I find myself with all the other millions upon millions of people, floundering through this uncertain time. Some moments, the weight of it all consumes me as I imagine the details of this Pandemic unfold within the grieving families of loved ones lost and the countless others lying sick, holding onto life in isolating silence. I picture hospitals overflowing and healthcare workers pushed to the end of themselves as they give everything they have to save precious lives while risking their own.
Each day when I read the headlines or watch the news, that deep knot in the pit of my stomach, that has been there since this all began, twists tighter and tighter. All I can do is close my eyes and take deep prayerful breaths to try and ease its clenching ache.
As the numbers continue to rise with COVID-19, almost everyone knows someone who has been infected and many know someone who has died from it too. And each time I hear of another death, my heart sinks in a heavy-weighted sorrow that lingers on for all the people who have experienced such devastating loss. I keep hoping that if I can carry these pieces of pain in my heart, it would somehow lessen theirs.
Then there’s the toll this is taking on our economy, our schools, our businesses, our homes, and families, leaving nothing untouched by this ongoing tragedy. So many people are struggling in so many ways and I wonder how we will ever recover from all that is happening. It seems almost impossible to imagine what life will look like for us all, what our futures will be.
I allow my emotions to unravel, spilling out angst, and a dizzying swirl of overwhelm that grips my chest and chokes my breath. My thoughts take a sharp turn into my own life, my family, our health and finances, and my kids managing through this shelter-in-place life, missing so much of what used to be and heartbroken for all the things that will never happen now. Life for them before this Pandemic was already full of hard things, but this is an entirely new level of hard. Their futures are a blurry fog of uncertainty with no answers to all their questions, no plans we can put in place, no clear sign of how things will unfold.
When this pandemic began, the harsh winds chilled the air and our view outside was filled with a desolate landscape of death and emptiness as if Mother Nature understood humanity’s plight and mirrored it with her dark, colorless world.
But as weeks went on, the seasons slowly changed and the birth of life began. Hope emerged in the budding trees and newfound growth peeking up from the ground. I heard the songs of birds everywhere, as they built their nests in hidden branches, while all the squirrels and rabbits came out to play. The days grew longer as the sun shined brighter allowing more light in our lives. It’s as if joy found its way back into the earth once again.
When the temperatures warmed and I went on my long walks, I felt a new reverence for this awakening of spring, more than I ever have before. I had somehow assumed that, while the world came to a screeching halt, the earth and all its creatures would too. But time has a life of its own. It keeps moving forward proving its reliability over and over again.
I soaked in the tiny buds on the trees slowly opening up into glorious displays of color. I relished in the flowers blooming and the landscape that was once dark and dead, springing back to life just as it always had, just as it always will. The miracle of such things is my greatest comfort. It reminds me of the magnificence of the universe, unyielding, relentless in its power. There is a constant assurance that creation is mightily at work and nothing can interrupt its plan. It moves forward bringing with it, a new dawn from each dark night. For the sun sets and rises with a will of its own and I’m thankful for this unchanging truth amidst so many unknowns.
Time is our healer as it always has been and always will be. Throughout our world’s history of wars and plagues, disasters, and devastations, it’s time that has taken us to the end of each tragic story, bringing with it restoration and recovery, change, and growth.
And this is our hope, as we all press on- That time will carry us through.
So, we’ll wait patiently, while stilling ourselves in the desolate landscape of our lives. We’ll look for signs of new life, new joy, new hope in our dark days of despair. And we’ll discover our strength and resilience while this story finds its end.