Updated: Mar 16, 2020
I find it so fascinating what is happening in the world right now. I am learning so much about human behavior. This virus has caused the world to shut down for the most part. Italy is closed, Spain is closed, schools are closed all over the world, grocery stores look ransacked.
And what the hell is it about the toilet paper? I know people think that they have to hoard it, but please, people, I have 12 rolls left and then I have to turn to baby wipes and paper towels. Share your spoils.
However, thank you for leaving the Ben and Jerry's Chocolate Fudge Brownie ice cream.
I decided to hoard that.
We managed to get our first Fortitude event in just before everything started to shut down. Although I did have 4 people cancel on me the day of and some just didn't show. A few even lied about their reasons, which was unnecessary, and many just ignored my personal invites. At first I was put off by that, to be frank. However, I have figured out that when you do this sort of thing you have to keep that drive and compassion to help people heal and live better lives, but also develop a thick skin. When doing what you believe in, you may not get the support that you thought you would from everyone. And that's okay! Keep going with your vision, keep loving and keep giving. Surround yourself with people you trust and don't let people step on your vision. (I'll write another Blog about this subject).
So we had a really great event and 33 people showed up just as a pandemic was beginning! I'm a grateful woman! I got to celebrate the release of my new book, give out “swag bag” gifts to everyone that was there, watch them paint and create, and build them up strong. That is my vision. My Heaven.
What I find so fascinating about this pandemic is my youngest son's reactions to all that is happening. He is 17, going on 30, so he has an incredible mature perspective on it. is handling it with a maturity that I don't think I had until I was 40.
At 22 years old in 1989 around 5:04 pm, I was driving home from work. I was sitting at a stop light when I thought the car behind me bumped me. Then we all began to roll up and down as the road rippled like a wave in the ocean, and the street lights swung violently. I looked at the guy next to me in the car (I was terrified) and he just shrugged his shoulders as if to say, “Well, not much we can do...”.
You just can't believe it's actually happening.
It was the Loma Prieta earthquake and I was living in San Jose, CA. Dangerously close to the epicenter that rocked at 6.9. It killed 63 people and injured 3,757. The aftershocks were frequent and were registering an average of 5.4 on the Richter scale. Yes I am comparing a trauma that effected one area to this global pandemic that hasn't been seen in centuries, but the reference is the same.
When I was 22, young and really so innocent, I was witness to the devastation of this terrible quake. Fortunately, no one in my family was hurt, but we cried many tears, were very shaken, and had a lot of broken glass to deal with, especially at my grandparents home. But the event itself was one that we couldn't believe we were facing.
Okay, okay.... I know, I grew up in California, so you might be saying,
“What? You couldn't believe you were facing it? You live on a crack in the earth!”
But still... when something like what we are facing now hits us, we all sit here with our mouths hanging open saying, “God, is this really happening?”
I did that when the earth quake hit and I am doing it now. I am fascinated because my son will see something like this pandemic come and go in his lifetime, and be able to look back on this with such wonder and will develop his own view of these past events and say, “I remember that.” And then linger on how it affected his family, his community and the world.
I suppose it's the same thing as us all remembering where we were when we sat crying in front of our televisions, or maybe even live, and watched the Twin Towers fall.
You just can't believe it's happening.
The difference between those moments and this one is that those traumas happened in one day, yet we can still fell the devastating and painful impact. This adversity we are facing globally is one that may go on for an extended period of time. And will have a global impact on economy and on the heart of every nation.
But I am not here to be Negative Nelly. You see enough of that on the news (which I stay away from). How my son takes all of this in is important to me. I sat down and had an Oreo cookies and milk picnic in our family room with he and my older son (still cool to do at any age) to talk about what was going on in the world. I want him to move through his life fearless, but smart. Full of faith, but not stupid.
I have not had a cold or flu for three years. I believe it's because I say all the time, and believe, that “no sickness and no disease can touch my body. I don't get sick. When any virus, cancer cells or bacteria touch my body, it dies the moment it comes in contact with me”.
Yet that doesn't mean I am going to not wash my hands or lick a grocery cart. It's like the preacher who professed that no evil could hurt him and then he picked up a venomous snake. He's dead now.
Faith filled with intelligence.
I want him to know, as I want you to know, that this time we have for Social Distancing is an OPPORTUNITY! Use these moments to read, discover, start something new, make goals, meditate, clean out your closet (literally and figuratively). Grow and expand your life. Write that book you always wanted to write. Practice your drawing. Write a poem. Start a Blog. Watch a comedian on t.v.. Watch my YouTube videos!
And please don't fear. If a negative thought comes into your head replace it immediately with something that will serve your life for good. I know you might think this is a shameless plug, but it is heartfelt- I do go over extensively how to break the habit of negative thinking in my book/workbook “Make Your Life a Masterpiece”. Not a bad thing to be doing while your social distancing.
I am going to continue watching in fascination how my son takes all of this in. And watch his emotions and how his heart will carry this as he moves forward with his life. Every moment and every distress can be times of great growth.
Remember this: You don't grow when you are comfortable.
The point is that you don't settle into that spot on the couch and get fat on Chocolate Fudge Brownie ice cream (Good luck finding it. I'm buying all of it). Instead grow, expand your life so you can be one that helps heal the world after this is all over.
The world is going to need you.
Make Your Life a Masterpiece,