It wouldn’t be shocking to say that shame is one of the most damaging emotions we can feel. Feeling badly about ourselves shuts us off from the world. We are isolated and silent and of no threat or use to our world. The moments that I remember shame the most are when someone has said something to me intending to cause me shame. Now when I think of them, I just feel mad and a little remorseful that I didn’t have a shame filter installed earlier.
As this pandemic has evolved through our year, I have become aware that there are many opinions on what choices we should and shouldn’t make when it comes to the public health and our private health. And these sticky areas are fraught with shame pot holes. People having guests over to their house when the government said it was verboten. Scolding words of shame were thrown about.
Now as things are lifting, we are still wearing our masks into the world, but our homes and choices on who will visit or have visit us is strictly our business. Provided we also give people disclaimers of our unmasked events. Perhaps it’s a little like telling your lover who you’ve had unprotected sex with. But unless we can test ourselves in front of one another, we have to be resigned to mistrusting each other. It’s nothing personal.
So be it ! But I can say this much, I will not be ashamed for allowing my daughter to have a play date. The little girl who was trapped at home without her friends was beginning to suffer from depression. I felt it would be cruel to keep her quarantined any more. That was my choice as her parent. The mother rule has always been to warn other mothers if your child has been sick. I will offer all mothers the information that we’ve had unmasked play dates and let them know I won’t be mad if they choose to say no.
But I will refuse to feel ashamed if my choice for my family doesn’t fit with your needs and choices for yours. And that goes for everything beyond this Covid-19 pandemic. Because as mothers and managers, we retain the right to make bad decisions as well as good ones. But they are our decisions to make.
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