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Maybe 2020 was meant to be like this!

You’re only here for a short visit. Don’t hurry. Don’t worry. And be sure to smell the flowers along the way– The Walter Hagen Story We were running as fast as we could – full-time jobs, business trips, offsites, smart devices and smart homes that controlled too much of our lives, information hit our fingertips […]

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You’re only here for a short visit. Don’t hurry. Don’t worry. And be sure to smell the flowers along the way

– The Walter Hagen Story

We were running as fast as we could – full-time jobs, business trips, offsites, smart devices and smart homes that controlled too much of our lives, information hit our fingertips from every part of the world within sub-seconds, weekend social gatherings and birthday parties, chores and back to the crazy grind on Mondays. Nannies and babysitters were at an all-time demand. The kids were as busy as they could be for their age – school, afterschool, ballet, music class, karate, play dates, swimming, tennis, horse-riding, chess, you name it…Twice a year we managed to travel long-distance for vacations, week-long vacations. That was the only time we slowed down, lounged by the beach, paying attention to the kids, listening to the waves, making amazing family memories. Meanwhile wall street was vibrant and crazy as always, real estate was soaring, the rich got richer, the poor got poorer, the society was not fair and equal to everyone. But no one seemed to slow down. No one had the time of their day to pause, think, and act.

And then the unthinkable happened. Who would have thought something as small as 120 nm (.12 μm) would change the fate of this world. Yes, that’s the average diameter of the novel coronavirus. The world came to a stand-still. We were not prepared for it. We never would have been. That was not part of the plan. We were working towards our kids getting into great universities, our kids excelling in activities that we spent hours driving them around every day, us getting that promotion, getting that raise, leading that cool new project, buying that fancy car, owning that beautiful house, and in other parts of the world, people were focused on making ends meet, putting food on their table, affording decent education to their kids, affording a roof above their head. And the virus did not see anyone any different. We were all the same. The fortunate amongst us didn’t have to worry about the next meal or next month’s salary. But there are countless households where finding another meal and finding a safe shelter was/is a challenge. I don’t have the power within me to solve that. But we have it good. We have it real good. There is no reason for any of us that have shelter and food to complain about what is going on. And then our family got hit by Covid-19. One after the other, we all fell sick. We took it one day at a time and went through some scary days. Six weeks later, we all came back to our healthy selves. We have it real good. We were healthy enough to recuperate from the sickness. A lot has happened within me. I have re-engineered myself to think about life differently.

I have appreciated the time I have with my kids and spouse more than ever. No other generation has had the opportunity to spend such quality time with their kids while they are being homeschooled amidst this chaos. The first two months were hard. We were adjusting. Kids too. I have accepted that it’s okay for my kids to be bored. They play in the backyard, they have learned to garden, learned to cook, learned sewing, gotten extremely creative with art projects, my 2nd grader is homeschooling her preschool sister, we have dinner together every day, we go on impromptu walks in the neighborhood, we roller skate, bike around. It’s been incredibly grateful to watch my kids grow up so closely. This is going to go on for another 6+ months. I am not dreading it. I am thankful for the times I get to spend with my family. In the end, what matters is the perspective we are gaining from this unplanned and unexplainable adventure we are all in.

Life will get back to normal, slowly but surely. Infrastructure everywhere will change. Schools, workplaces, restaurants, hospitals, airports, everywhere. We will get on planes to go on vacations, go visit our families, go on business trips, close those billion $$ deals, go to our friends’ wedding, and much more. But what needs to happen internally, is for us to gather the strength and accept that we seldom control our lives like we think we do and that’s okay! We could all use a bit more kindness and be a bit more grateful in this largely helpless world that we are in today.

You’re only here for a short visit. Don’t hurry. Don’t worry. And be sure to smell the flowers along the way

– The Walter Hagen Story
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