I stopped writing “Pandemic Ponderings” earlier this year; not because I assumed the pandemic was over, but because it seemed like people didn’t want to be in that head space anymore as the weather warmed up and vaccines ramped up. Now, the speculation of a surge within a surge, along with the onset of Omicron, is having a dampening effect on the collective mood this winter.
But the pandemic has remained constant for me and people like me – those who are vulnerable due to health conditions or age. In fact, 600,000 of the nearly 800,000 people who have died were over the age of 65.
As my final offering for 2021, I thought I’d share how I’ve gotten through the last 20 months. For just a little bit longer, it may be prudent to return to the basics that may or may not have gotten us through those long ago early days.
Fess Up About Your Frustration
It’s okay to feel frustrated, but get clear with yourself (and maybe with others) about why you’ve got that not so lovin’ feeling. Are you truly distraught that people around the world who are not vaccinated yet are at risk, or is it that you were hoping to have your passport stamped this Christmas and you feel like this grinch of a virus is stealing Christmas for the second year in a row?
Plant Yourself in the Present
Once you have perspective, the best thing you can do is get grounded in this very moment. While we haven’t returned to the days of literally watching bread rise in the oven, we also may not be in a position where we can confidently schedule every IRL activity for 2022.
Get Back to Gratitude
If we’re willing to look, there’s a lot to enjoy in the present. This is the final secret strategy, get back to that attitude of gratitude. Remember when curbside pick up was revolutionary and Zoom was a boon that connected us to other humans? Remember how we collectively and individually swore we’d never take the little things and important people in our life for granted again? Tis the season to get back to that attitude of gratitude.
There’s much to look forward to and the future is bright. It’s that belief, hope and optimism that will get us over the finish line and past these pandemic times.
Hang in there and have a happy holiday season!