This has been a terrible, awful and seemingly never-ending pandemic. I have personally lost a few of my close friends to this virus and I was not even able to attend their funerals. I have seen my family maybe three times since March. I get very irritated when my glasses or sunglasses fog up from wearing the mask. I feel very exhausted at times and I am sure you can relate.
Yet it is all necessary – and it is not all bad.
Social distancing is a polite thing to do, as well, as the right thing to do. Masks are so ubiquitous now that it makes sense to wear them during cold and flu season – even after they find a vaccine for COVID-19. Hopefully the spikes in beach states like Florida and California will prove valuable for us in other states with low incidence rates.
|“You’ve heard of the Freshman 15? Meet the COVID 19.”
Being quarantined for all these months has not been easy. But on the plus side, I saved money on gas. I did not have to buy hairspray, shampoo or cosmetics. Speaking of plus sides, I noticed how comfortable my yoga pants were to wear. Then, overnight, I noticed how tight my yoga pants were fitting. You’ve heard of the Freshman 15? Meet the COVID 19. Okay, in reality it was not 19 pounds, but it was 7 or 8 pounds, and that was enough to get me out of bed to do a workout before sitting my then-sizeable rear-end down to work in my dining-room, now converted office space.
I also became Queen of the Fabulous Top Half of My Outfit. My shirts were clean and pressed, necklaces or earrings to complement it, and I applied make-up sparingly. All of this fabulousness was paired with my yoga pants and slippers. But I looked good for those ZOOM calls.
My Tupperware cabinet, the bane of my existence that I banished to just-keep-the-door-shut land, is now color-coded and in size order. I am tempted to frame the pictures I took. I cleaned out my linen closet and organized it. Sometimes I open the door just to admire how neat and pretty it all looks. I am getting super organized. These are things I have been wanting to do for years and I am loving it.
All that aside, the larger, global picture is much more significant. NASA recently reported that pollution in some of the epicenters of COVID-19 such as Wuhan, Italy, Spain, and the USA, has reduced up to 30%. By the end of February, Wuhan, who has high density levels of nitrogen dioxide – the main ingredient in air pollution – was virtually non-existent by mid-February.
I did notice that the flowers and gardens in my area look more vibrant – especially the hydrangeas – but I am not sure if that is a result of a long winter of our discontent, or if it is from a less polluted environment.
We’ve also built very genuine relationships. Did you miss your favorite restaurant? Or was it your people that you missed and the social connections? Life slowed down for all of us, and thus enabled us to find ways to connect with people – inside and outside our homes in meaningful and impactful ways.
We are all practicing better hygiene – and this is a change for the good. We will remember not to shake hands, to cover our mouths when we cough or sneeze, and sanitize, sanitize, sanitize.
Plus, there’s a whole new world of innovation out there. From shifting to digital classroom learning, to virtual offices and meetings. Not only have we proved as a society that we can perform as well, or better at home, we have shifted the perception of working models, to embrace working from home as mainstream. Companies are now using a “remote workforce” policy for their recruitment and retention.
Moreover, your distance from work is no longer a problem. Twitter went completely remote “forever” back in May, Facebook is planning it and many other companies are incorporating a work-from-home strategy, meaning someone in California can actually work for a NY-based company.
So in everything bad there is something good; in everything good there is something bad. The principles of Yin-yang represent how opposite forces are seen as interconnected and counterbalancing. The circle is made up of black and white swirls, each containing a spot of the other.
We know how to survive and we will persevere. We are forever bonded together in history to get through to the other side. Let’s focus on getting to the other side, which will be much brighter, and while we are physically distant, we can remain socially and spiritually connected.
Until next time, be well and be safe.