Remember the past, imagine the future
It’s incredible how the brain works. Lived experiences, no matter now far back in life, are generally stored away carefully, to be recalled when necessity strikes. When one needs to adjust to profound change.
Growing up in East Africa, I was quite used to standing in line for groceries. Basic essentials were rationed and distributed sparingly, and many were just not available. However, this was done for very different reasons than the situation we’re in now. Those rations and incessant line-ups were due to economic reasons. For a few years, there were food shortages because the country just couldn’t afford to buy things, not because social distancing was required due to a nasty virus that stopped us in our tracks.
I find it interesting that this trying time when we must limit grocery shopping, stay indoors and make do with whatever we have, has brought me back very efficiently to my life as a child. It was not that hard a switch to “stretch” foods, dish out dinners to make sure everyone had a good helping, use rare spices and condiments sparingly, and yet find a way to balance meals.
Human resilience is a remarkable thing — it’s the ability to cope and adjust in times of change and in times of adversity! Change affects people differently, bringing a unique stream of thoughts, powerful emotions and an innate desire to thrive. Some may feel anxious, others energized. Still, people generally adapt well over time to life-changing and stressful situations — in part thanks to resilience. Resilience is about coping.
It’s heartening to see people adapt — engaging in meaningful, useful activities, spending quality time with their children, learning new things, focusing on long-lost hobbies. I think most children are enjoying this unexpected time spent on them by doting parents!
Let’s hope and pray that our farmers, manufacturers, truckers, and others who work valiantly to supply us with sustenance, may be able to continue their work, so that we never have to face the kinds of shortages, rations and queues that my family had to endure growing up.
We shall overcome! Let’s stay the course and do our part, thinking and behaving differently. Better. Kinder. Happier. Being positive, and planning for a better life ahead!
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