I’m feeling a bit unsettled as we ease out of pandemic-related restrictions. All of a sudden it seems my work and social calendar are filling up with in-person meetings and meals with friends, colleagues, and clients. With more people fully vaccinated (including me), I’m cautiously excited about having a busier schedule with more than just Zoom meetings.
Who could have imagined the many mundane things we took for granted before the pandemic? Activities like being together to share birthdays, graduations, weddings, anniversaries, and memorial services … attending concerts, plays, sporting events, museums, and conferences … planned and impromptu get-togethers for coffee or lunch or dinner … handshakes and hugs (especially hugs!).
“A crisis can be very clarifying. When you have emerged from a crisis you learn to cherish what really matters.” Scott Cochrane
While we’re fortunate in the U.S. to say “Good riddance!” to the worst of the pandemic, I find there are some aspects of the past 15 months that I’ll actually miss. Here are a few of them (in no particular order):
- a renewed sense of respect for front line and essential workers like grocery/convenience store/drugstore clerks; healthcare professionals; delivery and truck drivers; etc.
- a greater appreciation for nature’s restorative benefits
- people proactively reaching out to connect with others near and far to check on their wellbeing
- self-acceptance that it’s ok to say you’re not ok
- increased awareness of the importance of mental health — the impact of anxiety, depression, and other mental health issues that emerged and/or deepened during the pandemic, along with the need to de-stigmatize them.
I sincerely hope these will not disappear during and after our recovery.
What about you? What part of pandemic life will you miss?