Occasionally, I feel like I have been hoodwinked. I knew becoming a parent would have both of its challenges and rewards but no one prepared me for this! Who can I be mad at for not preparing me for this? Curse you Doctor Spock- you left out this chapter. Yes, as a parent I have all of the usual worries, concerns, doubt and fears. Am I doing a good enough job? Was I too strict? Was I not strict enough? Did I hug them enough today? Did I smother them? What is that bump on his head? Will it be okay? These questions and a myriad more invade a parents mind at random times throughout the day. But it’s okay, these thoughts are typically balanced with the fact that being a parent is wonderful and that I wouldn’t want it any other way. The pride and proudness usually outweigh the What Ifs. Usually I said. This is 2020, the only thing usual is that everything is unusual. As I glance at my peacefully sleeping children I am caught off guard by the What Ifs- the balance is off, the scales are tipped and I am unprepared. As I watch them drift into a sleep I am unprepared for imagining children being raised in a pandemic. I was not prepared for picturing my children wearing face masks throughout the day. I was not prepared that hugging a friend would be a cause to pause, I was not prepared for having Worry be a constant state of mind for me or them. There are so many What ifs that tug at my heart strings that it is a challenge to not let the What ifs win. But as I have said before PARENTS ARE SUPERHEROES. That is not what we do, for our children- we can’t let the What Ifs win. There is no magic. We educate without alarm, we hug more often and do what we can to give our children a sense of normalcy in a world that has flung normalcy out the window. We keep them as safe as we can while still letting them act like children.