I personally went down the panic trail on Wednesday. I developed a fever and cough, and that little voice inside my head started screaming, "The end is nigh!" (What can I say? I'm a writer. We tend to be a bit dramatic). Fortunately, my rock solid husband was there to simmer my ass down. I'm already starting to feel better, and my fever is gone.
It got me thinking about our society, though. I'm a sociology professor, and I teach courses on how a crisis brings out both the good and bad in humanity. We've all been hearing the bad stories...the toilet paper wars, politicians blaming each other, and even some racist comments thrown at Asian Americans. Ugh!
But there's plenty of good out there as well. Here's a sampling:
- The mayor of Cleveland turned the heat and water back on for all residents who were in arrears. That way folks could stay warm and wash their hands.
- With the schools closed, many kids were going without food. Volunteers united along with the local food banks to provide meals on a daily basis at our closed public libraries.
- A group in my neighborhood went around and left a note on every single door offering to run errands for folks who can't get out.
- My husband's company just gave every employee 10 extra days of PTO so they could be home with their kids without having to worry about getting paid.
- I was out walking my dog and passed a house that had a stand offering free toilet paper, paper towels, hand sani, canned goods, etc. You could just help yourself, and many were pulling up in their cars. Some were taking stuff, but others were adding to the pile.
- Did you see the video in Italy of all the residents opening their windows and singing together? I cried.
That is the best of humanity, and we've proven we can do it before. I remember when 9/11 happened and the world pulled together and helped each other. My folks told me stories about World War II and how they did the same back then. The point is, we can get through this. We just need to stay positive and help each other out whenever we can.
Would love to hear positive stories from your own neck of the woods. Please leave a comment. Then go wash your hands. LOL.