It is time we rise
The heat swelled outside our windows. The sky expanded in a hue of blue reserved for the last breath of August and the meteorologists promised us today would be the last time we would feel the heat of this year.
2020 has given us plenty of heat. Plenty of reflection inward. An assortment of time to ask ourselves, “What the hell are we doing here?”
March bled into April. We sorted. We figured. We yearned for a return to what we called a ‘sense of normalcy’. Then we entered May, a new space of time that promised if we were vigilant, we would get through it too.
June looked us square in the eye, a silent lulling of the promise summer brings. Perhaps the warmer weather would bring us back to a sense of the familiar. But it jagged its way into July with another wave of unknowingness.
“You will see.” The year 2020 said to us.
So we looked. And saw August brought another level of intensity.
“You thought you were done?” The month toyed with our sensibilities. We inhaled. Stood still. Stood strong. Said, “Yes, we thought we might have a reprieve from it all.” And then it danced with our emotions, tangoed its way into our hearts and revealed a renewed thrust of challenge we did not foresee.
On the balcony, experiencing August’s final exhalation, I received WhatsApp messages from India. From a male nurse so committed to living the Power of Slow that he, in that moment of dismantling the passing life of my 92-year-old mother-in-law, insisted we must speak.
I gently suggested it was not a good time. That personal family matters called me to refrain from chatting. That what truly mattered was standing by my man’s side in a tender moment of departure from all that he had known all his life. I felt humbled by the nurse’s need. And for the feeling that we, around the world, are in this together.
The Indian nurse understood. And thanked me for listening. Thanked me for caring. And cried in relief that someone saw his pain. Despite my own, or perhaps because of it, I saw him. I heard him. I understand what it feels like to be on this Earth. Alone.
And yet we are not. We are all connected. No matter how far. No matter how near. You matter. I do too.
Love and compassion are the tools of our times. Let us use them to the best of our ability.
I have seen so much beauty in this life. It far outweighs the ugliness, which is a reflection of misunderstanding the meaning of our existence. May we dig deep and find the kindness and compassion that resides in every one of us. It is time we rise.