It’s one thing to experience new things in life that I’ve never experienced. It’s quite another to experience new things that NO ONE in our lifetime has experienced. The last time I remember having this “unsettled” feeling was on 9/11 and it’s aftermath.
With the entire world basically going into imposed or self-imposed quarantine because of COVID-19, the unknown is rather unsettling.
I don’t understand the metrics of how our economy works well enough to be able to fathom the long term effects of all that’s transpiring, but my heart is breaking for all of those people and families who have jobs that have been shut down, and who aren’t salaried and subsist paycheck to paycheck, including those privately owned businesses, such as all my friends who own gymnastics clubs.
Hopefully we’ll be able to resume our normal lifestyle sooner rather than later and when we are I believe it’s really important to support our communities, patronize private-owned businesses (while maintaining a healthy social distance, obviously) and TIP WELL as we all get back on our feet!
Society has proven over and over again that in times of crisis the best of our humanity surges forward with unified unwavering forces of goodness and kindness. I was in three different airports last week and was overwhelmed by the levels of extreme kindness, patience and respect everyone had for each other. It wasn’t just a few people… it truly was everyone I encountered. Random acts of kindness were the norm, and reminded me that at our core we are all kindhearted, compassionate and superheroes in our own right.
A small example of a Random Act of Kindness: I was in line to get coffee at the airport and the woman behind me was a bit agitated and kept checking the time. Not knowing what the issue was, and not needing to know… I asked her if she’d like to go ahead of me, to which she profusely thanked me. Then the guy who was at the front of the line ordering turned to her and said “Give me your order, I’m happy to get it for you.”
Once we landed, another woman in front of me was struggling to get her luggage down. Even though I tried to help, my pilates-strong muscles were also falling short of the task 😉 Then a darling young man behind me—with a big smile on his face—gallantly said, “Ladies, let me help you.” He got her luggage down, then asked me where mine was and got mine down for me, then proceeded to go through every piece of luggage in the overhead bins around us and got everyone’s luggage down for them. He looked to be in his early teens, everyone applauded him and his proud mama looked at me with a big smile on her face and said “Yep that’s my boy.”
For a long time we’ve been talking about how our society has become more disconnected and isolated. Now we’re discovering just how much connection we still have. In Spain quarantined residents set alarms and walked out to their balconies to cheer on the medical workers heading to the hospital to care for their community. In Italy, homebound residents stepped outside, pulled out their instruments and cleared their throats to fill the empty streets with sweet Italian ballads.
To combat the spread of a virus we are asking people to isolate themselves and as a result we’re rediscovering just how much the human spirit thrives on connectedness and community. I don’t have any idea how the next few weeks or months are going to play out, but I do know we can’t take a single day for granted. On the last leg of my trip I was wearing one of my sweatshirts that says, “Life if Short-Don’t Wait to Dance.” The airline attendant read it, smiled, shook her head and said, “Honey, ain’t that the truth.”