My Thoughts on COVID-19
Updated: May 22, 2020
There are so many thoughts swirling around in my head about the current COVID-19 crisis and worldwide lockdown. I’m sure there are plenty of thoughts running rampant in everyone else’s minds too. In many ways, we are all in the same boat. In other ways, our experiences differ based on the roles we hold and the people in our lives who look to us.
We’re all in this together…
I am faced with many of the same choices as everyone else about how I spend my time.
How much work will I do today? Should I write? Train? Maybe I’ll do some general admin work? Will I lay around and Netflix binge today? What about working on a home project...the garage maybe? That bookshelf that needs to be organized? Maybe I’ll read? Do I really need to watch the news today? Nah. Are there any new funny COVID parody videos that will make me smile?
On top of that, any and all organizations that I have ever done business with or interacted with are talking about COVID, making it impossible to escape. At first, everyone was talking about staying at home and washing our hands. Now, I guess that’s finally the understood “given”. Today, everyone is framing how they see the crisis, how they are supporting their communities, and how much they love medical professionals. It is a strange state of affairs to have everyone in essentially one of two places in society - sheltered at home or working on the frontlines. Very strange and uniquely unifying in some ways.
I’m one of the “high-risk” people…
In addition to dealing with the struggles that many can relate to, I am a walking autoimmune disease. Not only do I have alopecia universalis (which causes my baldness), but more importantly, I have mixed connective tissue disease (MCTD), a rare disorder that causes my immune system to attack all sorts of things in my body. Because of my condition, I take an immunosuppressant, which just as it sounds, suppresses my immune system so it attacks me less. This makes me more susceptible to catch anything and everything floating around out there. I’ve learned that I just have to take things slower and have lots of grace for myself when I’m in pain or have super low energy.
I remain extra vigilant by not venturing into any public places at all, with or without protective “gear”. It feels pretty intense, but I remain social, sometimes being on up to 3 or 4 Zoom meetings a day with friends, colleagues, or clients.
Serving in this weird season...
As a follower of Christ, my heart’s desire is to be out there serving my community and showing God’s love to the vulnerable. This crisis has made me more vulnerable than I’m used to. It’s an interesting position to be one of those in need in both the health-risk arena and the income-loss arena. I have chosen to stay in a posture of gratitude and acceptance and to spread that posture to others as much as I’m able with a phone call or from behind my computer.
In my work...
As an entrepreneur, this season looks like brainstorming creative ways to pivot my business. These developments can be exciting on one hand and dreadfully demotivating reality-checks on the other hand.
Going through this as a travel advisor has been surreal, to say the least. My entire job is to serve people’s travel needs. I do the research for trips and I serve as a concierge when people are on their trips. One big problem. No one is traveling right now. My heart is to serve my clients, so I grapple with how I can best be there for people in this time.
I just continue to tell my clients that I’m here and will be here when they’re ready, but it feels like it’s not the time for selling. It’s quite the predicament to have a business that has essentially been shut down with no specific time period or direction as to how long it’s going to take to come back. Every day, I just do the best I can. I keep encouraging people to dream of the future, and I remind myself and everyone else that it will not always be this way. We will travel again. What exactly that will look like, no one knows for sure, but I want to be ready to serve when it’s time, so I have to stay fresh and alert.
As lifelong learners, it’s true that COVID-19 has presented us with unique opportunities to hone our skills and knowledge and to prepare our businesses for a mass of people once this crisis is over. While this season has come with uncertainties, grievances, and pressures that are unique to each one of us, we can embrace the season for the opportunities as well.
What about you?
I want to hear about how this crisis is impacting you. If you are a parent of school-aged children, I’m sure that you are experiencing this very differently. If you are in school or in the work-force and are just now learning to handle everything remotely, there are other challenges you may be facing. For those of you who actually have family and/or friends struck with the illness, or even worse, have experienced death in your community during this time, I can only imagine how this unprecedented season is impacting you. I grieve with you...
Overall, the world has been most focused on sorting out financial and physical needs. How can we help to meet one another’s emotional and mental needs? I look forward to hearing your thoughts and to connecting with you further as we brave the world of COVID-19 together.