We had our first Parent Group this week, an opportunity to share and support each other as we navigate parenting through a pandemic.
I shared Rev. Jason Seymore's "Creating Family Covenants - Parenting During a Pandemic," which tells one UU family's story about creating a covenant for this unique experience of extended home stay.
Whether we create an actual covenant at home or not, it is a reminder for me that our chosen faith is grounded in intentional community. It matters how we interact with each other and we can choose to nurture our relationships in ways that help them grow and deepen. We can also choose to respond with grace when stress gets the better of us or someone near us.
Often, we think of covenants as behavioral agreements. They are more fundamentally about relationship, an invitation to hold the needs and journey of others as they need them to be held, which might at times look different from how we wish our needs and journey to be held.
When thinking about covenants at home during a pandemic, simply asking those dear to us, "What do you need today?" is a start. It is an invitation for them to honor their experience, and possibly an opportunity for you to support them.
Leaning into nurturing intentional community, intentional relationships, first means taking care of yourself, then being gentle with yourself when you stumble. We are in uncharted waters. Grounding ourselves, when possible, in intentionality might help us feel like we can steer our experience rather than being swept along with the current.
We are all on a journey of living into our best selves, and we can choose to be gentle with ourselves and others as we are living our pandemic best selves.
Next week, we will practice giving and receiving grace as we savor Rev. Cecilia Kingman's post, "Dear Parents: It Will Be Enough." The Parent Group meets Tuesday evenings, 8:15-9:15pm. zoom.us/j/817388428 or phone 646-558-8656 and enter Meeting ID: 817 388 428.
Tracy Breneman, CUUC Religious Educator