Hiding the Fear

Celia Ross, a mother and listener is struggling to explain today’s political climate to her children.


Celia Ross tries to follow the philosophy of “talk less, listen more.” Yet, she struggles. She struggles with the balance of knowing when to say something and when to listen. Sometimes, she knows she needs to speak up and say something. Other times, she knows she needs to open her ears.

“You can talk yourself into a frenzy, when really, if you sit back and listen or breathe, you can avoid some of the stress or the panic or the aggravation,” she said.

She wants to get everything done that needs to get done, but the world is distracting her.

She’s thinking about herself. She’s thinking about her future.

She’s thinking about her kids. She’s thinking about their future.

One is in third grade and the other in kindergarten. She doesn’t know how much she’s supposed to shield them from. She’s aware that children are becoming more and more aware.

“It’s really hard to frame this in what’s really going on,” she said. “I think kids hear snippets here and there and so [I’m] trying not to [let them] feed into the fear. I don’t want them to be afraid, but I think some kids are definitely taking that away from some of the conversations they hear.”

Parents have shared with her their children’s thoughts.

“I hear parents saying, ‘Oh, my child is worried that they’re gonna get kicked out of country. Someone told me at the Y that their daughter said, ‘I wish I was a boy because I heard Donald Trump doesn’t like women.’”

Ross is doing the best she can. She knows that parents have gone through this before.

“You have to take hope that the world’s been around for a long time. I saw a political cartoon [about] having hope, because there were moms during the war who had the same fears. There were moms during the Cuban missile crisis, and so trying to keep the fear from the children.”