Turning Pain into Power

Two weeks ago, life seemed pretty normal. We had heard about the corona virus and its devastating effects but I guess I thought we were invincible.

I don’t watch the news. Any kind of violence or pain to humanity cuts me deeply. So I was a bit sheltered from how severe the situation was.

Then last Thursday, the province I live in announced schools would be shutting down for the 2 weeks following March break. This announcement turned my corner of the world upside down.

The fact this virus could affect us the same way it had in countries around the world became our reality.

Very quickly, things seemed to spiral out of control.

Grocery stores started being cleared out, people lining up to the back of store buying up as much as they possibly could.

More and more confirmed cases of the virus were reported.

Doctors and public health started pleading for us to self-isolate.

Businesses were forced to close because of the risk to the public.

Thousands and thousands of jobs were lost within a matter of days.

I frantically prepared my family to self-isolate for the foreseeable future.

And then I turned on the news. And I watched the never-ending loop of bad news.

My heart started to hurt as I heard of the suffering of other people.

To hear that some have lost their lives.

To know that some people can’t afford to eat because they have lost their jobs.

Thousands of jobs lost.

Businesses having no other choice but to close down, unsure they would stay afloat when this was all said and done.

All of this hurts on such a deep level.

I find myself vacillating between feeling sadness, anger, and frustration, to feelings of peace and acceptance and back again.

Part of me wants to say to look for the opportunity in all of this. To see that there are great lessons in all of this – there always are.

In life we don’t see all of the moving parts. We don’t know what this current crisis will do for our future. Or how we will look back at this crisis in a few years from now.

But the other part of me wants to scream and be angry at people who are not heeding the advice to isolate and instead are choosing to live life as “normal as possible.”

Life is not normal. It can not be.

This is a global pandemic.

What I do know is that we are ALL affected in some way, shape, or form.

The things that we used to take for granted such as going to the movies, meeting with friends for coffee, or even running to the store to grab one forgotten item are not possible. And they won’t be until this passes.

And it will pass.

In the meantime, what I do know for sure, is that we are all in this together. The great majority of us will be affected emotionally, physically, mentally, spiritually, and financially.

We can no longer pretend that this isn’t happening. It just is.

It’s uncertain. We don’t have any idea what will happen in the coming days, weeks, months, or years.

But if we can keep our eyes on the bigger picture, we don’t have to be driven by the fear.

Yes, the foreseeable future will have challenges.

But this too shall pass.

In the meantime, let’s stick together – not physically though. 😉

Self-isolate. It isn’t about you and the fact that you are healthy. It is about doing what is right for those who aren’t as lucky.

Take care of your health. Eat lots of fruits and veggies. Drink a lot of water. Exercise. Manage your stress. Sleep. Wash your hands.

Practice gratitude.

Spend time with your family that you otherwise may not have.

Take this time in isolation to reflect. Who are you at your core? Who will you be coming out of this?

Reach out for support and be a support to your loved ones.

Stay connected. Thankfully we have tech to help us to reach out to our loved ones. Have video calls with your family and friends. Send a text to your parents.

Help when you can, whether it is dropping groceries at your neighbor’s doorstep or taking a minute to thank the front line workers (doctors, nurses, pharmacists, grocery store clerks.)

Love. Be kind.

As painful as this is, we can stay in the fear and be driven by it. Or we can turn that pain into power and do as much good in the world as we can…from behind closed doors.

Take care!! XO