The Obama family is getting a little stir-crazy during quarantine, but Michelle says that they’re fighting through it. She revealed on ‘The Michelle Obama Podcast’ how Sasha and Malia are coping.
The boredom of quarantine has been getting to the Obama family, Michelle Obama confessed on the August 5 episode of her podcast. But they’re trudging through the doldrums, just like the rest of the United States, as we enter yet another month of the coronavirus pandemic. The former first lady revealed that their key to “staying sane” throughout their time at home is sticking to a routine. It may not be glamorous, but it’s doing the trick!
“Barack and I, we’ve lived outside of the norm of regular life for quite some time and what we learned early on in the White House is that, in order to stay sane and to feel like the human that you once were, is that you have to have a schedule and a routine that’s pretty lock-step,” Michelle explained during her conversation with former NPR anchor Michele Norris. “Schedule has been key, and having a regular dinner time. And I’m finding that in quarantine, we look forward to that.”
Michelle and Barack’s two daughters, Sasha and Malia, were sent home from their college campuses when the COVID-19 crisis began. Malia, 22, was finishing up her third year at Harvard, while Sasha, 18, was enjoying being a freshman at the University of Michigan. In Spring, they were forced to switch to online classes. They’ve remained at home with their parents in Washington, DC, ever since. To avoid too much togetherness, the Obama family has their schedule down perfectly.
“Barack’s in his office, making calls, working on his book. I’m in my room. The girls are on their computers,” for most of the day,” Michelle explained. “Sometimes we’re outside, if the weather permits, but we’ve developed this routine of, you know, we don’t really worry about seeing one another in the day. Right around five o’clock, everybody comes out of their nooks.”
Michelle confessed that there’s been somewhat beneficial for the girls to spend this time at home. “It’s an unburdening for them,” their mother explained. “You know, I don’t know if they’ve articulated it. But there is a calm in them. It’s almost like — they needed the world to stop a little bit. They didn’t realize that they were, that the world they were on and the way they were living it, was so treadmill-like, so fast and furious. Because it was all they ever knew.”
It’s bringing the family closer together than ever before. They do puzzles together, and play cards. “Barack has taught the girls spades, so now there’s this vicious competition,” she said. “They wouldn’t have sat down, but for this quarantine, to learn how to play a card came with their dad.” Michelle confessed that she does believe she’s suffering from a form of “low-grade depression,” though. “Dealing with all of this change we’re experiencing isn’t always easy and it is not always comfortable. But what I’ve learned is that this kind of solitude can be revealing — almost healing.”
The Michelle Obama Podcast airs Wednesdays on Spotify.