'Gratitude and appreciation': Celebrating Mother's Day amid a pandemic

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- This year, Mother's Day will be different. It's not only a time to celebrate moms but appreciate the workload they've faced and continue to face during the novel coronavirus pandemic.

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Jennifer Gatchalian out of San Ramon has a two and a half-year-old son and captured several videos of her working on her laptop, next to her son playing or learning.

"It's hard because all the weight is on your shoulders. You just don't have the same freedom that you had before," Gatchalian said.

She said she can clean up, but 30 minutes later, the same mess will be made.

"You just don't have the option to call anyone. Not even bring him to grandma and grandpa who are down the street because you don't want to put them at risk," Gatchalian said.

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Gatchalian recommends that moms and dads embrace the mess.

"Accept the mess. Those dishes aren't going to pay your bills. You really just have to take a deep breath and say, 'it's ok to give my kid some ice cream right now,'" Gatchalian said.

Licensed psychotherapist and author of the "The Love Fix: Repair and Restore Your Relationship Right Now," Dr. Tara Field, says self-care is the most important thing mothers need right now.

"The hardest thing for women during this time is to be able to carve out anytime for themselves. Your roots being done, the manicure, the one that's had the most profound effect is not having the space or the opportunity to do self-care. What are you going to do to create the environment, the circumstance so she can really do whatever kind of self-care she needs," Field said.

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She said families and children should show their appreciation by vacuuming or cleaning up without being told. Show her you're listening. This Mother's Day is not about wrapping a gift.

"If you didn't go out and buy those roses that she might not even like or a bunch of stuff, the great gift of this very unique Mother's Day is that from now on it's going to be about meaning and gratitude and appreciation," Field said.

Dr. Alison Mehta, a Psychiatrist out of San Mateo, says we need to have extra appreciation for the stress mothers are going through.

"There's a lot more pressure of women right now to keep all the balls rolling at the same time. I always tell my moms you know you gotta put your own oxygen mask on first so that you don't sink emotionally. And if that means you let a Zoom lesson for writing or math go by so that you all can take a breather take a nice shower and take care of yourself, that's the most important thing," Mehta said.'

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