Teens, Do Mom A Favor And Keep Track of Your Own Masks, Please

I realize that 2020 has been the year no one asked for. Things have gone from horrible to worse and there isn’t a person out there who is shocked any longer. In fact, I saw a sign the other day that said “It’s 2020 everywhere.”So much better than the saying, “It’s five o’clock somewhere,” don’t you think?

I believe that the moms of the world are taking the brunt of it and I can say that because I am a mom, and I talk to a lot of other moms and dad. We carry the bulk of the mental load when things are normal. Adding a global pandemic into our daily lives has pushed us to the edge and rightfully so.

Teens need to manage their own masks. (Twenty20 @TonyTheTigersSon)

Moms don’t need one more thing to worry about

In addition to worrying about absolutely everything and everyone, we have now taken on the title of Germaster. Along with making sure we have hand wipes, sanitizer, keeping our teens away from large crowds, we are also the mask keepers.

I, for one, am really sick of it.

Of course I want my three teenagers to stay safe and be able to get out a bit. In my home state of Maine, it’s been rare I’ve seen anyone without a mask since April. And I’m pretty sure that’s because the mothers of the world are reminding everyone to mask up.

A few days ago my kids wanted to go to dinner and sit outside to eat. On our way they asked if we could stop at the store to get some things.

I thought it was a glorious idea and was pleased to have my kids want to spend some extra time with me. When we pulled up to the restaurant, I realized that I was short a few masks. I keep them in my purse, which is where I tell my kids to put them when we leave somewhere. This way, I know where they are and can bring them in the house and wash them every few days.

One day we were short on masks and I lost it

But on this day, we were short. My kids were mad at me about it and I absolutely lost it.

How has keeping track of the damn masks become another thing that I have to worry about not just for myself but for everyone? I mean, it’s harder than keeping track of the tiny socks my kids used to wear and it’s driving me nuts.

Thank God the place we were eating had some disposable ones and I was able to go in and get some so we could eat, but if they hadn’t I would have had to make (yet another) trip to the store to buy more, or we would have just gone home.

I grabbed the masks and got back in the car to dole them out, and I went to a bad place. First of all, I spotted two masks rolling around on the car floor because apparently it was too hard to put them in the purse that’s always right next to them.

My kids are old enough to take care of the stuff they need

But also, my kids are old enough to be the keeper of their own masks. I shouldn’t have to remind them– they are seventeen, fifteen, and almost fourteen years old. How hard can it be? There’s no reason for them to leave the house empty handed. I can barely make it to the car without forgetting something when times are normal.

I told my kids that from now on, if they don’t have a mask, they can stay in the car because I simply don’t have the bandwidth to take on one more thing. I mean, I’m so tired I forget where we are driving to half the time, much less have the energy to worry about where the hell everyones masks are.

“Oh, and it’s your responsibility to clean them too. Just throw them in the washing machine and take them out when they are done. It’s not hard!” Of course they thought I was overreacting and I making a huge deal of a small thing.

The thing is, for over six months moms of the world have been wiping down groceries. We’ve been tuned into the news. We’ve been wondering if we should send our kids back to school. We’ve been trying to keep our teens at home. We’ve been worrying about our careers and financial futures. We’ve been worked down to a tiny nub and we have nothing left.

Teens of the world, it’s your turn to take on a slice of the action. You can keep track of your own mask. Please, for the love of all things holy, your mother will thank you if you know where your face covering is before you ask your mom to drive you somewhere that requires one.

It’s a very small thing you can do that will make mom incredibly happy. Please, take control here and give her energy for other things. Like, how she’s going to get through the rest of 2020.

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About Katie BinghamSmith

Katie Bingham-Smith lives in Maine with her three kids. She is a Staff Writer at Scary Mommy, shoe addict and pays her kids to rub her feet. You can see more of her on Facebook and Instagram .

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