Definitely now is one of those times in life when we find ourselves treading very carefully with pretty much everything that we do. We are in unchartered territory and every literal move, or not, that we make has the potential to have consequences for either ourselves or our loved ones and dire ones at that. Not a favourable position to be in, is it? Yet, here we ALL are; yes, every single one of us on the planet. How surreal is that still?! Often times, obstacles or challenges that we face in life are specific to our little corner of the world, but not in the case of COVID-19. No siree!!! Everyone gets a piece of this one, like it or not. NOT!
Some say that they knew that something was coming our way–that something had to give with the way things were going with us and our environment. Others have even predicted our present situation, years, even decades ago. Then you have the opposite end of the spectrum in individuals who blatantly ignored the possibility of a pandemic or world-wide health crisis and the need for any sort of contingency plan as it could NEVER happen–not to us, not in our day and age. Don’t we all wish that were true, but history tells us differently. Regardless of what you believe about how, when and why this virus came about or who is responsible for it, we have to deal with what is and what is, is that our lives as we once knew them have been changed dramatically from mere months ago. Words like, masks, gloves, social distancing, self-isolation, quarantine have become mainstays and day-to-day ‘normals’ have been replaced by virtual worlds or work, school, and businesses.
If you really stop and think about it, generally-speaking, our society has adapted fairly well to all of the sudden changes, albeit some people/places better than others. Considering how little time that the average person had to prepare, I think that we civilians have done a pretty okay job of picking up the pieces from the 180 degree inversion that we have just experienced. Clearly, some countries have had stronger leadership than others throughout all of this, and let’s be honest, some places are simply more equipped and/or have more resources to deal with the coronavirus and its ill effects.
For us here in Canada, it felt like we had one weekend to get used to the idea that everyday things were going to be shutting down, including some otherwise necessary public and healthcare-related services, and we were given stay-at-home orders. That was well over two months ago now, which on one hand seems like forever, yet calendar-wise has only been the turn of two pages. After all, it really wasn’t that long ago that folks began hoarding supplies such as toilet paper and sanitizer. Remember the constant constant news headlines about travellers who were stuck abroad, on cruise ships especially? And yet, on the other hand, here we are a WHOLE nine weeks later and some people are still displaced from their home base due to travel restrictions. For instance, I have a friend who is doing doctorate work in the country of Jordan. That I know of, she was due to return home here after her studies were completed this term and yet she is still there, likely with no known date of return. For her, lockdown conditions in Jordan versus Canada have been vastly different–thank goodness she is a very adaptable young lady and she is doing as well as can be expected, as are most of us given the present circumstances.
What is disturbing however is that, to date, we have lost 348 532 people in the world due to COVID-19. Unbelievable! Simply unbelievable even as I type it out. (Yesterday, I began writing this post and that number jumped by almost two thousand people since then–that’s close to two thousand people in one single day!) One life lost is one too many, yet more than one-third of a million of our total population on Earth have died. It is purely tragic and yet the word tragic doesn’t even do justice to what has happened. Families everywhere are reeling from their losses and unfortunately, more will be added to the list. The ravaging effects of this pandemic are real and personal and ongoing. So, how do we even begin to wrap our heads around, or express in words, the kind of devastation that we have seen or experienced as of late? Likely, we don’t. Instead, we are just left to feel what we feel (which is likely many emotions combined) and to do our best to move forward one day at a time and support one another in the process as best we can.
So, as some places around the world begin to lift some of their bans and restrictions, please remember to proceed with caution. The phasing in of goods, services and activities is NOT an open invitation for us to return to our past life wherein no precautions were necessary. That existence is no longer I’m afraid, and while we are all anxious to resume some semblance of normalcy, myself included, we have to be aware that the coronavirus is far from being resolved. In fact, its wrath continues to lurk around every corner and we need to be aware of it for our sake and for the sake of others who are still very vulnerable. New findings, such as the effects of the virus on children, are being discovered daily and we need to remain vigilant about all of the practices that we have recently been schooled in, so that we can try to flatten the curve and reduce the numbers of those who are falling prey to this unjust pandemic. If you do not have to return to work or school in lieu of recently launched phasing-in programs, staying at home and limiting outside contact is still the best course of action that we can all take. For now, at least. My belief is that if we can stay put for the short-term and continue to adhere to safe practices, which sadly could be months still, it WILL pay off for us ALL in the long-run with respect to being able to ‘recover’ from COVID-19–both ourselves and our economies. We cannot help to boost economic times if more and more of us become sick and die, can we? And, who knows, if our patience persists, maybe our ‘new’ normal in life might actually be better than we think it could be. Usually, there is some good to come from tragic circumstances, even though it may be difficult to see or understand in the here and now. The power of positive thinking, right?! Imagine, how much good energy that we could collectively harness if we could all try to think positively over the next little while–that would be 7.3 BILLION POSITIVE VIBES (or prayers, whichever you prefer) sent out to the universe, with a few extra special ones for those whom we have lost.
Stay safe & stay well my friends, as WE carefully move forward together! Yes, together. 🙂