We are all experiencing COVID-19 in different ways. The word “sonder” comes to mind. Sonder: The realization that everyone has a story.
Here are some of the many situations our fellows are in during this time:
- If you have young children at home and you are also trying to work, you are likely just trying to get through each day.
- If you are elderly or immune-compromised, or have loved ones in your life who are, your daily experience is inevitably a bit scary.
- If you are home alone, despite how many interactions you may get on video and phone calls and brief connections at the grocery store and during your daily walk, you are likely feeling lonely.
- If you lost your job and you don’t have enough money, you are certainly worried and in survival mode.
- If you’re a student in elementary or high school and you’re doing your classes virtually, you may feel robbed of the special experiences you were expecting at the end of a school year, particularly if you’re graduating.
- If you’re a college student who had to come back home and find yourself living with your parents again, you may be very disappointed.
- If you are an essential worker, in health care or on the front lines at a grocery store, restaurant or hardware store, you may be exhausted and worried about getting sick or getting your loved ones sick.
- If you or someone in your home is sick, either with COVID-19 or another illness, you are also in survival mode.
- If you are in an unsafe home with an abusive person, as many people are, you may be in a living hell during this time.
- If you are sheltering-in-place with a close partner or other adults or older children you enjoy being with (most of the time), this experience can have many bright sides.
When someone in category ten starts talking about how much they are getting done, and how special this time has been, it can be beyond frustrating for the other nine categories. And there are more situations, for sure.
As I was thinking about this newsletter today, questions about daily life in the time of corona came up:
- What do you miss most? (gyms, travel, seeing friends and family…)
- What have you started to do that you want to keep doing? (meditation, journaling, daily walks…)
- What have you started to do that you want to stop doing? (games on the phone, overindulging…)
- What’s the hardest thing? (the unknown, masks, sickness, politics…)
- What are the unexpected surprises? (family time, quiet time, gardening, slowing down…)
Despite the intensity of this time, life goes on for the cows and the birds and the flowers. Spring is here in all its glory in the Northern hemisphere. A calf was born in the meadow across from my house last week. We named her “Corona.”
Baby calf “Corona” just a few days old. There has been a lot of talk that this pandemic can be a wake-up call to save the environment. The reduction of industrial activity, flights and driving have caused a dramatic drop in carbon dioxide and nitrogen dioxide, greatly improving air quality. Animals are also taking note in areas that have been shut down and are reclaiming roads and spots where people are usually present.
These are encouraging signs. It’s heartening to see how quickly nature can respond when given the change.
Today, my goal is to focus on what is at hand and how I can be of help, even in the smallest ways. As I sonder, I will also call a few people I know who are in one of the categories above besides number ten.
With warm wishes and a glimmer of light at the end of the tunnel,
CEO, ROI Communication
Chief Catalyst, Living ROI
P.S. I’d like to share a thoughtful 13-minute video from Stan Rushworth, an elder of Cherokee descent who teaches Native American Literature. The video is called, Prayer for the Earth: An Indigenous Response to These Times.