Take a good long look

(also known as my only Covid-19 post)

Let’s talk about mirrors

On a good day, when we have warning, a mirror is not horrifying. It’s pretty good, actually. Hair combed? Check. Clean face? Check. Lip gloss? A bit of makeup? Okay! Looking in the mirror is doable! Give a wink and a gun and carry on. You’ve got this.

Now let’s talk about C-19 and mirrors

However the Covid-19 mirror is a whole other story. There is no wink and gun. Makeup? Probably not so much.  Sleepy faces. Messy buns. Sweat pants. And a sloppy relaxed way of being. Slow and safe in our homes— dodging the mirrors. Even so Covid-19, left unsatisfied said “hey man, you not only get a mirror, you also get a magnifying glass.” Yikes!!  And that’s when you discover your lady moustache is out of control, or there’s a chunk of spinach in your teeth from Tuesday. You thank God you’re social distancing and those masks are suddenly a brilliant accessory.

Take a good long look at yourself

The mirror and magnifying glass not only show us our lady moustaches, blackheads and un-flossed teeth—that metaphorical magnifying mirror shows our character. And it’s ruthless!

C-19 truly enhancs who we are. It really does. If you’re a resilient person it has brought out the “okay, I’ve got this” mentality. If you are fearful it had you lining up at the store purchasing too much toilet paper and Lysol wipes, canned goods, dry goods, yeast, hording the most ridiculous things all in fear of lack. If you are anxious you may have been self-medicating with extra helpings of your favorite Malbec or Cab-sauv. If you are a naysayer it’s the end of the world and if you’re a do-gooder you are running extra errands, leaving groceries on people’s steps and checking in on them. Bless you. The whole pandemic just made us more us—more who we are. It’s amplified us to ourselves and our people. If you’ve never thought about this until now, well, you’re welcome.

Besides being careful with our germs we were given the opportunity to take a long hard look at ourselves, our character and our lives. How do we exist when all the distractions are stripped away—when we’re not at work, at the gym, running our kids here and there—when we’re not chit chatting with colleagues like we used to and now we’re with our families 24/7. Or in my case pretty much completely alone almost all the time.

A long, long look

It may be uncomfortable or it may be perfectly alright. But in any case we should look.  We were forced to stop everything.  The pause button was hit. We can notice the silence and the other sounds that come from it—see how it feels—and learn from it or maybe just remind ourselves of things we need reminding of.

Grateful

I’m going to speak in general terms here. I believe that we are blessed by an agreeability in Saskatchewan.  It is remarkable that when the province shut down everyone quietly went to their homes, maybe grumbling, maybe freaked out and nervous, maybe subtly shaking a fist but they did it.  They went home and closed their doors and stayed there—mostly.

Everyone kept track of the numbers. I’ve never been much of a numbers person myself. I struggled with math but during the pandemic I’d be watching those numbers wondering if that’s how stock traders feel. Numbers up. Numbers down. No changes. All get some kind of a reaction.

We all stepped back and watched each other, nosy neighbors from the window. I noticed a lot more people walking around here.  There was sort of an irony in that. While the rest of the world was showing empty streets (New York, London, Venice) the traffic in front of my house increased tenfold!! Everyone was walking. Walking their dog. Walking their spouse. Walking their kid. Their baby. Just walking.  Getting fresh air. Decompressing. Getting out of the house because—there was nowhere else to go.

The only real place to look

There’s really only place to look.  Inward.

Deep, right?  Good. 

Because that’s where the answers are—and we all deserve some time there, no matter how uncomfortable.

Now, give yourself a wink and a gun and carry on!

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