Hi everybody. How are you doing in the midst of the great pandemic quarantine of 2020? Never have I seen so many people walking their dogs or watering their lawns just waiting for someone, anyone, to walk by so they can strike up a conversation.
From six feet away, of course.
Never in all of my forty some odd years of life have I seen anything like this. Society, life as we know it, has literally come to a screeching halt. Drive ways up and down my street have cars parked in them at the peak of day. No one is going anywhere, well, except to the grocery store. Just today I had to run and get a few necessary things and I passed people wearing bandannas on their faces for protection from the invisible enemy that has paralyzed our country. At any other time, seeing a person wearing a bandanna like the cowboys in old John Wayne movies might unsettle me, but not today. Today I passed a bandanna wearing soul and didn’t think a thing of it.
Welcome to the pandemic where masks and surgical gloves in the grocery store are completely normal.
Never has there been a time in my life span when introverts are more accommodated. You can order just about anything on line and shipping is free. There are a couple members of my family who find this to be the best news ever. Since I am an ambivert, I am not entirely unhappy that we don’t have to go to out for everything, but goodness, a person does need to get out of the house sometimes, right?? Thank the good Lord above for some gorgeous weather where I live as of late. Blue skies with just the right amount of clouds to tempt every child’s imagination.
If only our economy was as beautiful as the sky.
Every TV channel has news, news, and more bad news. Thousands sick, hundreds dying and that’s just in our country. People are losing jobs, livelihoods, watching dreams go up in smoke. So much loss. It hurts my heart to think about it.
When I look up to the clouds these days, I don’t see many airplanes. Planes full of people headed across the country to see loved ones, or a business person going to an important meeting, or excited vacationers heading to a place they’ve never been. The sky is a beautiful blue and clear of anything but the fluffy clouds.
Some of you have called or texted to ask about my husband’s job during these unprecedented times. He is a pilot for any of you who are new to my writing. It’s actually a long and compelling story of how he became a pilot and I need to write the whole affair down someday. Anyway, here we are, a family who is dependent on the tumultuous travel industry for an income.
Not just an income, but THE income for our family since I haven’t yet started to work in this new state we moved to last year. Typing that last sentence brings a deeper sense of reality to what we are facing, what so many of us are facing.
My husband and I were talking about this earlier. I wish I could say I was filled with faith during our conversation, but I wasn’t. I wanted answers he couldn’t give and assurance he didn’t have, I needed promises he couldn’t make so I would feel like everything was going to be okay. Instead he propped himself next to the counter in the kitchen while I sat at the bar and we talked about how disappointed we were in what was happening.
Does that feel real to you right now?
Do you feel let down in the losses in your own life and in the lives of those around you?
My sons are both in college and they are packing up to head home until further notice. My older son is a senior and he has no idea if he’ll see some of his friends again to say goodbye. We don’t know if there will be a commencement where he’ll walk across the stage with cap and gown to receive the diploma for which he worked so hard.
My younger son is a junior and had an internship with a local business. His employer sent him home because so many orders were canceled and that means, for now, at least, he’s not needed. He’ll pack up his little car with all he owns and head home as well.
You know, there are people struggling with a WHOLE LOT more than we are at the moment, but I want to take a minute to validate the little losses we will all face as our country fights a battle with an unseen enemy.
Little losses that feel big when you’re going through them.
Think of all the young people graduating from high school who won’t have a senior play. No prom. What about the one who finally made the basketball team after multiple tries only to have the entire season canceled. Or volleyball. Or baseball. Or hockey. Piano or ballet recitals. Birthday parties. Or any number of other events that were special to someone, or a lot of some ones.
These are the losses we tend to overlook or not take seriously because, after all, there are a lot of other more important things people are losing. And I won’t argue with that. My family is in that very same boat, the one that feels like it’s sinking. And how can we compare loss of a job or sport to loss of a person? We can’t, there’s no comparison, and I know that from personal experience. But, just because the little losses don’t compare to the big ones doesn’t mean they don’t hurt. I mean, through the eyes of an eighteen year old the list of priorities looks a lot different than the list of a thirty, forty, or fifty year old.
Just because you don’t understand or feel those little losses doesn’t mean they aren’t important.
The Lord knows.
He meets us in all of the little losses as well as the big ones.
Take a minute today and listen to a person younger than you. Ask questions and give opportunity to share what is really in their heart. Be careful not to make them feel trivial for having real feelings about things that seem big right now but may not seem so big later in life.
This is a great time to encourage and validate everyone you see. Whether that’s in the grocery store wearing a mask or walking your dog underneath a beautiful sky.
Smile at people.
Listen to them and, most of all, show kindness.
And don’t forget to look up and make shapes out of the clouds, that’s a gift straight from heaven above.