We are at a moment in history when we can try to maintain life as we knew it before social distancing, self-quarantine, and disruption of our daily regimens, or we can transform into a new way of living based on what we are learning (positive and negative) about ourselves and others.
When our world opens up again, we can go back to our lives as before. And that may be wonderful. Some of us will go back to work. Children will return to playgrounds and possibly school. We will be able to take eat out, attend sporting events, go to the theater or the movies. We will be able to worship together again.
Some of our return to “normal,” whatever normal is, may conform to the old adage, “That’s the way I’ve/we’ve always done it.” We may return to our prejudices, our unthinking consumerism, our busy-ness that shuts out others, our concepts of us and them, or our unthinking ways of moving through life without handwashing and touching our face. We can conform. We may try to become who we “used to be.”
We have another option. We can transform. Because we are spending time alone or with families, we can assess what is valuable about this time. What have we been able to do that we usually don’t/can’t do? How have our priorities changed? What do we no longer need to complain about because it is no longer important?
Transformations can be large or small. For example, one person decided to make her own toilet wipes that are washable. She cut up an old shower curtain to use for #1 wiping. This saves on the use of precious toilet paper. She likes the transformed way so much that she vows she will continue doing it when toilet paper is once again in full supply.
Other people may decide that they like their hair its natural color after they have not able to get to their hair stylist.
Some who have gone through the devastating realization that their place of work is permanently closed may begin to explore other, maybe more satisfying, ways of taking care of themselves and their families.
Some people will decide that intimate relationships will be stronger when they make time to connect. Some have realized that a relationship is no longer healthy and must be dealt with.
Our country is united right now in facing this pandemic. Will we conform to what was before, or will we transform into a new way of being American people with truth and justice for all?
These illustrations of conforming or transforming are just a few of the ways that life will or will not change. Where we choose to conform or transform will be particular to us. What is important that we ask ourselves the question: Will I choose to conform or transform? Where will I find my strength and guide no matter my choice?