Today the COVID-19 pandemic is affecting all of us. As individuals we react differently to the crisis based on our location, our fears, and our daily challenges. I was raised by parents who were positive thinkers who were used to operating in an environment of risk and uncertainty. They passed on this resilient, optimistic mindset to me.
Winter has melted into Spring, it is blooming towards Summer. The sun climbs high. The seedlings sprout. My feeder is a rest stop for migrating birds.
Nature cannot be confined.
Shops close. Park gates lock. Masked neighbors stay away. I am isolated, but I cannot be confined. I read. I write. My mind is open and free.
I choose a positive attitude. I choose healthy foods. I choose exercise. I choose activities that help me become a better writer, a better speaker, a better human being.
I cannot choose who gets sick and who stays well. I cannot choose when businesses open. I cannot choose when I return to work. I cannot choose other’s reactions to the crisis. So I choose to let those thoughts go.
But choices are two-fold. Not only do we choose what to do, we choose what not to do. I choose not to watch TV or surf the internet for daily pandemic updates. I choose not to snack or drink alcohol because I am home more. I choose not to worry about the situations in the world I cannot control.
I adopt my father’s mantra “Optimism goes a long way”. Practicing optimism is a matter of choice. What will I think about? What will I do? I remember once I told my father, “ I can not choose my thoughts.” “Nonsense” he said. “Telling ourselves what to think is no different than telling ourselves to lift our legs and take a walk. Amy, you have the same control over your thoughts as your physical movements.” He was right.
Today when I feel overwhelmed, worried, frustrated, I will choose to think and act differently. I am resilient. I will choose a Happy Isolation.