My home is lovely. My spouse is a good person. My health is very good. My kids, my grandkids are simply marvelous. And I’m grateful.
But darn it – life has been turned upside down.
During these crazy days, I’m trying, really, to maintain a schedule. I’m trying to do things that make me feel productive, a contributor, and yet – I haven’t hit my stride in this new world of enforced confinement.
Suddenly I know what it must feel like to be a prisoner – someone locked up with the keys tossed away. Someone with very, very few “connections” to the world as we knew it even 4 weeks ago.
At times I regret being retired. My children are checking in with work colleagues all the time. “How’s this project going? And that one? What’s the new assignment all about?”
I’ve got my list of projects. Almost 20 of them. Some, more consequential than others. They all hovered over my head in that era known as “before.” And now that the excuse of prior commitments has wiped the excuse slate clean, I’m stillllll finding it tough, really, really tough, to simply get going. I almost feel like I’m drowning – in a substance I struggle to define.
Yes, there are the people – the people I call, text, email, even Zoom with fairly regularly. But no – it’s not taking the place of “it” – from that era known as “before.” And even though we will come out at a better side when this is over, I’m grieving over the loss of “before.”
I bet, even if there were some international announcement in which all the world’s big mucky mucks got together and said, “Guess what? This was all a genuine hoax! It’s over. Resume your positions.” Even if – it’s never, ever going to be the same again. Deep down, I know that. And deep down, I bet you do, too.
A woman in labor may let out a pain-filled cry as she births the future. And when the birthing is done, she – like us – will find that life is now quite different. She may look at that baby, wondering, will this babe be a great leader, artist, healer, contributing much and loved by all who cross her path.
Similarly, I wonder about this new world we all are “birthing.” A world in which shopping malls, grocery stores, classrooms, medical visits – get swapped out like maternity clothes after delivery, for a different entity – the online “experience.” Yes, I know. Most of us have what we consider extensive online experience. Yet we have absolutely no idea of the depth and breadth of change that’s about to happen. New companies will sprout up so fast to service our newborn era, and hopefully, the change, the innovation will foster the betterment of us all.
I’m thinking this virus, this Covid-19, is Mother Nature’s doing. She’s telling us: stop wasting precious time and resources building walls. Get back to basics. Love your family. Cherish your friends. Eat, drink, sensibly. Laugh, love, learn, work, study, practice. With vigor. Embrace change. Don’t wall it out. Life’s too short for vanilla when there are rainbow flavors to celebrate. Oh – and make your bed. Every morning. Gives your day well needed structure.