Spring has sprung a leak! My observations of COVID-19.
It’s spring of that we can be sure. The flowers are in full bloom. Pollen is covering every surface available and flying up every nose it can get into. My allergies are at an all-time high. Sneezing, coughing, and, watery, itchy eyes Lord help me!
Spring is supposed to be all about all of this and more. We should be enjoying the birds singing love songs in the mornings, bees pollinating the world and longer hours of daylight. Instead, this and more have taken a back seat to this pandemic. COVID-19, there, I said it. The word of the year. The virus that has upended the world as we knew it.
I’d taken a backseat to this whole pandemic and not posted a word about my thoughts and feelings but after yesterday, I felt like something had to give. There are so many opinions about how we are to go about handling this thing that it makes one’s head spin. It’s hard to believe what is streaming at the bottom or side of your screen as you surf the Internet or read your favorite magazine.
I’ve got information overload. Right now, in Virginia, we have 300+ cases with approximately 9 deaths. We are a city of over one million people. This should not be causing the drastic response that it has. I mean, the flu does a lot worse than that in any given season. But, in light of what has been happening in other states and across the world in Italy, the UK, and China, we have decided to proceed on the side of extreme caution.
As of yesterday, all non-essential businesses have to close for the next 30 days. 30 days of no haircuts, movies, shopping for things other than the essentials found in the grocery store. Group gatherings are limited to 10 people or less unless they are members of your family.
Restaurants are closed or offering drive-through/carry out service only. Grocery stores are on limited hours of business and instructed to follow stringent cleaning protocols to ensure the safety of the shoppers and employees. Soda machines are out of commission and coffee is dispensed by employees who are suited up with gloves and masks in most convenience stores.
Everyone in classes in Virginia is out for the remainder of the school year. Colleges are trying to navigate online classes for the typical brick and mortar ones. As for the elementary, middle and high school students, this equates to 5 months of no school. I have a senior who will not graduate in the traditional fashion of pomp and circumstance. There will be no senior prom, senior skip day, picnic or various other activities that seniors get to partake in their last year of high school.
I also have a junior and freshman who are hanging in limbo as the education system catches up with the directive of the governor to close the schools. They need to figure out what is the most feasible course of action with the students.
We are living in an unprecedented time to be sure. Not since the early 1900s have we been so impacted by such a global issue as this. The magnitude is startling. What makes it so bad is the fact that we have access to so much information. It is fluidly changing from one hour to the next in “real” time.
So how do I feel personally about all of this? I’m not afraid. I am not fearful or devastated by all the statistical information we’re being fed. My faith has me grounded. Grounded in the fact that God is in control. There is nothing I can do to change the situation.
Sure, I can adhere to even more stringent handwashing techniques. I can practice social distancing and stay quarantined unless absolutely necessary, but even all of that has its limits. If it is my time to die, I believe that nothing I do can prevent this from happening. Everyone’s life has been preordained before even getting here and no amount of handwashing, mask-wearing or quarantining is going to change it.
This whole thing has strengthened my faith. I thought it was rock solid before but now I’m sure that I stand on a solid foundation. He has my attention. I am trusting and believing in Him. This too shall pass.
Sure, I will miss our normal activities in Spring. Picnics in the park, bicycle rides on the beach, and Spring break vacation to name a few. Easter will be a lot different from years past – no parades, nice outfits, hats, and Easter egg hunts for sure. But, the joy we have in our hearts about the resurrection of the risen Christ will not wane.
I have complete confidence in my God. He is in control and that brings me greater peace than anything else. So Spring, I say ado to you and the myriad of activities that usually accompany you. I will enjoy this sequestered time reading, writing and enjoying my family to the best of my ability. Checking on friends, family and neighbors alike I will remain alert and devoted to being the best I can be. Thanks, COVID-19 for bringing to view what is most important…