COVID-19 took me by surprise, as it did many millions of people. I had been feeling uneasy for some weeks, but assumed it was about keeping business flowing. Mine is a quiet, hermit-like life, so I was shocked to recognize that something was drastically wrong, people were panicked, store shelves were emptying… even after I heard about the corona virus, I thought folks might be over-reacting….I couldn’t believe we were so threatened. None of us has ever experienced such a pandemic as is circling the globe and infiltrating almost every town in the northern hemisphere….
Why? Why Now? What must we learn from this pandemic? These are the questions at the top of my list. This is a new experience, never have I seen such a phenomenon as social distancing and self isolation. I never thought I would see a day when so many businesses would be deemed “non-essential” and forced to close their doors; people must work from their homes, if they are lucky enough to be able to hold onto their jobs. This could be the beginning of an entirely new way of managing work for many companies who discover they can get on with business without the overhead of a big office…. the work from home movement could be the beginning of a whole new operating style, especially for white collar workers,.
Here are some random thoughts on what this COVID-19 pandemic might mean:
- One significant note about this pandemic is to notice how technology is supporting us. If this crisis happened even a few years ago, we would not be able to connect online as we are now. Educators can still teach, classes can continue, relationships can be maintained, people in isolation can still communicate and interact with the world, even without making contact with anyone. This tells us that we are more connected than we think…. we are grateful that the world wide web makes it possible to move past the boundaries imposed by the stay at home protocol.
- We are encouraged to meditate as a practice to relieve the stress and fear…. we are reminded that we are spiritual as well as physical beings.
- We learn also that disease is no respecter of borders…. we are indeed one and need to act as a Oneness if we are to survive this global disaster.
- The corona virus primarily attacks the respiratory system, filling lungs with infection – at a time when the planet’s lungs – the Amazon rain forests – are under attack by profiteers.
- Social Distancing is an equalizer, applies to everyone, gets folks centered on home and self, families coming together for fun and learning, to pass the time… parents must take on the role of teacher – an important message for the parents of this entitled generation…. we are being pushed back to value family and family values.
- Hoarding is a consequence of the focus on self that the pandemic triggers….represents the deep fear we hold around our ability to survive…. our survival instincts on steroids….
- Price gouging – some governments have promised severe penalties for anyone caught hoarding and then selling items like masks and sanitizer at highly inflated prices. Price gouging is both a reflection of selfish greed and our deep fear that there won’t be enough… We are reminded to be thoughtful of others, especially now.
- Self-isolation is making us all more creative…. the entertainment industry has found many creative ways of bringing us information, news and good programming. And individuals are finding creative ways of passing the time at home, from creating funny videos to sharing stories of their experiences.
- Washing our hands is a reminder to wash your hands also of the past, let it go…
COVID-19 is a test of our ability to care for others as much as we care for ourselves…. love thy neighbor now means staying at least 1-2 meters away….. and being responsible to our community by doing our best to follow the public health demands: Wash your hands often, don’t touch your face, keep your distance (1-2 meters), and stay at home as much as possible. And don’t buy into the fear!