Last year was tough. However, there were a lot of good things that came out of the Pandemic. It gave people the opportunity to revaluate what is important to them. I know for me personally, the measures taken in Canada made working from home a possibility where it had been considered impossible before.
Knowing that I would be working from home part of the time I took a risk and I did not enrol my Son in grade 1 at his local Waldorf school. On the one hand this was a huge leap of faith, because I didn’t know how long my job would be remote. On the other hand it seemed like the only sane thing to do. I mean who sends their kids away from them when they could catch a communicable disease that could give them or you severe lung damage and possibly result in death?
There is a lot of insanity in the way that things are structured; in what we take for granted, and in how hard it is to pull away from the system. If we look back to the historical roots of education we will understand that the whole point is to train the working class to be good industrial workers. Even though the industrial revolution has passed the objective of governments within Capitalism has not. The broader policy goal is still to create workers.
However, as a mother, as a human being, I did not bring another human being into this world to be a future worker. I brought a child into this world to experience all that is good – to experience above all belong and connection and love. And maybe you didn’t think of this way, but at the base of it we all want our children to be happy. But we have been trained so much to think about their future happiness which we equate with financial security that we often give up the present. The truth is, that happiness comes from connection; and while connection requires physical closeness and emotional intimacy – it is essentially free and essentially possible for every parent and child relationship – as long as certain priorities are lived. Like P!nk I don’t think you can have it all. There are always choices to be made. And that is a good thing. We get to choose the best version of ourselves, of our happiness. While our happiness will not always look the same – it is dependent on one thing. It is dependent on our feelings of belonging and connectedness.
My point is that when there is a global pandemic out there; a communicable disease – we can make choices that prioritize being together, minimizing our financial outlay. I do acknowledge we can’t all work from home – sometimes though, there are choices we haven’t investigated, or thought of because our culture doesn’t make them seem acceptable; like moving in with family or friends. All this is easier said than done. However, hopefully COVID has given us a reason to pause and to reflect.
My personal reflection requires me to really consider why I feel the need to send a child that I bore to school? We live in the aftermath of a colonial system; one that is racist. What kind of education can I expect for my child as a person of colour?