When is the last time you spoke with someone you never really speak to regularly. I am not in the social media universe so am unable to follow along with the wall postings and insta pics and tick-tocking timelines.
I was given a suggestion a while back that if the thought of calling someone pops into your head, do not delay, if not for you - for them. How much do you miss getting a letter mailed to you from some far away place? Receiving birthday cards, anniversary wishes, Easter sentiments via the snail mailbox is still, shall we say, exhilarating in the existentially appreciative-of-being-thought -of reminder sort of way.
But what of the phone call, with or without video. The tone of voice carries so much more weight than intoning our own emotions onto the text or email or Hallmarkian code we read. Hearing the smile or the frown, we feed our soul with the sound of another human being. Measured by the music you listen to that draws your attention to your thoughts and your heart, the sound of a loved one has the power to carry you out of yourself.
The same holds true for a friend, a colleague, heck even the off-shore support for technical issues lends an opportune ear to escape a day cast in doubt or glorified in grace. If the thought of calling someone comes up, do not delay - if not for you for them.
Be your best today. If you walked out of your house each day to go to work or visit family or get your errands completed with a smile on your face. Chances are you still have that smile today.
Use it to help someone else. Your face has muscle memory and that smaller needs to show up when you are on the phone or talking to your new found isolation family. That smile will change the tone of your voice. It will pick you up and keep those around you grateful.
Smiles are infectious. There is no better time to build muscle memory. Smile and make it a beautiful day.
I will start by reminding myself how much I love my parents. They’re fun. After 7 decades of rockin’ out life as it comes they get some leeway, some freedom to explore the nether regions of fear and news and epidemics. They missed the Spanish Flu so maybe they are just suffering from FOMO on our most recent virus veritas.
My family snowbirds in the Redneck Riviera, also known as the Gulf-Coast-Flobama-Alarida. A wonderful place with relaxing beaches and zip-lining and restaurants. Having the opportunity to escape the doldrums of winter, while also insisting that your family visit you so that they to can get out of snow banked depression, is cool. Unless an epidemic strikes and people start freaking out and you’re fed daily news that there won’t be any food or gas or toilet paper.
First and foremost. Toilet paper being hoarded is the perfect symbolic statement of what a shit-storm is when you don’t wash your hands and listen to whatever garbage news feed pops up in your timeline. If you are self-quarantining some extra rolls are worthy but why would there be a production shortage of paper. It stinks just thinking about it.
Blessed to be directed to stay put. Bummed to miss out on beach time. Directed to gather supplies in case of an early return by the snowbirds. I don’t have a Costco card. Nor do I have a desire to stock up on the canned goods and hunker-down supplies. Luckily if you do have an account you can have your supplies shipped anywhere. Thusly, we have become the distribution hub of the family fear factoring.
It surprises me that they would want to be home early. Enjoy the beach and your last breath. The reason given for the early return was that there could be a shortage of gas. If no one is going anywhere why would there be a gas shortage? A surplus is in order. Side note - folks not going anywhere has literally cleared the air in China. The fear of not being able to get home sucks. The fear that once you get home all you have to survive on is SPAM and toilet paper, personally that is much worse.
I look forward to seeing my parents again, sooner or later, but just in case I take solace in the fact that SPAM was the only remaining canned meat they could purchase and so I shall have an everlasting memory of their sacrifice.
I'd rather march on than be carried away by the corona conversation. My hopes is that we will look back on this deadly outbreak years from now and say, "Can you believe no one has gotten a cold in, like, ever bro." You know because everybody started washing their hands and not touching their face and took daily measures to be as healthful as possible.
That outcome is just as likely as extinction.
Death has a way of sneaking up on us, so make today the absolute best you can for everyone in your realm of influence.
Comedy Store trained, World-travelled, Cul-de-sac-living recovering comedian, husband and tinkerer of tools talking about time well spent!