Not just Sam’s mom, but every parent learnt a lot about parenting in just a span of 2-3 months. From being tutors to their friends, the parents had to double up for everything even though the pressures on all were high. Some like the doctors, nurses, healthcare staff, the police, the companies backing up healthcare, delivery companies were on for extended hours. Those who were working from home, faced another stress of their employers and clients forgetting the distinction of work and off work hours. In between all this were, so many who were losing jobs or had massive cuts to their salaries due to the near collapse of economies world over. Some mothers especially those where both parents did not have an option of work from home had to just give up working as now there was no daycare or schools to take care of the children. Hotels, tourisms, airlines were the worst hit. Sam was in for a big shock when his best friend messaged him that they were moving back to India as his father had lost his job. All he could day was sulk and cry.
Like all parents, Sam’s parents too became his guide and friend in adjusting to the online school. They started replacing their kitchen shelves with healthier food and explained to Sam why he should not be munching on chips and chocolates. Sam understood his mistake and now if he wanted a chocolate, he would ask his parents to get one. No credits were allowed. They did not leave any stone unturned in spite of the covid pandemic waging a war on all fronts. As the days passed, working became more stressful and demanding. They hardly knew when they would be back each day once they stepped out of their house. Sam became more understanding over time and started realizing that he had to adjust to this new normal. He was proud of his parents and did not burden them with unnecessary demands. On a lucky day when his parents could come home in time, they would either play squap or any board game. These would be times he really enjoyed.
If online schooling was a new normal, online exams were not far behind. After all, teachers too needed to know that they were on the right path. For Sam, this was a cakewalk. He hated writing and the online exams meant no writing. These were just multiple choice questions or typing for a few questions which he absolutely relished. He scored good marks in all and was able to persuade his parents to buy him a few books from his favourite shop Borders when the lockdown relaxations eased.
The schools would soon close for the summer vacation. Every summers he would join some summer camp. Thankfully his mom choose not to enroll him for any of the online camps. She was worried about the extensive screen time and her fears were confirmed when she got his annual eye check up. His number had doubled.
Summers would be the time to fly to India to his grandparents. This time due to flight restrictions neither he could go nor his grandparents could come. He missed them sorely. His grandmothers would dote on him and shower him with love whenever he went. They would cook him yummy food and he loved playing pranks on them. This summer he would miss all that.
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