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Family With Two Children Playing Board Game on The Floor At Home

COVID-19 Uncertainties: Caring for Yourself, Caring for Your Kids

Over the past weeks, we and our children have heard a lot about the novel coronavirus, COVID-19. This pandemic is historically significant, and the magnitude of it may intimidate or distress us. Fast-paced changes, 24/7 media coverage, information, misinformation, and predictions often leave us feeling uncertain or vulnerable as parents and caregivers. Children look to parents, caregivers, educators, and community members in an effort to gauge the dangers of any situation. In order to be rational and reassuring for our children, we must practice good self-care.

Keep social distancing in mind, but take a deep breath! Give yourself permission to step back. Yes, lather up with soap and wash your hands. But step back and think about caring for yourself physically and emotionally. What would that look like?

  • Get information from reputable sources such as the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
  • Be prepared and informed, but not preoccupied.
  • Take breaks from media coverage.
  • Stick with routines like preparing healthy meals, engaging in exercise, and getting plenty of rest. Predictability feels safe.
  • Reframe the way you experience cancellations. See cancellations as a gift of time. Use the time to regroup and recharge.
  • If you and your children are homebound, use the time to play a game, watch a movie, or have a dance party.

When you stay informed and prepared, your child gets the message that this is serious. When you care for yourself, your child gets the message this is manageable. Positive coping is having the awareness that you’re facing a challenge and the knowledge that you can handle it.

Your child can:

  • Wash their hands.
  • Cough into a tissue or their elbow.
  • Get plenty of rest and eat healthy.
  • Talk to you about worries or concerns.
  • Draw, journal, or distract themselves when feeling overwhelmed.
  • Take a walk in nature.
  • Play every day. Children release tension and master experiences through play.
  • Laugh every day. Silliness boosts the immune system.

These are serious times, but we must keep our perspective and care for ourselves and our children.

CHKD is pleased to be your partners in parenting and to provide guidance and support as we navigate this collective challenge together. Find more information about COVID-19 at

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About Michele Tryon, CCLS

About Michele  Tryon, CCLS Michele Tryon, CHKD community outreach coordinator and parent educator has worked with children and families for 30 years, providing services in the hospital, home, school and community setting. Michele is a Certified Child Life Specialist, a Certified Positive Discipline™ parent educator, a nationally recognized trainer/consultant for Nurturing Parenting Programs™ and co-author of The Nurturing Program for Parents and Their Children with Special Needs and Health Challenges©.