What COVID-19 Taught Me

It’s been quite a roller-coaster ride for the past three months, hasn’t it? In spite of many forewarnings, no one had a plan in place in the event of a pandemic. No one! No government, no hospital, no individual. Not even the WHO! So what’s going on here? Maybe this was a lesson in taking personal responsibility for our part in the evolution of the human species. After all, isn’t that our raison d’être, our purpose? Are we not here to be in service to all, for the good of all? Might COVID-19 be a harsh reminder of what our true purpose is?

We all got too comfortable. Sure, we knew something had to give, eventually, but no one wanted to face the discomfort involved in making things right again for all. For all humankind, for Earth, for Mother Nature and all its creatures. Our idea of “helping” was tossing a few coins to this or that charity or organization so we could feel good about ourselves and sleep nights. Clearly, that was not enough. More was at stake here. We underestimated the damage we had done and apparently were willing to continue to do.

Enter COVID-19. And boy, did it get our attention. We were forced to face uncertainty, and for some, death. Egos are not comfortable with uncertainty. They strive to achieve solid ground at all cost. Everything was out of our control. An invisible virus had taken over all we held so dear and we were forced to face the ugly truths of the world, society and injustice we had created. This was “time out” on a global scale.

Astrologers had been warning that something big was coming for over a year, but no one paid any heed. They didn’t necessarily know exactly “what” was coming. They just knew planets were lining up in such a way that was foreboding and a massive change was on the horizon. And I, for one, sure hope so. We need big changes to take effect. Otherwise, we will have gone through this for nothing. I pray we can make all the deaths, confusion, sadness, sacrifices mean something for the greater good of all.

NOW WHAT?

COVID-19 has brought us to our knees. It has also brought out the best in some of us. I have seen kindness, courage, generosity, creativity and a sense of community beyond anything I have witnessed in decades. I am happy to see families spend precious time together. I believe some of their happiest memories will come from this unexpected experience. And those who weren’t able to spend time with loved ones now know how valuable family and friends really are.

On an individual basis, this unplanned “staycation” forced me to look within and reflect on what I did to contribute to the world I had a part in creating. What New World do I want to see and what might that look like? Who was I and who do I want to become? What are my values and do I need to change those in any way in order to contribute to the New World I envision? They were tough questions and the answers were not always pleasant.

Like many, I had seen injustices, yet remained silent. Sure, I felt empathy for the victims but all I did was shake my head and judge the perpetrators, the justice system, the politicians. I did nothing to change things. What could I possibly do? What did I have to offer? That was someone else’s job. I was too comfortable to get involved or stand up for someone else. Sadly, by taking this stance, I was not even standing up for myself and my values. I was only giving them lip service.

TIME FOR CHANGE

I am encouraged by the current unrest, the peaceful protests and the outrage I see happening around the world. People have awakened from a deep sleep and do not like what they see. I am encouraged to see the younger generation is involved. I believe it’s time for “boomers” to stand back and hand the reins over to them. As elders, we can be mentors to those who ask for advice and focus our attention, energy and expertise on social and community issues that need change, such as elder care, equality for all, child care services, homelessness and more. We can become life and empowerment coaches.

We were gifted this beautiful world and humankind is responsible for it and all of its inhabitants. (V&V Hospitality & Media Services)

I am sure we have many more lessons to learn from this global experience. I pray we learn them on this first go-around, otherwise, we will only have to repeat the process until we get it. And that would be a pity. So many have given up their precious lives so the rest of us could wake up, face the music and get on with the meaningful business of creating a New World that is fair, just and respectful to all.

Posted by Donna S. Vieira

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