#COVID19 A strictly human perspective....
I am, at my core, an optimist. Part of that comes from living a faith-based life, but perhaps an even larger part comes from the fact that I have to be. I find negativity to be far too heavy a load to carry around with me all day. The burden makes me feel tired, and that means I cannot be there for others who depend upon me daily.
Times are difficult now. Covid-19, or the coronavirus, has taken over our lives. It is an invisible enemy whose power far exceeds anything I’ve endured in my lifetime, and yet I remain optimistic. Even though we are being asked to live our lives in ways and manners that feel foreign and uncomfortable, we are also being granted hidden opportunities.
With exception to the medical industry, governments and certain manufacturers, most of us are being told to take a necessary time out, to shelter in place while those on the front lines wage this war on our behalf. So what do we do with all this time? For me, the journey begins in my mind by asking myself the simple question, “Why?” Why is this happening?
I don’t believe in modern day plagues hurled upon a supposedly evil sector of society, but barrowing from an economic term, I do believe in corrections. So much of the world at large has become far too ego-based and materialistic in nature. Whether it’s spending exorbitant sums of money on homes, automobiles and entertainment, or spending more time on social media than we do with our families, our value system seems to have become skewed. Greed rules and enough is never enough. Maybe that’s why this current virus is primarily attacking more privileged nations while leaving those less developed more or less unscathed.
Peaking in Europe between 1348 and 1350, the Black Death, often referred to as “The Plague”, wiped out one-third of the continent’s population. According to Wikipedia, short and long-term effects included a series of biological, social, economic, political and religious upheavals, which had a profound effect on the course of world history. Therefore, is it outlandish to perceive this pandemic as an opportunity to re-prioritize our lives in a manner more becoming to the essence of who we are as human beings?
We have a real opportunity to become more relationship-based, kinder and gentler in our day-to-day interactions with others and less preoccupied with where we’re going and instead appreciate where we are. We can reacquaint ourselves with what it means to be a good human being while seeking leadership from those whose values line up with our own. And last of all, we can say a resounding “no” to fear, hatred, lies, divisiveness and bullying, because such behaviors never made America great.
Today, as I sit at my desk sending out emails and autographing books to get in the mail, I have the news on in the background. Regardless of the channel, talk about COVID-19 Coronavirus disease is inescapable. Even though I pride myself for being the calm in the center of a storm, it’s impossible not to feel afraid, if not for myself, then for my 86-year-old mother, my husband, my children and grandchildren.
Staying informed is key, but when I see pictures and videos of grown-ups emptying retailer’s shelves of toilet paper, I can’t help wondering what children must be thinking. With so many unexpected changes happening all around them, from cancellation of large events to potential school closings, how do they begin to process this viral outbreak? Do they panic in private relying upon images they see on social media, which is not always a good barometer, or do they go to their parents for the answers they need?
I think it incumbent upon parents to take proactive measures by talking to their children about what’s going on and then appropriately answering their questions. You don’t do them any favors by hiding your concerns, but you can use your own personal fears to educate them as to what’s being done and how they can do their part to help stop the spread of the disease.
Knowledge is power, and I always feel better in control whenever I know what’s happening and what’s being done about it. I can’t help feeling like humanity is being tested. Response by those in control is being measured daily. Our nation has the best and the brightest working on this global pandemic, but we are also being measured as human beings.
Are we pulling together as a nation, or distancing ourselves. Are we finally going to try and heal this divide, or are we going to cement it forever? Before you answer that question please remember, our children are depending on us, we mustn’t let them down.
According to the World Health Organization:
About the Author
Joy Metzer worked as a professional interior designer for more than twenty-five years, spearheading projects both nationally and abroad, while cultivating an audience for her writing through several book publications and a successful online blog under her former name, Joyce M. Stacks. Though no stranger to real life portrayals intended to enrich the lives of her readers, this is her first effort at writing a children’s chapter book loosely based upon the private life she shares with her husband. She attended both the University of Utah and Texas Christian University and currently resides in Hot Springs, Arkansas, to be near her family, as well as in Lead Hill with her husband, Bill.