Here in South Carolina, stores and restaurants are opening back up. If you drive the same routes you used to drive, you can pretend for just a minute that it is “back to normal.” There are many places and people not requiring masks and social distancing guidelines are proving difficult to enforce when there are small spaces and so many people who are ready to be back in the world again.
Even as much as I want to be “back to normal,” there is a whispering within me that suspects we won’t go back. Life never really does go backwards does it? It pushes us forward into new experiences and new normals again and again.
I hear this a lot from people who are grieving. It’s the waking up to the new normal without a loved one, without a job, without a marriage that is the most difficult. It’s the waking up to the new normal that causes you to confront what you have lost.
We are grieving after a traumatic experience. We are wanting and wishing to find equilibrium because we as a people always seek balance and predictability. If you find yourself trying to get “back to normal” only to be confronted with the reality that there is nothing normal right now, you are not alone. We are all trying to adapt and adjust to living with a virus strand that caused a global pandemic.
As much as we want to get “back to normal,” let us work together to create a new normal where we can live and work together without endangering each other of the people we love.