We are all in the midst of change right now. It turns out a pandemic really does affect all corners of the earth. All people. All nationalities. All races and genders and ages and stages of life. So how are you coping?
I have been writing on my sidewalk with chalk, positive, happy things. I made a 7-foot tall rainbow from construction paper and taped it in my front windows. I hoped the kids would get in on it but they were utterly uninterested other than trying to figure out why I was cutting out strips of construction paper in different colors. I hopped on the “going on a bear hunt” bandwagon and stuck a llama in one of our front windows (in case a kid out there was looking for one) and tomorrow I’ll change it out for a stuffed bear. I smile and say hi to people (from 6 feet away). I have been baking. And I keep telling people “its going to be alright.” I check the news once a day and only 3 sites are on my “approved to look at list.”
I have surprised myself with my optimism. I didn’t think I was an optimist but there it is. I am amazed by some of the innovation and the support I am seeing from different communities across the world. And that makes me more optimistic. More hopeful. Don’t get me wrong, I am also exhausted, weary, anxious, scared, angry, bewildered, confused, sad, hungry, grumpy, uncertain and a whole lot more. But mostly I believe (optimistically) that we will get through this. Many of us (all?) will have scars but most of us will get through it.
And all that despite working in healthcare. Despite knowing we are probably going to run out of ICU beds and ventilators. I may not have a mask to wear at work next week. I may not have hand sanitizer to use. More people are going to die. People I have known have died already. People I have cared for. People are going to get really sick. People are going to be pushed to their limits and well beyond (they already are). Life is never going to be quite the same again for anyone. Yet…
If I were my own best friend I would probably be that annoying person who tells myself “it’s going to be alright” and then hug myself (from 6 feet away). I would ask myself how can I help others and how can we get through this together? Because providing service to others makes me even more hopeful and optimistic. I would believe it’s going to be okay because it’s what I believe. Faith. It’s been a really long time since I had faith in much, but I have it now. And I am hoping to share a little bit with you. Have you surprised yourself in any way?