September 2, 2020

I have heard that if we live long enough, we all get our 15 minutes of fame.  That is apparently true as my 91-year-old mom made the paper last week.  Mom’s article was professionally written and fairly accurate.  It tells of her self-quarantine since last March.  When asked how she was coping during the pandemic she responded, “You meet every day head on and you do what you can.”  Mom mentioned she kept busy with a weekly family zoom call and listening to three different church service broadcasts on Sunday’s, including one from her son in Arkansas (my moment in print!).

Several years ago, Melissa and I were visiting in Arkansas over the Christmas break.  We were trying to get a light display set up at the camp I was director of and had gone into town to examine the different displays in a local park.  This was a walk-through experience that included a small mini train that transported visitors around and through the one square block of light displays.  This was a chilly New Year’s Day and we were the only ones in the park.  A photographer approach and asked if he could take our picture.  He was from the local paper that has a daily feature of people “out and about” and said he had been to three locations and we were the first people he had found.  We were in the next morning’s edition.

Mom and dad had always been active and traveled extensively around the world since his retirement.  I recall mom saying when he died 10 years ago that she would never be able to travel again.  That was before the trips to China and South Africa, not to mention the annual trips to Maine for my sister and the various side trips to family and friends across the country.  Now the only buildings she has entered other than her own are medical buildings for doctor’s appointments.  Just as with many of us, the pandemic has forced mom to change.

THOUGHTS:  Mom’s article ended saying how she hoped for the time when she could resume life as she knew it.  There is no way of knowing when that might happen, but as she said, “You have got to be positive.”  Life as we knew it will probably never return.  That does not mean we will not come through the pandemic.  It just means we will come out of this forever changed.  The same could be said for 9/11 and other transitions that we have faced in the past.  Change does not have to mean bad; it just means different.  It is how we react to change that makes our experience good or bad.   We need to look for the positive.  Change is coming and it starts with you.

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