Remember the time before quarantine and reminders about the need for hospital ventilators constantly on television? We went to work, children went to school, and before we knew it, a week had passed. Those were the days before we ever heard of Covid-19 or Coronavirus. Now, most of us are at home either working or staying put to be safe. Sheltering at home makes each day feel like weeks. March, 2020, and the madness it brought, seemed to never end. But if we are still here today, then we got through that month somehow and we will get through this one as well.
So Many Things Have Recently Changed
Not much in our lives are familiar these days. We find ourselves home schooling our children, social distancing, sanitizing everything we can think of, and constant handwashing. We may even be completing those jobs around the house we kept putting off due to boredom. Those are just a few examples of our present new normal. We have been given a mess to deal with in America as well as in many other countries around the world. This is a very serious and cruel disease that does not discriminate on the basis of gender, age, or social status. It is not one to take lightly and we must all do our part in getting it to go away as soon as possible. Lives depend on it. I do believe, however, that there is indeed a message to be found within the mess we have been given.
Finding The Message Within The Mess
I have heard, read and seen pictures of families involved in art activities, movie nights and game nights, working together teaching lessons to their children assigned by their teachers, having neighborhood singalongs from each their own yard, having Zoom conferences between friends, and taking virtual field trips to places they have never seen. I could go on and on, but you get the idea. Would any of this have happened if we had not been given our mess to deal with as best we could? I doubt it. Maybe there is a message for each of us to receive and take away from all of this. Maybe, just maybe, we allowed our priorities to get a little off balance and it is time to self-reflect on how we want to move forward when this pandemic is behind us.
What Can We Do After The Pandemic Is Over?
Life moved so fast in our Pre-Pandemic world that we often forgot about or made time for what really mattered. Though our intentions may have been good, many of us missed the basic priorities in life and where to focus our efforts. There is no need for finger pointing. A bit of self-assessment is all it requires. We can start by making a conscientious effort to spend quality time with our children, our spouses and/or our significant others. Years from now, when our children are adults, I believe they will remember these days and they won’t all be bad memories. They will remember the family bonding. In fact, do not be surprised if they continue to ask for more of those bonding activities long after this pandemic is over. Let us continue speaking to our neighbors and show them kindness. To the extended family we could not see or hug in person for so long, let us no longer take those visits or hugs for granted. To the elderly in nursing homes who have been so lonely, confused, and missed our visits during the quarantine, let us always be mindful of the fact that they are lonely many times and need to see family members and friends as often as possible. To our real true heroes on the front lines for us, such as all health care workers, truck drivers, restaurant owners, first responders, and others who put their lives at risk to keep us healthy, fed, educated, etc., let us never forget them and all they did for us. They were the ones who kept us going.
We Have What It Takes
We rise up in times of crisis. We discover and display the strength and determination we all have within us. We work together to survive with what we have because it is who we are. If we each discover our message within the mess and continue to improve our lives going forward because of it, then we as a nation will be better off than before. There could be a faint silver lining to be found beneath the rubble. That is why I hope we do not fully return to our old normal. A better tomorrow is what we all seek. Our children depend on it, and so do our family members, neighbors, co-workers and everyone else we live life with, including ourselves. Let us make sure the lives that were lost and continue to be lost by this horrible disease will not have been in vain. May we honor their memories by reassessing our lives and becoming better people because of it.