(Originally posted on Jan 31, 2021)
A little background: For those of you who don’t know me personally, I keep my personal life private. I am also hesitant to display my successes and achievements on social media. While my kids aren’t in the same classification, they are definitely blessings I protect from the barrage of negativity that can unconsciously arise by sharing their lives with the world. But now I have made an exception.
One night while I was busy attending to my son, my 6-year-old daughter came to me asking, “Mummy, what else can I do to make the corona virus stop other than sticking people with a needle?”. Trying to process what she was asking, I then asked, “Do you mean by giving a vaccine?”. She said, “Yes, a vaccine!”. So I did what all other crazy mothers who encourage their kids to think for themselves would do, I asked, “What do you think?”. We went back and forth a few times and the list we came up with included:
Physical Distancing (I still avoid the term “Social Distancing”)
Washing Hands properly
Using Hand Sanitisers
Wearing a Face Mask
Getting a vaccine
When I finished with my son, I came outside and saw what my daughter was doing. She said, “Mom, I wanted to keep these on the palm of my hand so I could remember what I can do to stop the corona.” I saw this poster she was making on her wall.
Forgive me for being a proud mom, but of all the professional posters I have seen to prevent the spread of COVID-19, I thought this was ingenious! Right there, 5 things we can do to stop the spread of the SARS-CoV-2 virus that was causing a global pandemic, in a visual infographic that spoke volumes. I told her, “Noura, I love this, this is so creative and informative. I want to post this on my website, is that ok?” Now to my surprise, it was her perception of what I said that amazed me more. She said, “You really like it?”. I said, “Yes!” I thought that was the end of her thinking, but no, she is my daughter. HA! She expressed that she couldn’t imagine that I would love and believe in her work so much that I would post it on my website. For her, that was the ultimate achievement! For me, my heart melted! Only words left for me, Mashaallah (Thanks be to God) and Alhamdulillah (All Praise is due to God). After homeschooling since April and making the hard decision not to send my kids back to formal schooling even though schools restarted here, this felt like a sign that we made the right choice. Encouraging creativity and providing support stems from LISTENING to those around us. Most times, listening is non-verbal coupled with what is said. Taking the time to know what our dependents really need is also important for our mental health and wellbeing, as it makes our lives easier when we learn to understand each other better. The take home messages from this: ‘Lessons learnt from a 6-year-old’
Changing our world starts with changing our mindset; what can I do to help?
Visually appealing infographics are a great method of communication
Listening and responding appropriately to others, is vital to our own wellbeing and to the wellbeing of those we love and care for.