These are strange and difficult times. Pandemic. Protest. Fear. Violence. Death. Stupid people… wait, sorry.
I should be kinder.
In fact, everyone should be kinder.
The ripple effect of fear and – let’s face it – stupidity means people act in ways that make life worse for the people around them.
Harassing people for wearing/not wearing a mask. Keying cars with out-of-province license plates. Buying all the toilet paper (surely we’re done with that one, right?)
Ignoring the images of heartbreaking violence and racism seen in the media and seen with our own eyes because “I’m not racist.”
Closer to home, the woman walking on our beach who refused to acknowledge my greeting. The anonymous “tip” that brought an RCMP officer to our house to confirm we were self-isolating. (We are.)
Were these people afraid? Stupid? Or just unkind?
All I know is that I feel beleaguered – by these strange and difficult times, and by people who are making it worse. I haven’t hugged my kids for four months. I can’t cuddle my first grandchild, can’t kiss his face, rock him to sleep. I had a book published just before the pandemic shut down our country, and it’s going nowhere.
Not big or important losses in a shifting, frightened, transforming world, but huge in MY world.
We all have our own little worlds. What’s happening in the larger, global world is important and needs our attention (we’ll just sidestep the risks of indulging too deeply in the sometimes festering bog known as social media here, if you don’t mind…).
But we need to pay attention to the little worlds around us, too. We are the tiny atoms that work together to make up our universe.
We need to support each other with kindness and understanding.
Kindness. It’s worth repeating, and repeating, and repeating.
These are strange and difficult times, but the ripple effect is in our hands. For worse, or for better.