If you drive by the home of Anaheim police woman Erin Moore on Mother’s Day, you may see her with her three boys playing hopscotch.
Many bad things have come out of the COVID-19 pandemic, but this story is a little different.
As challenging and rough as some of the pandemic’s burdens are, getting the chance to be a stay-at-home mom hasn’t been a burden for Moore.
“My boys are awesome,” Moore said of her 11-, 10- and 6-year-old sons.
Since Moore has been running herd over her crew, she has had to come up with outdoor activities for the boys, who had to shelter at home with her during the move to distance learning in area schools.
With soccer fields and playgrounds closed, Moore introduced her boys to the sport of hopscotch.
“It’s really helping them with their footwork,” Moore said of her soccer-mad boys.
Not that it’s all playtime and games.
“The hardest part is Google Meet and Zoom,” she says of the computer applications used for distance learning. “I’m not very tech savvy. Then everything has to be turned in on-line, so that’s a transition.”
So is the chance to devote almost all her attention to her children. Although she had been working from home at the start of the health crisis, Moore recently switched to a later patrol shift, which allows her to be more involved with the boys during the day — albeit while sleeping less at night.
A typical day, she said, begins with the smell of pancakes, which are the specialty of her 10-year-old budding chef.
If Mom is already up, he may try his hand at hash browns. And always fresh fruit.
After school work, Moore and the boys spend time outside to burn off the excess fuel boys will build up in the course of a sheltered-at-home day. That can be soccer in the front yard, races up and down the street or a game of hopscotch.
When Moore’s law enforcement husband, Hollis, returns from work, “we try to do something family oriented,” Moore said.
Throughout the day, she manages to deal with the requisite emails and text messages and other job-related work or learning.
“I like to be as knowledgeable as possible,” she said. “It’s a lot of hats I’m wearing right now.”
Moore has also had stints as a classroom mom and on school site councils.
Then it is off to work.
An 18-year veteran of policing, the last 15 with Anaheim Police Department, Moore recently became the second female sergeant currently with the department. She transitioned back to patrol duties for the first time in four years.
In her diverse career, Moore has also worked undercover, burglary and theft, tactical negotiation and recruitment, among many units.
Moore admits it is taking her a minute to acquaint herself with all the new bells and whistles on patrol cars, but she is enjoying getting back into the swing.
“I love being out and with the community and the freedom,” she said.
As a supervisor, Moore said she is getting accustomed to not being the first on scene. However, as a former negotiator, Moore is good at analyzing and working through family dynamics.
“For me, I really like poring through the issues and stopping things from happening again or getting worse,” Moore said.
She is able to bring her mom skills to the job, particularly when she deals with often broken and damaged families and children needing guidance and support.
“Everything I stand for at home extends to the job,” Moore said.
With time off for maternity, Moore said, “I felt I was in constant rebuilding.”
As a result, she says, “It’s taken a little longer to be promoted through the department.”
However, Moore said, it is well worth it.
“It’s important to take time for family,” she said.
For women who may be hesitant about the burden of being a mom and a cop, Moore has this advice:
“I say, live life with no regrets. All things are possible. Don’t limit yourself. One of the worst things for me would be to look back and say, I wish I would have.”
Although the days may be long and the nights and sleep shorter, there are worse things than waking up to pancakes.
And not just on Mother’s Day.