Updated: Mar 25, 2020
The world is weird right now. I don't know another way to describe it. As I navigate from one moment to the next, I toggle between observer and the observed. I'm in it while also looking into it, watching, feeling, experiencing. I have zero frame of reference. I don't imagine any of us do. This is new for me. For you. For so many.
I have no idea what tomorrow holds, though I remain optimistic.
Through this, I am mostly grounded and at times, tears well up in my eyes in unexpected moments. The other day it happened while gazing upon a package of cookies at the store, remembering years ago when they were my favourite special treat and I wouldn't hesitate to share them, even with a stranger. A single tear fell as I stood in that aisle in London Drugs, staring wide-eyed at the plastic packaging. And it felt good, it felt right to let that teardrop fall in real time.
There's something so raw and real about this that make social norms seem unnecessary.
I practice leaning into acceptance of the current state of affairs - a little more some days and admittedly, a little less on others. I can neither understand nor change this. This realization shifts me into a mindset of surrender. I now get why I've remained calm through much of this. I remember learning about 'anicca,' the Law of Impermanence, and how the ever-changing nature of 'life, the universe, and everything' (thank you Douglas Adams) is what we CAN count on.
Regardless of the narrative you are following, and wow, this is SO hard, it's not permanent. Nothing is. I've heard many versions of what we are experiencing: "this is man-made," "it's a conspiracy...," "birthing the world anew," "nature is talking to us," and so many more stories. All of these stories are humans trying to make sense of what our brains are trying to understand. I know I would like assurance that the future is a safe place...
The truth is, we don't know the future. It's always been somewhat uncertain; right now it is very uncertain. That sure is uncomfortable.
And: do I need to know what the future holds?
There is a sweetness, perhaps intertwined with a hint of wistfulness, to be discovered in not knowing how this story ends. It's not sweet that people are suffering, dying, scared. That is awful and tragic.
What is sweet is the inevitability of new experiences we are bound to encounter, just over the horizon. For me it's incredible that the story we are collectively living is unfolding in real time. Call me an optimist if you want to; I do think we will get through this.
If you are still reading, thank you. I am a comfort seeker and I will always find a way to make peace with any situation I experience. Here's something to consider: most of the world is in a sort of harmony at the moment. The world is being asked to focus on protecting well-being, of self and of others. We are both individually and collectively taking actions in consideration of our impact on others, which is incredible! Regardless of whether this is mandated or freely chosen, it is an evolution of the collective mindset.
Take a peek around you. What do you notice?
What are you thinking about when you put space between yourself and another while out for a stroll? It's not just about you - so many are considering the importance of protecting others, protecting the more vulnerable members of humanity.
Deep breath. I've been taking lots of those lately. What I'm learning is I don't need to seek the silver lining, though it's tempting. I simply need to make space for it to emerge. With every challenge there is a gift. From every dark time, light emerges.
World leaders for once are aligned in their message.
Never in my lifetime have I witnessed this. Have you?
I'm so sad about the tragedy this has all caused. I'm sending love to those families, doctors, nurses, people working at grocery stores and supporting us behind the scenes who have suffered. I'm sorry that people have lost their loved ones and I'm sorry that people have lost their lives.
Through this tragedy, crisis, or whatever name you give our current global situation, beyond the hurt and fear, I find gratitude. I thank this situation for reminding me how important it is to care for ourselves and for others.
I read somewhere that 'how we do one thing is how we do everything.' May loving kindness and compassion become your everything.
I love you.