Sunday, March 22, 2020
“Everyone” is writing, blogging, discussing, commenting, sharing about our vulnerable, brave new world during the #pandemic2020. Here is my personal experiece since the virus arrived in New Mexico.
On Thursday, March 12, 2020, the school director asked all staff to meet. We had learned during the week that the Covid-19 coronavirus had reached New Mexico and there were two confirmed cases in our state; by Thursday there were three. She explained to us that so far schools were still on schedule and we would be coming back on Monday, March 23 after Spring Break. There was uncertainty in the room as she explained the current situation from the school’s perspective. Teachers were whispering that school would surely be closed soon.
She explained that if anyone was leaving the state during the break, there was a strong probability they’d have to prove they were not carrying the virus upon return or spend 14-days in self-quarantine without pay (other than regular leave days accrued). Apparently, there had been a virtual meeting for all school administrators that afternoon with the Secretary of Education for NM at which contingencies were explained.
By the time I got home that day, school had been closed in all of the state’s schools for 3 weeks. The NM Secretary of Education with the Governor had “called it” by 6:00 pm on Thursday, March 12. “Schools in New Mexico are closed until April 6”.
Starting Friday, March 13, we knew that we were not going back to campus for at least three weeks. That’s where it stands at this point (3/22/20) although many believe schools will be cancelled for the rest of the semester and that we will be doing our best to offer online, virtual instruction to students until the end of the school year.
As the news sunk in, we realized we were in a new, vulnerable world. By the time I write this post, there are closer to 48 cases of the virus in NM. That’s over 2000% increase in one week. For a few days I was in shock and thought the sky was falling, the world was ending, we were done-for. Stock markets crashed several times over the span of several days. My investments have lost 15% of the original principal which apparently is better than the overall stock market that dropped 30%. I have to sit tight and wait until the economy improves. This could take months just like the crash in 1987. Patience and resilience is required.
After freaking out, I began searching for direction and perspective. There are quite a few podcasts and videos providing guidance on YouTube and Instagram at the moment. The majority of workers in the US are working from home now and are finding ways to be productive and of service. The teachers I’ve been following are meditation/mindfulness, new consciousness, and mind-body healing inspired. Most are nationally acclaimed and have an audience that now is seeking guidance.
Since I began watching these, my outlook has improved. I’m using my time productively. Creative projects, reading, writing, journalling, exercising and enjoying the example of nature’s resilience to inspire positivity. The birds and plants continue to follow their evolutionary process of getting ready for Spring. They don’t seem a bit affected by what we are dealing with and it helps to watch them day to day. I find strength in my daily long walks and jogs as well as walking my labyrinth and meditating. Something positive will come from this difficult chapter in our life.
Meanwhile, like the poem by Kitty O’Meara that I included in a previous post, after the danger passed, the people joined together and the planet began to heal.
May we be healthy;
May we be safe;
May we be happy;
May we find ease of mind.
Namaste – Amen