2020 has already been a year that will go down in history, and it’s not even half over. We all would have laughed if we had been told on January 1st that we would soon see empty shelves at nearly every grocery store, news articles about people hoarding toilet paper, or a worldwide shortage of hand sanitizer, disposable gloves, N95 masks, and disinfectant spray.
Being unemployed for two months was not on my husband’s radar, nor did we expect to witness the government send billions of dollars through the mail to private citizens. When I offered to help my brother-in-law find a deep freezer, I was prepared to research the best brand and model, not to be told that there were literally none available on the market and likely would not be for months. And so much worse than all the inconveniences that our society has faced are the deaths that have resulted. While I only know of two friends who have tested positive for COVID-19, my heart break for those who have lost loved ones.
Here in Nashville, residents were still dealing with the fallout from the March 3rd tornado when the Coronavirus shutdown hit. Our city’s economy is fueled by the entertainment and health care industries, both of which are experiencing major setbacks. Two credible sources told us that one of the area’s leading hospitals is facing financial stress due to elective surgery cancellations, and no one knows how many months will pass before large concerts and conventions will resume.
But in the midst of all the upheaval, uncertainty, and heartbreak, there is still beauty to be found. I have especially enjoyed the extra time that I have been able to spend with my family, the opportunity to have long telephone or video conversations with friends and other loved ones, and the chance to work through house projects. It’s encouraging to see others getting out and enjoying nature, while still social distancing. Some of the smaller parks have been closed, but those with ample field space and wide trails have remained open.
So that brings me to my next discussion question: What beauty have you found in quarantine? What new things have you done? How has your routine changed for the better?
We can all list the things we miss and are eager to get back, but let’s take a moment to focus on the positive.