I have not posted in a long time. You see, life happens. And it happened.
Finishing my thesis. Growing through personal issues. Watching my mom change and age and become so devastatingly dependent as late onset memory loss takes hold. Struggling to maintain a sense of balance when I lose a sister and her husband within days to cancer. Losing my principal who attended high school with me, just two months later, again to cancer. And so on and such.
To say the least, it has been ROUGH.
And so this year, 2020, I looked forward to a breather. Really. 2018-2019 kicked my butt and I just wanted to catch my breath. But it seems it is not to be so, at least for these early months as Covid 19 ravages the world. The word we keep hearing is “Unprecedented”. Yes, we see parallels in history in terms of the disease but the magnitude of the devastation and the unifying element of globalized suffering and loss experienced by all, has never been seen before.
So though I may want to think I’m unique, in regards to this pandemic and its far reaching effects, I can’t. We’re all experiencing the same loss,uncertainty, imbalance, an underlying panic and a need for normality, all at the same time. There is no one to touch or give a hug, provide comfort in anyway or to say, “It will be alright’. We’re all in need of those comforting actions and words.
So how do we win? How do we make choices when it seems that they have been made for us? How does one choose a mindset and execute a set of actions that allows you to beat this thing, given that you’re still alive?
You have to choose to win
This is a faith fight. It means that choosing to believe in ourselves and our God-given gifts; believing that we have more than enough on the inside to make it through. It means that we have to move now and not later because time is not on our side. We can no longer put off destiny, saying that we will have time tomorrow, because none of us know what what tomorrow will bring. Scripture reminds us in Hebrews 11: 1 “Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see’ highlighting the immediacy of action required . I saw a post some time ago that read, “Believe in what you pray for”. We have to display our faith by doing something, especially those things that scare us, that we have been putting off for a long time. We all know better than anyone else, what we hope for and we win when we choose to move despite the fear we feel. It also means being present and deliberately navigating this new paradigm in a way that supports us, our families and our communities in the best way possible.
Grieve the loss but allow it to teach you appreciation
There is a need to acknowledge the grief and confusion so many of us feel. While we do this, it is important that we do not get stuck there. We have often heard the phrase “Tomorrow is not promised to anyone” and scripture teaches us according to Psalm 90:12-17 ‘..teach us to number our days, that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom”. Certainly, we cannot carry on as we did BC (before Corona). We have been forced to acknowledge that time is not on our side and we do not have as much control as we thought we did. We took many activities for granted, believing that we’d have time to do all we wanted. Now we are forced to re-evaluate what is most important to us. Hopefully, after Corona (AC) we will adjust our attitudes especially in regards to our faith, family and finances.
Learn to encourage yourself
We already know we’re all going through it, so there’s a limit in how much people have to give, emotionally/psychologically, physically and financially. Even with technology, many feel so isolated and lost, and are struggling internally even as we do the lastest Tik-Tok dance and scroll through social media. Our physical and emotional isolation becomes so pronounced that we can hardly breathe. So what can we do in the meantime? We become our own cheerleaders in those moments when there’s no one else to cheer us on. We dig deep down for that inner strength that we all have access to and we speak over ourselves. Proverbs 18:20-21 reminds us “From the fruit of his mouth a man’s belly is filled; with the harvest from his lips he is satisfied. 21 Life and death are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruit. “ As cheesy as it may sound, speaking positive words and thinking positive thoughts, even when everything around you tells you differently, helps. The key element in this is intrinsic motivation.
If there is anything that these last months have demonstrated, it is that humans are truly resilient, creative beings. Everyday that health and other essential workers press on, everytime we smile, choose to find or display goodness and mercy in the moment, demonstrates a determination to win. We have looked at the cards we have been dealt and said, “Nope, we are not giving up!” We have chosen victory over these circumstances for ourselves, our families and extended communities. We have determined that we shall overcome.