Slowly, things are starting to open up and the go ahead to venture out has been given, but I meet this new ruling with trepidation and unease.
Are we to believe that the virus has simply disappeared? Do I really want things to go back to how they were before?
Not being a germaphobic, but working in pharmacy has always had me near the front-lines of germs, it’s just something you try not to think about. Every year I dread the flu season, amping up my body with Vitamin C and hoping that I have no internal battle going on that might weaken my immune system and thus create a door for that nasty beast of germs. When cases of strep and pink eye start coming in, I trust my body’s ability to fight, knowing no amount of hand washing will stop the minuscule particles that I have just breathed in. Now, I have the caronavirus to consider, the silent sleeper that one can carry about and never even know it, creating a threat not just to me but to those I love as well.
Thus, I will admit, I like this mask wearing trend, and hope it is something that Walmart allows me to do even when corporate decides it is no longer mandatory. I like knowing I am doing my part in not spreading illness, but I also like the fact, that maybe I am protected in some way as well. Plus, not having to worry about spinach stuck in my teeth or having to put on full makeup is a really nice bonus to mask wearing as well.
Aside from the virus floating about, I find myself unsettled by the reopening of things for other reasons. News has come that perhaps mid-June my other place of work will be opening, of course with strict guidelines. For three months I have worked from home and self-isolated, and I have to confess I like it. I like not having to set alarms, instead listening to my body’s natural clock instead of being forced to comply with man’s idea of time. I like that I can accomplish things for work, as well as for myself and my family all in the same day and without feeling exhausted and stretched thin. I like having time. And I know that once I am forced to go to a work place, all of these things will vanish and I will once again become the hamster on the wheel.
I enjoyed the world being shut down. We were expected to be with family, to tend to our yards, help the elderly, and be considerate of others. Things we should have been doing all along. Sadly, I have no doubt that as soon as the “all clear” is given, all of these good things will go away, and life will return to its usual break-neck pace of complete self-absorption.
People say they can’t wait for things to return to normal, but I truly hope it doesn’t return. Normal wasn’t good. It wasn’t healthy for our minds, bodies,or spirits. It wasn’t good for our world.
My hope is that when things do start moving again, that maybe we hold on to family time, game nights, eating meals together, and just sitting on the back porch appreciating nature. I hope we continue to offer assistance to our elderly, and take time to call our aging parents. I hope mindless shopping doesn’t take the place of board games, and that puzzles, craft supplies, and books continue to be the source of entertainment instead of aimlessly running down the road for boredom relief.
Basically, I hope we take with us the treasure of time and togetherness.
We get a fresh start at a new world. What do you want it to look like?
In closing, I want you to think about that question. Make a list of what matters to you, be honest with yourself, and then tape that list somewhere where you can view it now and then. Now make it happen. If money is your priority, go for it, if it’s family, make time for them. Don’t let society dictate who you should be and what your priorities should be because only you can live your life.