It’s a time of huge uncertainty. A time of worry, anxiety, stress, embarking on the unknown. And yet by the same token it’s a time of absolute wonder.
I am not for one moment saying there is anything good about the global crisis that is Covid-19. I, like everyone else, want nothing more than to shut my eyes and for it all to go away. But I also recognize that isn’t going to happen overnight, and the only alternative we have if we wish get through this time, is to try and find some small positives that we can take forward once this pandemic scales down.
I’ve been thinking a lot this past week about what I am missing the most about “normal” life. I chose to live overseas so for me missing my family is a part of everyday life, but what I miss now is the option to go and see them. My parents were supposed to be on the island visiting me now and spending time with their grandson who is not quite 6 months old and who barely knows them. I miss that time that we never got the chance to have, BUT I am so grateful that I still have my parents and I can pick up the phone and call them. In fact, I’ve spoken to them more in this past week than I would in an average week and I’ve even managed to introduce them to new technology meaning that we have had whole family Zoom calls over the weekend. In the (almost) 9 years I have lived away, we have never ever done something like that as a family.
I also miss the most bizarre daily comforts: namely my office chair which I never realized was so comfortable but compared to the chair I am now sitting at in my new office (my bedroom) it’s like sitting on a cloud. I vow to never take it for granted again!
I miss being able to hug my friends, I miss popping to the shop to get a bar of chocolate when I am craving something sweet, I miss scrolling through my social media and reading random facts about people’s lives rather than seeing harrowing images of hospitals all around the world.
But in this past week I have realized that I am already looking at the world with new eyes. I am recognizing that popping to the shop to get that bar of chocolate is a luxury not a given, that hugging my friends is a privilege when what is more important is that they are healthy and well.
I only returned to work following my maternity leave a month ago. At that time it felt like the end of the world to be away from my baby. Now I would happily work full-time 5 days a week to live in a Coronavirus free world. What a crazy thing perspective is.
And the biggest wonder of all – we are all in this together. This awful terrifying beast of a virus is tearing our world apart, but we have the knowledge and control to try and stop the pieces from falling quite so quickly. Yes, it’s hard to stay at home, yes it’s hard to feel so removed from everything you once knew. But it will be so much harder to live in a world where you have lost friends and family to this virus knowing there was something more you could have done.
Stay positive, stay safe, and stay home.