In China, students have been out of school since last year. I don’t want to imagine what is going through the minds and hearts of people in Italy where destruction and been swift. In the United States, most people I have spoken with seem very unconcerned.
I currently live in Panama City, Panama. We are on a mandatory shut down. I have heard that in the United States, this is slowly becoming the norm too: all non-essentials must close.
In The United States I have heard stories of more people getting out to exercise. I think that’s a positive for sure.
Here in Panama, you are not allowed on the streets except for your assigned 2 hours per day – and your 2 hours most likely will not match the 2 hours of your loved ones because it is based on the last number of your ID.
So what are people doing during the worst International Pandemic of our time? The only thing we can do – learning to cope.
But, I have seen something way beyond “coping”.
The Bright Side
I have seen instant changes in the people around me, suddenly able to see the bright side – some for the first time in their lives!
Why has what seemingly should be the worst time in our lives transformed into something that we will all remember forever, something that will change us forever, but amazingly, in an overwhelmingly positive way?
We have all been forced to wake up and smell the coffee for the first time in a long time. For many, it’s the first time ever.
Plenty of people have plenty to worry about but for most, it seems pretty fruitless. It’s like all of a sudden people realize that you can’t worry about the things you have no control over! It’s awesome.
So what are some of the upsides to the Pandemic?
We have been forced to get creative. Most people have totally forgotten what it’s like to dream or think of things to do when you aren’t working. Some people are still working, yes, but it’s not the same. They are home with “everyone” now. All day, all night. It’s different.
More board games are being played as a family.
For lack of sounding insane, I almost hope it lasts just long enough for things like this to become the new habits – the new way of life.
Dinners are being cooked together and eaten together. Again, just amazing how much society as a whole is too busy for this to happen normally. And now, we are thrown together out of fate – and most, are learning to really enjoy it.
Speaking of cooking. It’s a sad thing for anyone in the food industry, restaurants, etc, but on the flip side, people are finally eating healthier. They are realizing how delicious home-cooked meals can be again.
Speaking of restaurants in trouble, the outpour of support I have seen for local businesses is breathtaking. It really hits you to your core when you realize that people are actually thinking of others – thinking of other people’s families and how they are suffering.
They aren’t looking at the local businesses as businesses, but as people struggling to get by just like everyone else. People who can, have been buying gift certificates for local businesses just to keep them alive.
So what happens to a society facing the absolute worst pandemic of our times? We rise to the occasion. We overcome it. We come out on the other side better off than when we went it.Erica Leary
I mentioned earlier that I live in Panama City, Panama. Last night, we played games online with my family in The United States for a few hours. We laughed together and we all know it’s a definite repeat.
Everyone seems to be having “happy hour” HouseParty calls just so they can keep in touch and see each other’s faces.