It’s safe to say no one anticipated spending so much time with family this year. The pandemic brought us closer than ever before—in a good way (mostly). These bonus hours have brought many silver linings.
More time with family! Let’s be real, it hasn’t all been unicorns and moonbeams. But being home has taught us to navigate a crisis together, and the bright spots seem to far outweigh the darker moments. Help with trigonometry homework? Did I even take trigonometry in high school? (No.)
Things we now realize: Our respect and gratitude for our kids’ teachers is infinite. The ability to be with older parents when they need us most is priceless. The nightly Netflix “have we already seen this?” journey with our partners is oddly comforting.
One thing’s for sure: We’ll never forget that our expanded family time has allowed us to celebrate moments—small and large—together, in daylight, not just in the bleary wee hours of the morning or at the end of a long day.
Here, association pros share some of the benefits of additional family time during by the pandemic.
Tarah Remington Brown
Executive Vice President, Kansas Academy of Family Physicians
So many things. My youngest learning to ride his bike; yard work and house maintenance; my kids’ imaginations growing; cooking new recipes; getting closer with my mom and sister; family game nights; a socially distant, secluded vacation in the mountains; lots of reading; lots of nature and outdoor time; seeing my children be so resilient.
Lowell M. Aplebaum, FASAE, CAE
CEO and Strategy Catalyst, Vista Cova
Extra snuggle time with the munchkins.
Mickie Stivers Rops, FASAE, CAE
President and Principal Consultant, Mickie Rops Consulting
My daughter’s summer internship was switched to virtual, so not only did I get to spend more time with her (it was going to be in another city), I got to see and hear her develop into a professional. She was in the next room, so I could actually hear her presentations and interactions with her peers, boss, and boss’s boss. And I got to have lunch with her every day and talk about her experiences and offer advice. I feel so lucky to have gotten that unique and special experience.
Brian Van Norman, CAE
Senior Vice President, American Case Management Association/CGi Results
I’ve been able to work remotely so I can spend more time helping my mom after losing my dad just before COVID.
Rodneikka Scott, CAE
Director of Membership, Endocrine Society
Being able to spend more time with my son and husband has been the most wonderful thing.
Editor’s Note: These responses were compiled by Sheri Jacobs, FASAE, CAE, CEO and president of Avenue M Group, in response to a question she posed on her Facebook page asking her friends and colleagues to share their COVID-19 silver linings. We thank them for sharing them with us.