It’s my sincere wish that all of you are healthy, living your best socially distant lives, and that you’ve found some sort of peace in this madness. John and I are doing remarkably well, to the point where I’m having to stave off feelings of guilt about it and justify my sense of calm to others.
Thanks to the depression meds leveling my imbalance and the re-introduction of restorative sleep my metabolism has kicked back in. I’m at my healthiest weight in years, and although John could use a little more meat on his bones, he’s at his lowest pain level in decades. The two odd ducks swimming in their quiet little world are once again not part of the masses. It’s funny how life works when you look at it both from macro and micro perspectives.
Since taking the social media deep-dive a year ago, my circle of friends and acquaintances is also larger than it’s ever been. What was once sporadic communication with mostly family and the occasional friend from high school has morphed into hundreds of conversations daily with people all across the globe. It’s almost an embarrassment of riches, and true to form it’s starting to cause me embarrassment.
I can’t recall a day since the pandemic began to alter our lives when at least one of my new friends failed to ask me how I was coping. My typical response has been that we’re figuring it out or managing. I’ve also pointed out a few times that it’s not that much different than my pre-quarantine life. In my head it was a funny spin to put on my quiet existence to lighten the mood. Just yesterday it hit me though that it’s not as authentic of a response as I like to give.
Yes, I was doing social distancing way before it became cool or a mandate. There’s no falsehood to be found there. But much like when cases appear before an appellate court judge, I began to determine “Is the SPIRIT of the truth upheld?” The complete truth is that I’m much more socially close than I’ve been at any point in my life, and I’m doing it in a way that enhances my life rather than detracting from it.
I’m no longer being pulled in directions that I don’t want to go, down paths of obligation versus choice. People who used to call on me to do things for them because I was the only one in the circle without a paying job are now doing the tasks themselves to occupy their newly minted free time. The “is there any way you could…” calls have all but ceased and I’m free to pursue the interests that fill my own spirit. It’s the perfect set-up for a life of joy and fulfillment.
Why do I feel so guilty then?
The guilt stems from where all guilt does…the feeling that we are somehow unworthy. Our minds envision the suffering of others and want to better their circumstances, even at the expense of our own. Why is fortune choosing our life to bless when some faceless person (or worse yet, a recognizable one) is struggling? The answer to that is the key to shedding the guilt and using your blessings to the greatest good.
So what is it, you ask?
It’s the acceptance of the fact that it takes blessed people to bless others. Someone is required to have an abundance in order to be of service to more than just a handful of people. Be it the doctors and nurses who have an abundance of skill and compassion, or the farmers who have an abundance of crops. Whether it’s the food service worker, once overlooked as an “entry level” employee or the someone on a factory line producing goods or services we need to get through this crisis.
Their strengths are coming to play in our new normal like never before. They’re being shoved, however unwillingly, into a spotlight that many of them aren’t used to, and it’s bound to cause some stage fright. From my personal experience, they are overcoming it quickly though and taking up the mantles of responsibility.
I’m going to take a cue from them now and operate from a place of total honesty. My goal the next time I’m asked how I’m doing is to be utterly truthful without guilt and to reply, “I’m thriving. How can I help you thrive too?”
As always, I wish you peace and blessings, and pray you find your way to use your strengths to shine your special light in the darkness. Thank you for reading. XOXO