This column will not be like most of my others.
I consider this space to be a respite from the negativity that seems to crash as a tsunami over us without end. To that point, I’m working on acceptance and surrender; and to my credit, I think I’m doing well at it. It’s the bedrock of my spiritual principles and beliefs. I really do (mostly) believe that all is unfolding as it needs to and the Universe is conspiring for our greatest good.
However, just like you I’m a real person, and I imagine just like you, I’m having a hard time processing what’s happening to us yet again. I’m really ornery about what I think is a preventable fourth (or is it the fifth) wave of the pandemic.
I held faith that when 2020 came to its close, for so many reasons, life would improve. I don’t think any of us felt we’d hold hands and sing Kumbaya while we shared a Coke and taught the world to sing, but there was a bright star rising in the dark sky and, especially as the vaccine made itself known, there was a collective deep breath; a sigh of relief.
Oh well. Here we are, into another surge which is already worse than last summer as well as having the added insult of being preventable if not for people being selfish. (Yes, I get it; some people cannot get a shot but that’s a small percentage of the unvaccinated. Most are either misinformed, confused, or – for whatever reason – consider the vaccine a political statement.) What makes it more frustrating than last year is that in 2020, COVID was still novel and we didn’t know what we were doing; the science was unfolding and we didn’t have a vaccine. Its spread was unavoidable.
Now, 18 months later, we know what to do. We have tools. We could stop this damn thing in its tracks – if it wasn’t for the lies, conspiracy theories, misinformation, and too many folks concerned only about “What’s in it for ME?”
I got my vaccine as soon as I could. Virtually everybody I know did the same. Yes, we did it for our own protection, but there was also a sense of community spirit, patriotism, and a realization that we have to all work together for the greater good to overcome a common enemy. It felt hopeful. I was proud.
Yet, as they say, “all good things must come to an end” and now we watch as people needlessly die or have their lives ripped apart because they refused to do the right thing.
I like to think of myself as empathetic and my heart hurts when I hear some of these stories about people regretting their decisions, asking for the vaccine on their death beds, or bemoaning their decision not to get the shot. Their families still mourn. Their lives are still ripped asunder. Children and parents are still losing each other. There is nothing good in this and I take no joy in bearing witness to this avoidable tragedy, even though 99% or so brought it upon themselves.
Rather, I am sad. I am scared. I am disheartened. I am confused. And I’m so angry.
My wrath is targeted at those who can – but won’t – step up and do the right thing. Mostly, it’s because of them that we’re moving backward.
Yet, even as I write this, I realize I’m falling victim to a meme I so abhor: “Us” versus “Them.” I don’t like that I’m thinking that way. I’m certainly not proud of it. More to the point, my – our – anger is holding us back, not helping the situation.
Yes, feel angry if that’s how you feel. Of course, that is not carte blanche to take it out on others. However mental health requires we acknowledge – rather than deny – how we feel. So, whether you share my sentiments or you think I’m full of crap, you and I each have a right to feel how we feel. That said, we’ll go a long way to get past this whole unfortunate travesty if we can first and foremost move forward with the knowledge that it is compassion and kindness toward each other that will speed us through this, not white-hot unfocused rage.
I want so bad to be passed this. We all do. But the only way through it is to find common ground and work together, leading with love. (Oh yeah, if you haven’t already done so, get the vaccine please – for all of us.)
About the author:
About the author: Scott “Q” Marcus is a professional speaker, motivator, and the founder of the Facebook group: Intentions • Affirmations • Manifestations. He leads no-payment-required zoom inspirational, practical workshops on the first and third Tuesday of each month. Find out more via his mailing list at www.ThisTimeIMeanIt.com/signup