As every person in the entire world is confronting COVID-19, we are all now living with this “between space”. We are dreaming of many things quickly returning to life as we once knew it while also having to learn to live with these all-encompassing restrictions which brings excessive restrictions stress to all our lives. As difficult as all of this is, we have no choice but to confront these trying circumstances by acting on the notion that our individual efforts are critical to the treatment of the collective society. We all must do the best we can to get through this crisis. This virus does not care what ethnicity you are, if you have wealth or if your health is perfect. We are all vulnerable to contracting this. For many of us, this may a time to take a moment and ask ourselves if we want to return to life as we were living. Perhaps we are learning something about ourselves which might suggest the need or desire for us to consider mapping out an alternative future.
Our Unitarian minister spoke this past on this topic and it really hit home. The main message was we need to re-evaluate our lives and society and learn from this horror we are stuck in. If we are the lucky ones able to continue from disaster as it diminishes, we should then engage in a degree of some constructive introspection. We need to consider those areas of our lives we might want to change and what aspects of our lives we might want to hold on to.
Life will be changed from the event. Like WWII, the victory gardens became huge and the woman showed their amazing skills and strength taking over many men’s jobs. Today, many families have carried on with their gardening joys and woman have become more recognized as more than just mothers. As an old proverb suggests, within very crisis one can find opportunity. This is clear in our present circumstances. Can we take advantage of this crisis and create some positive outcomes?
So, when the symptoms of crisis subside, how will you want to be defined? Those of us living with chronic problems clearly would love to see our conditions resolved, but unfortunately, for many that will never be the reality. But there are things we can learn from this. The biggest issue is to offer our gifts to others. This may sound simplistic, but we need to remember no matter how handicapped we have become, we are here, alive and can reach out to others to help comfort, share, help, and care. I know many coping with medical complications don’t feel like they have anything to offer. But you are not a without value, you matter! And you can be there for others.
So ponder while you have this time to live through what you must give to others. How can you reach out despite your limitations? Stay strong, stay safe and may we all get past this horror soon with grace and caring for our fellow humans. We have all worked so hard to remain constructively engaged in life, so let’s make our time count!
May life be kind to you,
Ellen Lenox Smith
Author of: It Hurts Like Hell!: I Live With Pain– And Have a Good Life, Anyway, and My Life as a Service Dog!
The information in this column should not be considered as professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. It is for informational purposes only and represents the author’s opinions alone. It does not inherently express or reflect the views, opinions and/or positions of National Pain Report.