We are in the midst of a global pandemic. With that comes panic and fear. This fear has caused people to act irrationally, and selfishly. We are seeing the ugly side of society. I have firsthand seen the aisles of Wal-Mart void of toilet paper. I asked someone yesterday where sanitizer would be (not out of panic, but because the bottle that I keep in my van is running low) and she pointed to where there was a last container of wipes. There was a woman standing right beside them, reach up and grabbed them, turned to me and said, “I have four kids at home”. I wanted to yell back and tell her than I have three and they are just as important, but what point would that have proven?
However, in the midst of this, we are also seeing kindness and genuine compassion. I have friends who are offering to babysit, free of charge, to those parents who must work, and their children are out of school. I have seen people post that if someone doesn’t have enough food, to message them and they will make sure they have it. I have seen strangers help each other reach Clorox wipes. I have seen true compassion.
I understand that fear is a motivator of many people’s actions. Businesses and schools are shutting down. Sporting events have been cancelled. Basically, many aspects of our busy culture are being taken from us. It is not up to me to debate where these actions are warranted, because I am not an expert. I will make the most of the situation by slowing down, and spending quality time with my loved ones. Playing games, doing puzzles, playing outside.
I understand the reasons behind these actions is for the safety of others, and to not overwhelm the health care system. I have many loved ones who are immunocompromised, elderly, or that have respiratory issues. I am glad that precautions are being taken to help alleviate the spread of this illness. However, I also understand the concern that parents have about childcare, and their children’s education.
This is an unprecedented event. Nobody knows what will happen, and nobody really knows what the right answer is. The best we can do, as in any situation, is to pray. Pray for those who are making the choices, pray for those who contract the virus, pray for those who are more susceptible, pray that we can handle this event with kindness and compassion. The best we can do is choose kindness.