Have you noticed a change in people around you within the past few weeks? The folks in our neighborhood certainly have changed. And it’s been a good thing.
We live near a large city, where people adopt a live-and-let-live mentality. Most don’t know their neighbors. But since we’ve been told to stay at home, those around us are getting to know one another. We took our dog on a walk and stopped to talk to a couple standing in front of their house. They were friendly, just like people used to be. (And yes, we stayed six feet away from them.) That probably wouldn't have happened four weeks ago.
More people are out taking walks, in fact. Their facial expressions have changed from, “I’ve gotta hurry and get home so I can do the next thing,” to “Wow! I’m enjoying this leisurely walk. Isn’t it a nice day!” They smile and wave at one another.
Families now are doing things together. They dig puzzles out of the closet, sit down and look at one another. Real conversation is taking place. Children build Lego villages and create crafts. Cars remain in the drive while their owners re-connect with families.
On the humorous side, a friend who works at a Mom and Pop grocery store saw an elderly man come in with a homemade face mask made from a coffee filter held in place with four Band-aids. We're all learning to be creative in this new challenge life has thrown at us.
Yes, it’s been a good thing to screech to a halt (or at least screech to a drastic slow-down) in lifestyle.
During this time we can say one of two things: “Can we do this” or “We can do this.”
It’s helpful to recall that our ancestors toughed worse times and survived. When my grandmother died in the flu epidemic one hundred years ago, she left behind a three-year-old child, my dad. Yet he grew into a compassionate adult after going through a tough experience. The pain he suffered developed in him a heart for those less fortunate. The process was painful, the results beautiful.
So, what's the take-away from this new world-wide crisis? Will it make us bitter or better?
Life is a great teacher if we’re willing students. I’m planning to pass the course; how about you?
Any thoughts on the world-wide crisis and how it affects us? Feel free to comment below.