In my recent reader survey, one reader shared this (remarkably prescient) comment:
“The world moves too quickly now and we are expected to keep the pace but in my opinion it is far from healthy and we need to realize that.”
Here I am, in my home office, typing at my computer, surrounded by kantha blankets. This is nothing new; in fact, my work situation (and my husband, Wayne’s) is, on its best & most productive days, remarkably resemblant to “social isolation” or “social distancing”. Some weeks (most weeks?), I barely leave my neighborhood.
But the difference is the distant sound of piano keys pounded, the wrestling in the other room… the presence of three extra bodies in the house on an otherwise normal school week. And: the encouragement from both our government and our culture that we should not interact with the people or places we normally do, indefinitely.
Busy life, life full of movement and activity and hustle/bustle… it currently does not exist.
So, what to make of this? When the culture around us slows down to a halt, do we see the situation as an inconvenience?
Or, can we sift through the fear & frustration to embrace it as a gift?
I have been saddened by reading some comments (never read the comments! 🙉) borne out of pain, fear, & powerlessness. There was one list titled Seize the Opportunity of Home Quarantine and included ideas like "Learn to bake", "Write letters of love or thanks", "Phone old friends".
There were many frivolous & fun ideas, too, which inspired comments that lamented an inability to "just stay home" or actively participate in many of the "romantic" ideas listed.
It is completely legitimate to be in a financial or physical situation that doesn't allow the luxury of "free time" or ability. These are real concerns with deep implications. But, during wartime, if someone was at home writing letters and baking bread, does that imply they were not supporting the war efforts?
Seek the gift in your circumstance — whatever it may be — and let's cling to a generous spirit towards others, shall we? This unprecedented moment in time will bring a lot of pain.
But, I am choosing to do the little things I can and try to proceed, one step at a time, in the way of the good. Right now, those steps won't take me beyond my living room. ;)
(Photo courtesy of Friends of Basha)
Reflections from my experience visiting a Brothel in Bangladesh
As impossible as it is for me to believe now, earlier in 2020 I flew around the world. The primary objective was to visit Bangladesh and see, in person, the life-changing work in which dignify has had the privilege to participate over these past 8 years.
A friend recently asked on Facebook for “the most challenging and enlightening resource you have read/watched about the problem of racism in America”. This question received numerous responses within the day: half a dozen films, dozens of books, podcasts, courses, and other hubs of information resources (as well as the astute reply, “Conversation”, which is, of course, the most relational and human of “resources”).
I think that this experience was shared by most people in early June (as protests & concerns over racial injustice had reached a critical volume): so many resources, so much to learn.
But now, 2 months later… what have we done with the magnitude of worthy, fascinating, perspective-altering information & insights that have been brought to our attention?
And this it only in the area racial injustice. In other interests & concerns: How much do we know? How much have we learned & read & listened to already?
Approximately 25 years ago (in March 2020), we did a customer/reader survey. I asked what you like to read on the blog & one of the respondents suggested a post on "living generously". What a fabulous idea and perfect for this time in history!
[The title of this post implies some kind of authority or expertise — ha! Nope, no experts here... just some thoughts on generosity from a fellow human, trying to make my way!]