Dear Employer, can we PLEASE continue to work from home?

These are the words many of us have uttered countless times during the pandemic. Many of us have children at home, like so many others out there. Working from home allows us to care for not only our children, but possibly our parents, grandparents, our spouses and other family members who are unable to otherwise care for themselves, by themselves. I know I know, you say that as an employee our productivity has slowed, we are working later hours and our kids and family are in the background of our Zoom meetings. I get it. I do. We need to be present and available during what would normally be our 8-5 workday. Now our workday starts well before everyone is up including the sun and well after most businesses have closed for the day.

But, THIS is our NEW NORMAL! THIS!

This is our new normal because it is imperative that we keep our families safe and healthy. This is our new normal because we are afraid. This is our new normal because we have no childcare (most of them are closed). This is our new normal because our spouses have lost their jobs. THIS is our NEW NORMAL!

Our children are learning remotely and have one Zoom meeting after another. Our spouses are working from home also in one Zoom call after another. Oh and let’s not forget that because of these calls our internet frequently glitches. There is a lot of, “Can you hear me?”, “Sorry, we can’t see you. Can you turn on your camera?”, “Mom, I need help. I’m logged out of my class.” And the list goes on and on. It’s a wonder that we even got through the meeting earlier today without any interruptions or connectivity issues. That was one for the record books. But as we give ourselves a pat on the back for this small victory, we know that these instances of success are few and far between. But, we still try. Day in and day out.

Coming into the office, in person, everyday, seems like an insurmountable task right now. So, we ask, “Can we please continue to work from home?”.

It’s hard enough trying to get up and dressed for our 8 a.m. conference call, while also juggling breakfast, Zoom logins for the kids, and being fully prepared to share our Powerpoint presentation that we stayed up until midnight preparing for the night before.

What I can tell you is this. It will get better. While this set up is less than ideal and stressful for everyone, one thing I know is, everyone is safe and healthy.

My children and relatives are cared for and not neglected. All of the things that I wished I could do, I am able to now. I am able to have breakfast and lunch with my children during the day. I am able to observe their classes and be involved in their education outside of the two parent teacher conferences I am barely able to attend each year. I am not stuck in traffic coming and going; only to get home and continue working well into the night. How do these things help you (the employer), you may ask? It provides for:

  1. Better Work-Life Balance
  2. Less Commute Stress
  3. Money Savings
  4. Positive Environmental Impact
  5. Increased Productivity and Performance
  6. A Happy, Healthier Work Life

So, we ask. Can we PLEASE continue to work from home?

Signed,

Your Grateful Employee

Side note: I, for one, am one of the lucky ones. My job allows me the flexibility to work from home or in the office (on designated days). Not everyone is so lucky. And so, we pray for those who are teachers, nurses, doctors, or otherwise work in the medical field and all of the frontline workers who go to work each and everyday. Thank you for your service.

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Janina Roberts, M.A., LSSP, a Licensed Specialist in School Psychology married to her college sweetheart, Allen, Sr, for almost 14 years. She is a graduate of the University of Texas at Austin and Trinity University. She and Allen have two children, Allen, Jr. (7 y.o.) who is very active in sports and a loving gentle soul and Aelicia (2 y.o.), who is very independent and a spit-fire. Janina is what some would call a military brat who moved frequently. She was born in Louisiana, moved to Las Vegas, NV then Abilene, TX where she graduated high school. Janina is currently pursuing her Doctorate degree in Educational Leadership while also working full-time. She is avid party planner especially her kid's birthday parties and loves eating ice cream from Amy's. On the weekends you can find her at the track field, at basketball and football games cheering on her son, AJ.

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