, regardless of the, what-ifs, because we get into those. Well, what if this happens? Well, what about that? And we can play the, what-if game, but know that the teacher is skilled in making decisions and they'll make the best decision at that moment.

That brings us to all the, all the training, right? Like there are these active shooter drills. There are now all these drills. And you know, when I was a kid, I used to love fire drills. I mean, it was the time to go out and chat with your friends. I mean, we weren't like we should spend, but we did, you know, and it was like, oh, good, we get a break and I'll have to take this test. I'm going to go outside. Um, but now they have different meanings. And I think there are triggers now for kids. Um, cause we just got, you know, we just got a notification that they are going to be doing these drills.

Um, and like I said, we recently had the Marshall fires here, which destroyed over a thousand homes. Right. The fire drills are now triggers as well. Um, and also the shooting just a year ago, active shooter drills are also triggers. So some kids, you know, they say you can actually be exempt. Yeah. What's your feeling? And how do you prepare? Cause you have a young, you have a kindergartener. So how do you prepare them for these types of things, these fire drills, if you're dressed, what kind of words are you using for them?

It's funny that you bring up the fire drills because it's actually my second grader who is not a fan of fire drills, even in the daycare setting. She, the sounds of the bells, uh, the, I think the serious nature that she saw, the adults, it scared her. So we went through a period of time when she was very young, where she was worried about it. And then she kind of got less vocal about her concern and she, but she would still always tell me, we had a fire drill today.

We had a fire today. And so we had to talk through what that meant as far as a fire drill and why did we do them and the purpose of the adults doing what they needed to do and the purpose of her following the directions and everything would be fine. And so again, it's that, you know, trusting the adult that you're with, knowing where your resources are, and in those situations, it is the adult.

Um, so basically it's that being prepared, we're planning, you know, if there was ever anything to happen, they're helping, you know, what you could do to be safe. I think, you know, being age-appropriate, of course, with the language that you're using, but you know, just letting them know that this is the way that we practice just as if we were in a basketball game. Uh, if we were, you know, doing any type of sports or dance we go through and we practice things.

So they, you know, when it's that time, what you would need to do. So if we normalize it, uh, then they're, they're better at accepting it, uh, looking at the teacher for your instructions and the directions that you have, knowing that this is just part of what happens. It's nothing that's out of the ordinary. You know, my daughter always tells me about her fire drills and I tell her about my fire drills.

I play as a school counselor since I don't have a class, I play a part in fire drills. I have a walkie-talkie and I have to secure a part of the building. So I've talked to my daughter about what I do as an adult in the building to make sure that everyone is safe. So it's just, you know, your school does it. My school does it, friends of hers that go to other schools, they do fire drills. So she starting to see that it is something that's safe. It's something that's done routinely just for us to be prepared and ready if anything ever happened.

I think, you know, as professionals in a school, we know what life is like on a daily basis and what works with our kids. So we are good at putting on poker faces, um, where our brain might be moving at, you know, 10,000 miles an hour to try to assess the situation while smiling and keeping everyone calm.

Um, so I, I do think that the approach is adjusted based on the age of the students. And, um, we, we don't want to cause them more anxiety than is necessary. So of course, you know, it's like, Hey, we're going to go ahead and we're going to do this. We're going to move to this side of the room. We're going to sit down here. We're all just going to be quiet right now. Yeah. You know, instead of being the panic-stricken and I think that's part of just us being in the profession that we're in.

So what. advice, you know, would you like to tell parents out there, I love your positive spin on things, honestly, looking at that positive side, but really seeing the positive, like yeah. There are bad things that are happening right now around us, but yeah. What advice would you give parents that are just dealing with this and dealing it with it, with their kids, and when we all are, um, about moving forward and just kind of in weeks ahead.

Um, one of the biggest things that I key in on personally as an adult, but I also do with my, own kids here at home and we also have infused it into our middle school is practicing gratitude. Gratitude is an opportunity. See the good in things. And it is training our brain because if you look into it, our brain instinctually picks out negative aspects. It's part of our survival skills.

It is to prepare us for those negative things happening again, that we don't, you know, step on that landmine. Um, but we need to train our brain to not just see those negative things, but also to see the positive. And it's to pull that out, say, you know, appreciated during this time of the pandemic that we got to have family game night, um, to really pick those positives out is really important for all of us.

So that practicing gratitude, I have encouraged my own family at night when we have our dinner. What was one positive thing that happened to you today? Or for my littlest one? I say, what's one thing that you liked about today. Yeah. And it can, you know, I don't have any requirements on it. I let them just be free with it. So some nights it's silly, some nights it's, you know, just a really small thing. And some nights you're like, wow, that was insightful. Um, and my, my own kids, they have come to like it and talk about their day and pick out the good things.

My students at school, I just had this conversation with a young lady. And at first, you know, at first she said, nothing good happened yesterday. And it was like nothing. And she sat there and thought about it for about 30 seconds. And then she's like, oh, well, I got to see my cousin. And then, oh, I got to see my older sister and oh, we got to do this. And when you kind of take that breath and really look at what you did, all of a sudden it changes your, your mindset and your mood.

And now you've realized, well, the day wasn't as bad as I thought it was going to be. Right.

Yes. Yes. Because we can get so stuck in the negative. It's so easy to just focus on that, but I really love it. You know, if you just focus on the positive piece, um, how much everything can change for you and that, and that's contagious that happiness. Yes. Gratefulness is, is very contagious.

But also with like with your sons age, grouping the adolescents, um, self-esteem, you know, that the self-esteem takes so many hits during the adolescent years, but being able to pick out that I did really well on my math test or today at tennis practice, man, did I have a serve? It really gives them an opportunity to see themselves in a positive light and be in a place where they can say the positive things about themselves.

Yeah. Too many times they feel like it's bragging and they have the kind of social pressures not to brag about themselves. So when they're in a safe place at home and they can say really did something well today it's connecting with their parents and their family to get that positive praise, but also for them to feel that pride in themselves.

Right. And once again, a great reminder, because just the other day,  my son, you know, is getting an A, in one class. Right. But it's not so much getting an A in another, and I'm not going to say the grade, but not doing so well in another class. And where is my focus when he walks in the car, my focus is like, Hey, how did you do in Spanish? You know, because I'm picking the class. He's not doing well in, instead of praising the class that he is.

Right. That is awful. So thank you for this amazing reminder of, yeah. It's so easy to focus on the things you needed to improve. And that probably is not amazing for his self-esteem when we, and while he's doing great in LA. Right.

Right. And then if he feels better about himself, the, the energy or the emphasis or effort is going to flow over in other areas. So then you will start to see an improvement because maybe he's asking for more help because he's secure that it's okay to ask for help. Or he's motivated to ask for help in that area where he's struggling, because he wants that positive praise. Uh, just like he got for the class that he's doing well.

Right. Being more grateful, focusing on the positive, even when there's lots of negative. Yeah.

I love talking about kids. Um, I love working with the kids and I also kind of love giving parents that view into what's going on in the schools. Cause, I didn't realize how important it was until I had my own.

Yeah. It is. It is really nice to hear how protective the school is to our kids and how much they actually do love our kids.

Yeah. Um, but there, and it's specifically right now, there is a lot going on in the schools that aren't on the report card. Um, the social, and emotional aspects of school life right now are so important and our teachers are taking it so seriously.

Yeah. and I appreciate that so much. I know my kids have been able to talk to their teachers, you know, when they're, or, you know, my daughter will be very upset about something, you know, visibly upset and, and their teachers are not just, you know, not noticing it, they will get side, they will talk to her. They will make time for her. And, you know, that is above and beyond. I mean, it really is. So I do think, I don't know if this is a new thing you can tell me, but it does seem like teachers are definitely checking in emotionally on the kids.

We, yes, we, it's not a new thing, but to the level, we're just attuned to how the pandemic has impacted our students. And there, isn't a checklist of like, if you see this because we have students who, um, outwardly look happy, look, healthy, look productive, and we're finding out that it's a big mask. Um, so it's noticing little nuances that are giving us a clue.

Something's not quite right. We need to check in on this. Um, so we're, we're just really looking at everything and making, trying our hardest to make sure that, that our kids are happy and healthy. Uh, they missed development, um, that is key the social development. And we've got to try to make that up. I don't know if that's the right word, a way of saying it, but we need to help them push through this.

So they're learning that development maybe out of sequence or out of the timing of it. And it's just important for them, uh, not necessarily for the grade or, you know, for how well the teacher's doing and their subject. Uh, but for the fact that the student needs it. Yeah.

Yeah. I feel like kids emotionally have missed quite a bit over these last two years, and they emotionally are handling so much more. Right. So it's nice that schools are teaching that as well as their subjects.

Yeah. Except now we, uh, we recently in my district went to mask optional.

Oh, yes, yes.

And that right there, you know, on the surface looks pretty easy, whether you're feeling safe to take the mask off, if you're tired of the mask, you know, on the surface, but there are, there's so much more thought going into, do I have my mask on or do I have my mask off?

I know. Yes, yes. We just did this too. Um, and yeah, and what I find, even for myself, you know, when I go places, um, it's kinda like my kids are holding their masks and deciding every moment, maybe I'll put it on in this class because more kids, you know, it's almost peer pressure. Right. Have it, or don't have it, you know, maybe I will take it off in this class. Yes. It is interesting to see.

And at, at the middle school level, we have had students who have physically matured during this time. So their face has changed and they're aware of it, and they're not sure how their peers are going to respond to their face changing. So they're very self-aware and I'm very insecure about it. I mean, if you think about like adolescent and pimples, right. This is just a new layer of, oh my gosh, what do I look like?

And you're going to be looking at my nose. Right.

And kids that do have acne during that phase, they, you know, all of a sudden is like, oh, we have to take that mask off, you know, or braces or whatever they bring before all of a sudden it's like, oh yeah, it's definitely challenging for sure that the decision.

And I think as adults, you know, we're not quite there. So it's like, well, you choose either you want it on, or you want it off for them, but it's not that simple, just like you were saying, well, I might want it on for this class, but not that class. Um, you know, and, and maybe there's the personal safety of distance, um, or individuals who may not practice the same type of, um, personal hygiene washing hands. So you're, you're, you're thinking about all of this while you're supposed to be learning math, science, social studies, English.

I do hope that our kids, you know, come out  and be stronger, more flexible, um, and be able to see the positive when things get tough,  and maybe a silver lining of all this is that, you know, they really learn how to deal with harder situation in a more graceful way.

And to understand that, you know, adversity will come your way and you can get through it. You know, the whole, I survived the pandemic. Yeah. There's,  some truth to that. And, you know, we should, you know, take the positives from that, that we, we did find ways to survive. We, we didn't, you know, choke our family members when we were isolated.

I loved your insights and how, how to support them now. And during them, I think they're really great. And I am going to use, I'm going to ask my kids, um, you know, after school and at dinner, you know, tell me one good thing that was positive today. I'm going to reinforce that because I think that's a great one to move forward on and have open conversations and looking at the positive and helping them focus on that as they go through these times that are difficult. Yeah. Thanks. Thank you.

Thank you again for coming on our show today and just sharing all your insights. They are so helpful and I really appreciate them. Oh, it was my pleasure. 

Thank you for listening to this episode. I truly love Meredith´s perspective of focusing on the positive as we go through these challenging times. And even when adversity comes our way, know you can get through it. If you are in need of support, please join our Facebook group to continue to connect with other moms. And don't forget to follow Real Life Momz so you don't miss an episode.

 

Meredith Siget Profile Photo

Meredith Siget

Podcaster/Life Coach/School Counselor

If my husband didn’t insist that I grow up a bit, I would be a professional student. I love to learn!

I hold a Bachelor’s degree in Public Administration from the University of Michigan, as well as, a Masters degree in Public Administration - Non-Profit Management from the University of Pittsburgh. After a few years in youth prevention programs, I decided to get a Masters degree in Education - School Counseling. I am also a Nationally Certified Counselor.

While I love working with my students, I continue to develop and grow as a person, which drives me to try new things.

After years of focusing on my infertility and successfully having 2 children, I realized I needed something just for me to fill my soul. That is when I started my podcasting journey.

Through podcasting, I have met some many people and realized the importance of being part of a positive and supportive community.

I believe that we all can find purpose and joy in our life to fill our souls.
I believe that we can reach for the stars at any age and stage of life.
I believe that positive mindset shifts can make more of a difference than we can imagine.
I believe that positivity is contagious.
I believe in all of us!