No one would have wished this pandemic on anyone anywhere in the world, but it has a become one we’re all battling. Within that battle is a sense of working together with the world, seeing other countries going through a similar experience where grief and joy are shared in a way most of us have never witnessed.
Amid experiencing the suffering, financially, emotionally and physically it can seem impossible to find anything positive about what we’re collectively going through. However, the human spirit guided by so many people reaching out and trying to help others is breath taking and hopeful. Children still play in my neighborhood, parents home working and teaching but taking time to share a laugh with weary neighbors. It will take more than COVID-19 to steal our joy. Therefore, during this religious time with Passover and Easter being celebrated around the world, I think it’s important we give thanks and celebrate the blessings within the mess of COVID-19.
As you read through the list of blessings I’ve observed, it is my hope that you can add many more to the list. Being grateful is an important aspect of enhancing emotional and physical health. Grieving the pain is necessary, but so is appreciating and using your gratefulness to encourage and support others.
The blessing of family and friends. Families and friends are the “safe place” and only security most people have. Being with family 24/7 isn’t always easy, but being able to share meals, work and life with your family has taken on a new level of gratitude. If you’ve had your priorities misaligned with not giving family enough of your time, COVID-19 has changed that.
The blessing of our health care workers, researchers and front-line responders. When you have a medical emergency, you depend on people in the medical field to help and although you’re grateful, you expect them to help. COVID-19 health care workers and first responders have put our lives before theirs every single day, risking their own health to save others.
The blessing of teachers. Within days teachers have revamped their teaching plans, and worked to restore their efforts to continue to teach our children. We were aware that teachers had a difficult job, but now since many parents are working with teachers more as a team, there is a new level of gratitude.
The blessing of service people. Food industry employees, restaurant workers, metro workers, postal services, janitors, truck drivers and the numerous other workers provide daily needs for customers. These people are true helpers and work to keep us safe, fed and cared for. COVID-19 has shone a light on many hourly workers who do ordinary jobs, helping us appreciate their extraordinary effects on our lives.
The blessing of the human spirit, reflection and hope. People are worried about their health, their finances and their loved ones. Yet, amidst their worries and fear I see incredible acts of kindness, hope and understanding. There is a component within COVID-19 that helps each of us see our fragility and utter lack of control. I am grateful for this awareness in seeing acts of kindness and genuine concern for others around me.
We will eventually get through this, and hopefully the blessings within this experience will help us be a more resilient, compassionate and community-focused people.