It’s coming – I have hope. It may be a year from now or more, but one day it will be safe to hug again. When it’s safe to hug again, we can meet our loved ones in person, without that magic of screen technology and watch their lips as they upturn in joyful smiles. When it’s safe to hug again, our heroes can rest a little easier knowing that they helped save the world. When it’s safe to hug again, we can fly again. When it’s safe to hug again, we can put those travel dreams to work, book the ticket, and get our adventure on. One day it will be safe to hug again. Can you tell I miss hugs?
‘You must trust and believe in people, or life becomes impossible’ – Anton Chekhov
As previously mentioned, in the past few weeks, the husband and I sat down to watch all of the Star Wars movies. I had only ever seen the original three and this past weekend, we completed the last one. When it finished, he exclaimed, ‘that was a whole lot of movie’ and he was right. I’ve been processing it since Sunday. The whole good versus evil, light over darkness, meditation, mantras, kindness, teachings, choices, friendship, the for the good of all attitude, and that in every situation, we each have a choice to make as to how we approach the world at large. Seriously, it all keeps showing up and reminding me of how each one of us continues to be able to choose how we show up in the world, how we respond to each other, how we handle situations, how we respect and care for each other, and how we behave when everyone and no one is watching.
After Hurricane Sandy, Long Beach was able to rebuild because of people. People from all walks of life, all sorts of political and religious beliefs, law enforcement and civilian, employees and volunteers, locals and visitors, organizations and private citizens alike showed up. People banded together for the good of the community, to help each other, and to treat others as they’d like to be treated. Just as in the movie, when the resistance needed it most, it was people who showed up to add their strength, their desire to bring light to darkness, and to help the greater good turn the tide. I want to believe that it’s people who can do it again. We, the people, have the ability to show up, put the good of each other ahead of our own needs, offer a hand, lift up, care, help, and support each other. We all want to be able to hug each other again – it’s our actions and behaviors that will make those hugs for everyone come sooner than later.
‘In spite of everything, I believe that people are really good at heart’ – Anne Frank
My best friend in Hong Kong has re-entered the world. She’s masked and armed with precautions while she’s back at her studio and her kids will soon head back to finish their year at brick and mortar schools. My friends in Australia are in the phases of re-entry and will again be headed back to those traditional buildings for kids to learn in that in person setting for, potentially, the duration of the year. My friends and family in New York are still under that pause hoping that the upcoming summer season will be one where safety, health, and fun can take place amidst the continuing closures of one sleep away camp after the next. And we’re here, in San Diego hanging home as the county and state begin to relax those orders. Each of us will handle that re-entry differently. Whether we’re chomping at the bit or hesitant to head into that ‘new normal’ of society amidst a pandemic – we really are all in this together. Once again, it’s the people who have the ability to turn the tide.
The whole idea of re-entry still makes me twitch. I’ve had a few steps forward in getting some cleaning products, procuring masks, and getting used to the idea of the outside world with people again; yet, as in life, there are often some steps back where anxiety sets in and the idea of it all seems really big. We’ve done re-entry before, but only in the realm of returning from travel abroad and NOT in the nature of a pandemic. In the travel sense, it’s the reverse culture shock. It’s the return to what you knew but you’re not sure you like it that way anymore. It’s the feeling of I was comfortable where I was and I’m not sure how to handle all this everything again. It’s the overwhelming notion to hightail it back to wherever you were before that knot in your chest appears, the panic sets in, and the tears feel as if they’re being held back by a wonky, tiny dam.
‘Compassion is the radicalism of our time’ – The Dalai Lama
But, I still have faith. I still have hope. I believe in science, in medicine, in kindness, in the greater good and in people. There will always be darkness that tries to overshadow the light. There will always be some who choose to use fear, hatred, and sheer force to attempt to block out the good. But, as all of those epic jedis, wookies, ewoks, and resistance fighters remind us again and again, no matter how many times we get knocked down – we can get back up, we have the strength to stand, and there truly are more of us who can turn the tide for the good of humanity.
We will hug again. We will travel again. We will sit on the beach with friends again. With our actions, our choices, and our behavior – we, the people, can make it happen sooner. Whenever you’re keenly ready to take on re-entry, use caution, consider others, and mind your comfort level. Wherever you are this weekend and all other days, stay safe, friends. When it’s safe to hug again – my arms are right here ready and waiting for you.