(Let me preface this post by saying that I am totally aware of the real danger of this virus and 110% support and am participating in the actions taken by officials in the past week to #flattenthecurve — I am grateful that we have elected leaders who are doing the best they can to navigate this very real and time-sensitive crisis.)
We live in a time where the world as we know it has completely been blown to pieces. COVID-19, or the coronavirus, has overtaken our news cycles, engulfed every social media scroll, and overwhelmed every political and social system that we have in place.
I watched the horror of the current reality of COVID-19 set into the lives of the people I care most about this week. I listened to the choked back tears of my senior brother as he realized that the end of his high school career came much closer than he had anticipated. I’ve seen my teacher friends’ heart-breaking Facebook posts as they lament about the fates of the children they love and care for so much. I’ve watched the doctors and nurses of my town frantically search for options for their older children because public school doesn’t look the same anymore. My elderly neighbors are cautiously peeking out of their windows and isolating themselves due to the reality of a virus that can kill them. People are cowering behind their computer screens totally immobilized by the fear of the unknown. And frankly, I’ve had enough of it.
Dear people, we’ve been given a great opportunity to be human again. We have to wake up and start being beacons of light in the darkness. So start looking out for others by checking on those elderly neighbors that are struggling. Reach out to those seniors who are nursing broken hearts and dreams. Help those kiddos whose educational and social normalcy was ripped out from under them. Start spreading kindness one act at a time (and for the love of all that is holy, please stop hoarding toilet paper).
Stop the constant cycle of fear and panic—even amidst the uncertainty of the times that we live in (you actually can educate the public without frightening all of humanity). We must combat that overwhelming fear with love. And generosity. And kindness. We need to be hope-lenders. We need to leave anxiousness at the door of every room we enter and radiate peace regardless of what is thrown at us. We must choose joyfulness in every circumstance. We have to start believing with faith that there are still little miracles taking place every day.
Perhaps our greatest legacy out of all of this will be how we treat each other in the coming weeks and months. I pray that it is a positive legacy. A world-changing legacy. I hope that our children and grandchildren will one day tell the tale of how the world learned kindness in the midst of a global pandemic. I dream of a world that is bursting with a hope that sings out in unison of how a new day will dawn again and the long night will eventually end.
The choice has been given to you: be a fear-spreader or hope-lender. I hope you go change the world, one small act of kindness at a time. <3
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