On 15th March 2020, Metro Manila was placed under community quarantine which later escalated to a Luzon-wide enhanced community quarantine. This means people are on stricter home quarantine, supplies are regulated, transportation is suspended, and more uniformed personnel are around to impose these measures.
Most people are either bummed that they can’t go out and about, worried that they’ll lose their job, or scared of not knowing when things will go back to normal.
These are perfectly valid reasons to be antsy. We are all concerned about our family, our kababayan frontliners, and the future of our whole country. There is a lot of uncertainty because we don’t exactly know what the future holds – when this pandemic is going to end and whether we can contain the virus or not.
But instead of worrying, these first-time moms leveled up their home quarantine game.
To shed light on the positive impact of the enhanced community quarantine, Mommy Divine Grace Enriquez-Datoc gathered insights from the members of First Time Moms PH, a community of over 19k first time moms in the Philippines.
Ano-ano mga magandang naidulot ng enhanced community quarantine? Narito mga sagot ng ating mga First Time Moms.
Less Walang gala, less expenses.
This is by far the top benefit of enhanced community quarantine. With everyone required to stay at home, there is a lesser chance of having unnecessary purchases and eat outs.
Many office-based workers have shifted to a work-from-home setup and with that, they are relieved from spending on public transportation. Mommy Athea Santos and her hubby transitioned to working-from-home and now they don’t have to spend money on food allowance because they now home cook their meals.
Mommy Divine also points out that with the delayed logistics of online shopping apps, people are more adamant about checking out their carts, so think twice before you “add to cart”! Mommy Jolly Ann Malicon, Mommy Grace Halili, Mommy April Cardosa Dionela completely agrees with this.
Healthier home-cooked meals for the newbie health-conscious
With limited access to grocers and markets comes the intentional consumption of supplies. Many moms used to rely on food delivery services for their convenience, but now mommies have been rediscovering their talent in planning and cooking healthy meals.
While working from home, Mommy Athea Santos took this opportunity to enhance her cooking skills. Here are a few dishes she made the past few days while on enhanced community quarantine.
Veggie fried rice
Sweet and sour kikiam
Camote with cinnamon
Spicy adobong mushroom
Cheesy marble potato with ham and bacon
Sotanghon with broccoli and squid balls
Mommy Dianne Tayao noticed a shift in the eating habits of her family members who used to eat a lot of salty, oily and meaty dishes. While practicing good hygiene prevents transmission of the virus, we must also strengthen our own body’s line of defenses which consists of the physical barrier (skin) and the chemical barriers (sweat, mucus, immune system). We can do that by providing our body the right building blocks coming from real nutritious food. Knowing that what you eat greatly influences your overall health, they now have been preferring soupy vegetable dishes. Talk about hitting two birds with one stone. That’s increasing fluid intake and nutritious food in one!
Unli-bonding with kids
Many of our working moms are so thankful for this opportunity to bond more with their kids. Time off from work and hours-long commutes means more time for the family.
Mommy Phoebe even gets an extended maternity leave because of the enhanced community quarantine. That means more time to recover and more time to get to know her newborn baby.
I myself have been able to spend more intentional time with my son. We get to dance Zumba, chase butterflies in the front lawn, and play with his knobbed cylinders which he absolutely loves. In the video below, Lucas is learning basic math concepts like recognizing different sizes, as well as strengthening his fine motor skills, specifically the pincer grasp.
Mommy Kwin Basilio-Fortaleza feels she has built a deeper connection with her husband and her child. She has discovered that they have different sides – they being makulit, their pranks, their different perspectives, and many more! It may sound crazy but that’s the beauty of building your relationship with your child. You get to see all their quirks, but you love them even more.
Mommy Jolly shares that she takes this opportunity to model good values to her child. She shows how they can help their less fortunate friends by sending out their extra supplies like rice and other essentials.
Mommy Gem was able to witness her baby’s first syllable. “Papapa.”
More time to clean the house
Amidst the chaos around the world, we can still create order and harmony by keeping our house clean.
Ever thought of that long overdue changing of curtains, decluttering of clothes, cleaning of cabinets, sun-soaking (kula) your clothes? Well, this is the perfect time to do all that. Staying at home gives you so much time to revamp your housekeeping game. This is also a great opportunity to teach your husband the basics of housekeeping. *wink*
Mommy Grace shares she has finally cleaned up her cabinets and washed her curtains. Mommy Kwin is taking one day at a time with her long-overdue household chores. Mommy Arra Solis of Rookie Mommy PH also felt that urgency and high energy to clean their house.
Rekindling the flame with hubby
Once a child enters the family, couples tend to get caught up in the responsibilities and become autopilot – child care, work, housekeeping, REPEAT – that they often forget to spend quality time with each other.
With more free time at home, now is the time to rekindle the flame of your relationship. You might discover things you never knew about each other.
Mommy Josieann Makiling Narvadez noticed her hubby is more diligent than her with doing cloth diaper laundry. That’s 30 cloth diapers a day! And instead of sleeping the whole day, her hubby actually cleaned their whole house.
Mommy Choon Joaquin shares a similar discovery. With her husband being home all the time, he observed how much work Mommy Choon does from childcare to housekeeping. Now he does all the housework, leaving Mommy Choon to do more me time. Cue in: Sana all!
Thanks to enhanced community quarantine, mommy Gem Mercado shares they are spending more “babe time” like how they were before they were married.
Learned to watch the news
This is such a gamechanger for Mommy Diane who is very fond of watching Korean drama and Netflix series. By watching the news, she has become more aware of what is happening around the world.
Could you imagine not having to wake up early and not having to think about work? Now that equates to more free time!
While others are deep-cleaning their house, bonding with their kids, improving their cooking skills, some families preferred to get some well-deserved rest.
With work suspended, Mommy LA Canlas and her family gets some well deserved rest.
Our breastfeeding moms, Mommy Athea, Mommy Grace and Mommy Phoebe, shares na hindi lang unli tulog nagagawa nila, pati unli dede! Mommies get to rest, while baby gets to strengthen his immune system by taking up antibodies from their mommy’s breastmilk. The best part of that is no bras for 1 month!
It is no doubt that there is less pollution in the air because of the abrupt reduction of running vehicles and factories. Countries around the world have been reporting blue skies and crystal clear rivers, all of which are because of the preventive measures being implemented to prevent community transmission of the virus.
Here is a shot of the skyline from Mommy LA’s office in Bonifacio Global City (BGC).
Just look at how the sky cleared up after 6 days into enhanced community quarantine.
No water interruption
NEWS FLASH. Apparently, Maynilad can provide constant water supply.
Mommy Divine, a resident of Tondo, Manila, has been experiencing water interruptions from 9 am to 5 pm. It has been so difficult for her and her family to tightly regulate water consumption from kitchen use to bathroom use.
Ever since Metro Manila has been placed under community quarantine, Maynilad has extended bills payment and probably water interruptions as well which is what Mommy Divine has experienced. Thank you, Maynilad!
Having reflections so deep that you’ll come out as a brand new person after this pandemic
With all that is happening around us, it is easy to get caught in all the negativity it brings. Mommy Clarence Kaye has realized that we can actually live a simple life with all her needs easily accessible from their backyard mini farm with growing vegetables and free-range chicken.
Simply looking up, you’ll see fresh mango up in the tree. Can you count all the mangos you see?
When you look down, there are free-range chickens running about.
In addition, Mommy Clarence shares that she tries to strengthen her faith by accepting things that are out of her control and by accepting the fact that things go out of hand. With that, she believes that like all other adversities in life, this too shall pass.
True enough that with limited access to supplies, we tend to realize that we already have everything we need right in the comforts of our home. We become more appreciative of what we have and hone into the important aspects of life which are family, health, and relationships.
So take this opportunity to slow down, reset, and reflect on your life. Simply take one day at a time. Be concerned, empathize with, and extend help to our COVID-19 warriors, both frontliners and patients. Stay updated with the news but avoid overthinking. If it’s affecting your emotions, take a step back, and breathe.
One thing for sure, we cannot control the situation.
You know what we can control?
Our reaction to it.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Hey there! Meet Gisela Mirandilla, a community manager and engager with a passion for bringing out people’s truest potential through an engaging online community. Prior to her freelancing business of social media marketing and community management, she was serving a C-level executive. Gisela also helps businesses connect and convert their target customers through in-depth social listening, content creation, content multiplication across social media platforms, and content strategy. During her free time, she would read books about parenting, nutrition, personal development, marketing, and entrepreneurship. With that, she plans to start an online book club series in First Time Moms PH, a Facebook support group for first-time moms in the Philippines.