As of December 28, 2022, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that there have been 100,622,056 COVID-19 cases in the United States and 1,088,481 COVID-19 deaths to date. They are also reporting that higher rates of infection were among people of color.
This increase, experts are saying, was likely due to increased exposure due to working, living, and transportation situations. This included being more likely to work in jobs that cannot be done remotely, to live in larger households, and to rely on public transportation.
I am not a therapist. I have no medical degree. I am not here to assess your condition or dissect my own concerning the impact of what we have experienced, but I have determined, friend, that we need a minute.
We need a minute to allow ourselves to grieve what was a loss.
We need a minute to process what COVID-19 and its variants did to this country, to our community, and to our families.
We need a minute to understand the financial loss and the toll that COVID-19 had on our pocketbook. Not just ours, but the overall market, too.
Small businesses that were staples in the community closed their doors.
National chains took a hit.
Churches were impacted.
Families had to persevere through.
We need a moment to assess how to move forward; how to right the ship; how to re-engage; how to reconnect; how to revive and stand again. We need a moment to assess how we can be assured that going to the grocery store and being around people won’t kill us. We need a moment to shake the grave clothes off and come forth from the wreckage; from the pain; from the disappointment; from the uncertainty.
Yes, we have resumed some form of normalcy, but we are carrying some baggage that needs to be discarded. I realize that when the clock struck midnight December 31st, the “new year, new me” catchphrases took over for 2023, but friend, we still need a minute.
When the children of Israel got out of bondage, it was clear that the years of bondage had taken a toll. It took 40 years to get to an 11-day destination.
They had trust issues. We see that when crossing the Jordan with the Egyptians in pursuit their words were, “Did we not tell you in Egypt, ‘Leave us alone and let us serve the Egyptians’? It would have been better for us to serve the Egyptians than to die here.”
They had issues with leadership. We see that through their interaction with Moses and what led to his non-entry into the promised land.
They had issues inside their own home. A whole generation missed seeing the promised land with their own eyes. The opportunity we have now is a hindsight view of their journey to the promised land, that can help us avoid the same landmines.
We, too, have a place to get to that must not be delayed or drawn out to a 40-year journey.
Friends, we need a minute to gather ourselves and our families. We need a minute to grieve the loss and deal with the trauma, so hope can be infused into our “new year, new me” 2023 beginning.
So go and take your minute or minutes. Be intentional about it. Take a deep breath. Love on yourself. Get a massage. Journal. See a therapist. Go sit down somewhere as the old folks would say and honey…. breathe. Talk it out with those you trust. Release the pressure of what you and your family had to endure. It happened. It is done. Yes, you wish things were different, but it will not be. Go and post up on a beach somewhere and process the impact of what has happened. There is something about crashing waves rolling that at times can ease anxiety. Some of us need to get back to the church house. Some of us need to surround ourselves with laughter. Go take your minute or minutes friend and…. breathe.
Sharwin Wiltz-Boney is an entrepreneur, business consultant/coach, speaker and author who currently serves as President and CEO of a financial infrastructure management company that has operated in the Houston area for more than a decade. Utilizing the experience she has gained through business ventures and her very own life journey, Sharwin invites you into her Musings. Have a comment? Drop her a line at firstname.lastname@example.org