This is our darkest hour. When the bottom falls out. Courage gives way to fear, and hope follies to despair; But only if we let it.
We can choose to tuck tail and run. We can hoard supplies, gouge prices and squabble over arbitrary differences. It would however, be a disservice to ourselves.
This is a terrifyingly uncertain time. Businesses worry about sustainability. Parents worry about their children’s education. Children fear for their parent’s health. We must not give in to the trepidation.
From our very founding, struggle has always been the catalyst of our ascendance.
During the Revolutionary War, we stood tall against tyranny. In the 40s, our vigilance helped to defeat hate. During the Civil Rights Movement, we marched in the streets to fight against inequality. On 9/11 we came together as a unified nation.
Our elders have shown us that no matter how tumultuous the path, we must press on. It’s not a matter of if we should, but when; and the time is now.
Medical professionals are working tirelessly to heal the sick. Grocery store workers are potentially exposing themselves every day so that we can continue to have some semblance of normalcy.
State and local governments are creating programs to keep small businesses afloat. The world continues to turn despite the gravity of our situation.
If you’re stuck at home, watching the days go by from behind your window, you’re not alone. Let me repeat that. You are not alone.
So, what can we, the common people, do to contribute to the cause from the comfortable constraints of our homes?
The short answer is, a lot.
First and foremost, stay home. If don’t need to be out among others, don’t be. Second, keep your head. Even though our daily lives have almost certainly been shredded, there are ways to maintain your sanity. Have your morning coffee, make that gourmet breakfast you don’t typically have time for, get a work out in, do something creative and new to keep your mind limber, dust off that book you never finished.
Next, think of something practical you can do for your community. Maybe start a discussion on social media, or send cards to folks in nursing homes who are most assuredly lonely right now. Reach out to old friends who may just need to talk about nothing for a while.
Finally, don’t lose hope. It’s OK to be afraid. Just don’t let it control your life. Reconciliation rests around the bend.
History has taught us time and time again that pervasive nature of the human spirit is resilient. Show me a tragedy, and I’ll show you a coalition of compassion and love.
So, as we ride this storm out from behind our windows and watch the daily struggle to conquer this newest threat, please remember, the more trying the battle, the harder we fight.
You see, it is in these moments of mountainous obstacles, we are made.
Herm Meadows, Charleston
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