Well, my dad passed away a year ago now and the pandemic is still dragging on. I'm pretty much fed up. I'm sick of the negativity from so many people. I'm tired of seeing businesses fold. I've had it with people arguing over whether the pandemic is some kind of conspiracy and the vaccine is going to alter our DNA to change us into zombies. Here's a tip for all you conspiracy believers. If you've spent any time around the federal government, I assure you there is no part of it competent enough to pull off a sham of this magnitude. Trust me on this one.
Anyway, I'm writing this post as much for myself as for anyone else who needs to hear it. I'm going to find five positive things about the past year.
1. I've spent more time with my wife and kids over the past year that probably the last three combined. We eat almost every lunch and dinner together. We've camped, watched movies, played board games, to the point that we're avoiding each other now. With my oldest (hopefully) completing his senior year of high school this has been a positive thing. Even if he spends a lot of time hiding in his bedroom, we've done a bunch of home improvement projects together in the past 12 months.
2. Something I knew all along has been proven and that is that my wife and I can easily do our jobs from home. It's stressful at times, but we have not suffered financially at all over the past year because we both have jobs that just require a laptop and and an internet connection. On the days when the kids are in school, we have the house to ourselves. We talk a lot more than we used to, help each other when we're stuck on a problem, and eat lunch together every day.
3. The environment has benefitted from everyone staying home. The air is cleaner and the number of traffic accidents has decreased considerably. Personally, I've put very few miles on my vehicles over the past year and have saved a lot of money in gas and maintenance.
4. I think everyone has a much greater respect and admiration for people working in the health care industry and everyone working in jobs that traditionally are low-paying but it turns out are absolutely essential to the rest of us being able to stay home. I'm talking about people working at grocery stores, the big box stores selling essential items like toilet paper, and the people that make and distribute these items. Without someone going to a factory to make these things, the warehouse people to distribute them, and the truck drivers delivering them we would all be in a lot of trouble. Admit it, you probably looked into installing a bidet last year too.
5. Finally, I think everyone has a much greater appreciation for all those times we could gather in huge groups for parties, concerts, festivals, or whatever. I was never a big concert goer but I miss getting together with other people. This is starting to come back and I'm looking forward to it. I'm still not in any hurry to go sit in my cubicle five days a week, but I expect the time will come before I'm ready.
Well, I feel a little better after this and I hope you do too. In fact I'll just add a couple more bonus positivity. First, I really never cared for shaking people's hands so I'm glad that's gone. I think it should be gone for good. I have seen way too many people leave public restrooms without washing their hands. Second, I'm working on a new website which involves learning a new skill because I know absolutely nothing about Wordpress. But I enjoy learning new things.
Among all of the political fighting and pandemic fatigue, I hope this helps someone feel a little happier. That's our way out of all of this. Just be nice to each other and do something, no matter how small, to make someone else happy.
Copyright Dave Lubke and www.davelubke.com, 2022
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