I made a confession to some friends a few weeks ago, not sure what kind of a response I’d get. “Quarantine honestly hasn’t changed my life that much,” I admitted. “As an introvert, it’s really not that hard.” I meant it.
One of them, a fellow introvert, smiled in response. “I feel the same way.”
A more extroverted friend shared that she didn’t feel especially restricted, either. She’d been embracing her introverted side over the past few months and was enjoying a break from all the busyness.
I think most of us felt a weight lift off our shoulders, if even a small one, with these confessions.
I began to think about all the complaints I’ve heard about this season. Many of these complaints are legitimate, and I get that. Some people have actual crises – they’ve lost jobs or lost loved ones. Some have had severe health issues. Many elderly folks haven’t been able to see their family members in months and are very lonely. Businesses have been forced to shutter because they can’t make ends meet.
But I honestly believe the media is fueling a lot of emotions in society that wouldn’t otherwise be present. People watch the news and panic. They scroll social media, read others’ complaints, and think, They’re right! This is really tough! My life is hard!…even if it really isn’t. We are bombarded with horror stories on Facebook, YouTube, and about every TV station in existence. Fear and a poverty mindset are EVERYWHERE.
Here’s my honest take: although I dislike all the restrictions, my life has remained quite unaffected. I don’t mind staying home. I kind of like it. I don’t get surprise visitors. I order groceries online. I don’t feel pressured to attend social events, because there aren’t many of them. I utilize drive-thrus and rarely eat out because I don’t like wearing a mask. I’ve still been able to go to church once a week for most of the year, and the only difference is there’s no greeting time, which is a dream come true! I did lose my job several months ago, but it gave me the opportunity to go back to school instead, which I never would have considered pre-2020 but completely love. I’m living on my savings for now and of course it’d be nice to still have the security of a weekly paycheck, but I’m blessed to have any savings at all. God always provides!
I really don’t have anything to complain about. I wish this virus would disappear once and for all, but I don’t feel like this is the worst year in the history of the world. My grandparents lived through much worse in the Depression era. (I don’t see anyone in my generation reusing their bread bags just yet! 😉) And COVID will never compare to the horrors of the Holocaust. It would be selfish to even entertain that idea.
I think we need to start telling fear where to go and open our eyes to the blessings we still have. What better time to do that than Thanksgiving? Yes, I understand that this year may have brought unwanted or unexpected changes. I’m right there with you. But there is still so much to be thankful for!
Here are a few things I can be thankful for this year despite everything going on:
Oh, and so far, I haven’t run out of toilet paper. 😉
What are you thankful for this year? How has this year affected your life for the better?