By Wanda Boulware
Special to the AFRO

The Coronavirus has literally restructured every facet of life worldwide, as well as set the mood in the home of Lakeisha Arthur. Her stance is to go with the flow and count your blessings, and understand that this too shall pass. 

This single mother with three children, who works in the Fire and Police Retirement office, is also working on an undergraduate degree in accounting, with a minor in psychology.

Lakeisha Arthur with her children, Elizabeth 13, Jonah 10 and Hadassah 4. (Courtesy photo)

One of her major struggles while working at home, her children don’t always understand that she’s still working. “They want my attention when they want it,” she said. She also struggles with balancing the conversation with her children. “I want them to understand the need to stay home for safety reasons but I don’t want to overwhelm them with information; I’m trying to maintain some level of innocence concerning this matter.” She said they learn some things about the virus from social media, but she does not inundate the home with a lot of news on a daily basis.  

While everyone struggles with this ‘new normal, ’Arthur is encouraged to be more self reflective. “I’ve been able to really take stock in the blessings of my life.” She has been able to reconnect with her children and give them the quality time that working and going to school had taken from her. When asked about her initial feelings about the outbreak, she said, “I wasn’t afraid at first because I felt uninformed and believed that it would simply blow over.” But there came a moment after seeing the effects the virus has had over all, she said, “The phrase ‘life is short’ became real.” 

With that thought in mind, Arthur has been more intentional about the time she spends with her children as well as reaching out to her family and friends. Her family meals are more structured; when they come together, electronic devices are no longer welcomed at the table. As for how the quarantine has impacted other aspects of her life, she is happy to report that working from home has allowed her to maintain her income, so financially she is okay. And while she works, her children entertain themselves with Netflix, YouTube and Tik Tok videos. 

She’s also amazed at how the church has thrived during this time of quarantine. She’s been a member of Freedom Temple AMEZ since 2009. The members have been meeting through zoom conferencing and live streaming services on Facebook, and the sense of community has remained strong throughout this season.  When asked if she had any questions about the virus, Arthur said the only question she has is, “When will it be gone?” Her overall thought about this quarantine is that this can be a time for people to sit with themselves and examine their strengths and weaknesses. “This is a time when families can rediscover the things they love about each other, and learn to appreciate one another again,” she said, adding that she is encouraged by the opportunity to get back to the basics of life and the thing that matters most…family.