What a wild week it has been. You just don’t ever know. Emotions have been high and low and everything in between, as we all do our best to find some balance, our balance.
A friend texted before a flight. She was scared. Her attitude about flying this week was different than mine was, but she didn’t need weigh in on what to do–she had already made the brave and uncomfortable decision to proceed. What she needed was reassurance, to help regain her balance.
I was talking to my son about the fear factor. That this time now has a semblance to twenty years ago– 9/11. Before that was the Cold War, and all the wars where boys his age were drafted. (Imagine that! And then imagine what we protect our young people from experiencing.) Yeah, the spring break Cabo trip being canceled is a bummer. So is missing a 21st birthday party. Or the end of an abroad program. Or your lacrosse season. They are bummers. Absolutely. But they are not tragedies. Uncomfortable and disappointing times for sure, but life can be like that. And the sooner we, and our kids, realize this, the better for all. We can grieve what isn’t AND be thankful for what is.
A favorite sermon by Gil Bowen, inspired by the resurrection was about taking some really deep breaths and waiting three days before making any big calls or proclamations, because you just never do know what can happen in three days….The unimaginable… The Easter story.
We just witnessed this from Wednesday to Friday. And God only knows where will all be on Monday. Physically, emotionally, spiritually. We just don’t know. I think it is important to engage our young people in real conversations about this, with historic perspective. Quite frankly I believe it is our duty.
A personal story, shared with permission:
My son, like most 20 year olds, vaped. He got really really sick with a virus 3 years ago that cost him 20 pounds and compromised breathing. We believe it was the kind of nasty virus one can die from and it gave us a “healthy” respect for how devastating these viruses can be. He has had a cough ever since then, persistent enough to warrant recent chest x rays.
He also recently stopped vaping. He is taking care of his body, building back its strength and vivacity, and the cough is diminishing.
We spoke of this: if not for recent difficulties and compromised health, he would probably still be vaping. If he was still vaping his lung capacity would be much more compromised than it is now. And if this were the case, no doubt, he would be at great risk for complications from the Corona virus.
I encouraged him to think about life this way sometimes. Not that I’ve got it down, by any means. But on the occasions I do look at the unfoldings of life through this “what if” lens, I land in a better place. A place of gratitude.
From experience I can share that I don’t have any idea what next week will look like. And, from experience, I can share that being open to wonder invokes hope and faith, which have a magical effect on your whole being.
Along these lines, here is an oldie (included in a blog last year) but so well worth another share. Especially with our young people. It’s life. Be open and observant of all the unknowns.