In the Eye of the Storm
Oh, the terror of blue skies
with open windows
That let in silent storms
Leaves no longer dancing
quiet fills the air
birds have gone in hiding
we hold our breath and stare
It feels like the world is in pause
God’s thumb is on the remote
The calm before the storm
Time to shutter the windows
against wailing sirens
…this is not a test
The crisis we find ourselves in today, is not a “New Normal”. This viral pandemic that we are experiencing is a domestic wartime crisis. A war for the first time on our soil where all American are feeling hostage in their own homes. We find it happening across the nation; felt in the heart of every American citizen regardless of age, race,color or creed.
There is a plague sweeping across our country and it is murdering us in our homes, our business, our schools, churches and our villages. It seems there is not much more that we can do other that wearing proper P.P.E. and to practice the recommended social distancing. When in the eye of the storm we know there is no going back; we wait for the wind to pick up that will bring in the foreboding clouds gathering on the horizon…and we pray.
Circa 1994 a manmade plague swept through a small country in Africa that wiped out one million citizens in three months’ time. No one saw it coming, no one was prepared, their windows were wide open. There was no immunity, there was no local or world assistance to stop the plague which ran its course in 99 days killing over 1,000,000 innocents which was 70% of one vulnerable population. It profoundly changed their country and neighboring countries. The Country is Rwanda. The virus was genocide.
A population unprepared for the storm, a government unprepared to halt it, and a live media broadcast that only fanned more mounting deaths. Chaos, mayhem, unfiltered aggression and the brutal knife murders of men, women and children ensued. Peasants, teachers, doctors, neighbors, relatives and friends murdered in while in mid step in the light of day. Sound familiar? This virus is a great equalizer. We are in the eye of the storm; the other edge is coming. COVID-19 is literally in the air. Microscopic Hutu killers armed with machetes are coming to your village. Close your windows. Turn off Fox news and stay inside. Paint lamb’s blood on the lintel and doorposts of your home if you must but remain at home. Survive.
One year ago, I was in Amsterdam with my wife for the trip of a lifetime. While there we were urged to see The Resistance Museum which was dedicated the Dutch resistance during WWII. The theme that was concurrent throughout the tour were the words used by the resistance in their efforts to stave off the murderous activities of the invading Nazis.
The words: COMPLY, COLLABORATE, RESIST.
A lethal virus had arrived slowly from Germany and soon enveloped all the Netherlands. The city of Rotterdam lost 1,000 residents in one day. Amsterdam immediately started to prepare, started to resist the rapidly spreading virus that was already present in their city. Three things happened in Amsterdam.
- People COMPLIED with all government recommendations issued for the invading virus without question. They by majority were the middle class and the educated masses. This is our “new normal” they said, this too will pass. It can’t be as bad as they say, many other countries have the virus and are complying. Our leaders know what they are doing.
- People COLLABORATED with the virus itself. Many did not heed the public recommendations; many communities actually inviting the virus into their homes. They fed it, they introduced it to their family, close friends and with people that they worked with; most of whom also thought that life will go on as usual; this isn’t so bad; nothing wrong here; I’m healthy, I’m happy. We may lose many of the old, the sick, the infirm, the helpless and the homeless but they are acceptable losses for the good of the nation. The majority will survive and be stronger for it.
- People RESISTED the virus. They knew it was coming; saw that it was threatening to destroy their city, their country, Europe and the world. They stayed at home, they went into hiding, they practiced social distancing, they armed themselves with intellect to survive, they help create change to help others survive. It was impossible to kill the man-made virus, but they empowered themselves to resist its damage and ultimately its mortality. They sacrificed and resisted with all they had until the virus was defeated.
COVID-19 is that invading Nazi soldier, it is that marauding Hutu madman, it is that reckless collaborator. How are your reacting to this malicious attack in your community? Think carefully. Are you Complying, Collaborating or Resisting?
- Are you complying with all local, state and federal law? Are you complying with common-sense hygiene rules to mitigate the spread of the virus for the greater good? Are you staying home?
- Are you collaborating by hindering mitigation efforts with arrogant disregard for containment recommendations ? Are you denying data and allowing your selfish and ignorant behaviors to contribute to the reckless spread of the virus?
- Are you resisting the temptation to break the rules? Are you taking this pandemic drop dead serious? Pun intended. Are you protecting yourself and your family to the best of your ability? Are you reaching out to others in creative ways other than proximity contact? Are you one of those heroes who is resisting this invasion on the front line? Are you a physician, hospital employee, police officer, fire fighter, paramedic, national guard or volunteer who looks the virus straight in the eye every single day? You are the resistance, saying back off…you do not win?
We are in the eye of storm at this writing the first day of April 2020, but this is no joke. It is time to batten the hatches, lower the sail, latch the portals and hunker down and ride this storm out. Even the madmen, psychotic shooters, and suicide terrorists are staying the fuck at home. Comply. Resist. Do not collaborate.
Do your part for your Body. Eat healthy foods with lots of probiotics/prebiotics to boost your immune system, try to maintain regular walking indoors or out, and get some sun on your face at least once a day if possible. Drink lots of water (best warm). Gargle with antiseptic mouthwash or heavily salted warm water often for a full minute. The virus incubates in the back of the throat, it dies in the stomach but thrives in the lungs. Cold liquids encourage cell replication.
Do your part for your Mind. Read and self-educate about the virus, how it works, protection, mitigation, vaccines, routes of infection, activities and medication/supplements that may help. Question, compare, research; empower yourself with tools to best defend and or cope with the virus.
Do your part for your Spirit. Practice mindfulness, self-introspection, listen to music, create, write, sing, play, volunteer, practice peace, compassion for others, pray for others and consult your higher power or you greatest good. Depend on it.
Do your part for your Soul. Practice self-compassion, carefully weigh decisions, compare, compromise and re-create your life to survive. Do the research. Resist impulse: make well informed choices, draw to your strong suit, be your assets.
The “New Normal” is a term was spawned from the 2008 financial crisis not our current pandemic. Grief from a loss is not a new normal either but has been applied in that context. A shortage of a mediocre commodity like toilet paper is not a new normal. Bars & restaurants closed nationwide is not a new normal. Not being able to hug your children/grandchildren is not a new normal. This is all out war. Wars end. Life will return to a semblance of what it was. If it does not, we are in trouble.
When there is war at anytime, anywhere as in grief we will have collateral damage and collateral blessings. From this war with COVID-19 there will be extreme fallout after it has run its course. There will be many casualties. Many unsuspecting individuals will get sick and die leaving the dance floor in the middle of song; no more today and no tomorrow; so much unsaid, unfinished, uncreated, unfulfilled; a life undone.
So many families will be inheriting grief and loss instantly. Something that they never imagined. Life will never be the same and they will have to reimagine their altered path to survive. The whole world will have to reimagine its altered path to survive and for our children to survive, as well as the sustainability of our planet.
This is not a new normal but a new challenge. The collateral blessing from this virulent pandemic is that just maybe, just maybe, that in combating this common global enemy together…we may stop killing each other.
Be your best, be prepared. Use this time in the eye of storm wisely and expeditiously, it may just save your life or that of someone you love. Self-Isolate to protect and to inhibit the spread.
This is not a drill, it is not a hoax or conspiracy theory, there will be over a million dead worldwide by summer’s end, and the true journey will begin for each one of us. Are you be prepared for the coming storm that will follow this calm? Will you be prepared for another storm next year?
Be your best asset. Gather tools, educate your mind.
Practice wise nutrition for your body.
Connect with your higher power to empower your spirit.
Make informed decisions from the seat of your soul. Embrace your uniqueness.
Not being in-sync with our own natural balance is our only weakness.
Make a ripple and ride it like a leaf on a stream. Take your mulligan; be your phoenix; the world is changing; be the change you want to see in the world. Be here now, but for now, do it at home for the greater good.