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“It is not the most intellectual of the species that survives; it is not the strongest that survives; but the species that survives is the one that is able best to adapt and adjust to the changing environment in which it finds itself.” ― Leon C. Megginson

Leon Megginson was talking about business on the quote above but I think it fits in every area of life.  I am strong and intelligent but what will help me now is how quickly I adapt to my new normal.

I often say that I can adapt to anything, but at some moments I catch myself dragging my feet.  I realize I am going through the 5 stages of grief: denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance.  Sometimes I go through all the stages in the same day and in different orders.

I am grieving my normalcy, my routine.  I am mourning my freedom.  The freedom of coming and going without worry.

Denial: At first it didn’t seem real.  Up to 2 weeks ago I was still going to the office every day.  Still taking the train as if all is business as usual.  Pretending or perhaps just trying to believe that all was fine.  Then I realized that I was not doing my part to help contain this virus.  I decided that only people that need to go out should go out. So I stayed at home. Denial helps us handle things slowly and on our own terms.  

I wonder if being sane means disregarding the chaos that is life, pretending only an infinitesimal segment of it is reality.”― Rabih Alameddine

Anger: I am angry for the loss of my freedom.  My anger is directed towards our leaders that don’t know how to lead. Trump has done what he always does: make excuses, blame others and say how well he is doing.  Bolsanaro, the president of Brazil is even worst. Changing his mind at every second, yelling at reporters, blaming the media, calling this pandemic a hype.  It is hard to feel safe and secure when our leaders behave in such a way.

“How much more grievous are the consequences of anger than the causes of it.” ― Marcus Aurelius,  Meditations

Bargaining: I have been doing a lot of that.  Every night when I pray I ask God to let me be the one to get the virus instead of any of my family members.  I am volunteering that if anyone in my family is supposed to get this virus, please let it be me and not my parents and siblings. If my family escapes unscathed I promised to live more and worry less.  I will have more fun. I will live more.

“When you’re lost in those woods, it sometimes takes you a while to realize that you are lost. For the longest time, you can convince yourself that you’ve just wandered off the path, that you’ll find your way back to the trailhead any moment now. Then night falls again and again, and you still have no idea where you are, and it’s time to admit that you have bewildered yourself so far off the path that you don’t even know from which direction the sun rises anymore.”― Elizabeth Gilbert

Depression:  Some days I can see glimpses of depression.  Some days it is hard to see light at the end of the tunnel.  The feeling of powerlessness overwhelms me.  At those times is when I have to tap deep inside and turn to gratitude.  To me, gratitude is the antidote to depressive thoughts. I realize that the light I look for is not at the end of the tunnel or in some other abstract point in the future.  The light is inside of me and it is here now.  

“For after all, the best thing one can do when it is raining is let it rain.”
― Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Acceptance:  I accept the situation more than I rebel against it.  What is the alternative?  It is right here staring us in the face. Nowhere to hide, nowhere to escape.  Acceptance allows us to move on, to create new habits, to even find joy in our days. When we accept the situation we can start to see the future and to plan tomorrow.  I can accept but I don’t have to like it.

It is time to adapt, reflect, be patient and persevere.  I know I am blessed and have nothing to complain about.  But still, I remind myself that all my feelings are okay.  I don’t need to feel sorry or ashamed for feeling scared and defeated some days.  It is okay not to feel like a superwoman every day.  Some days I am just a frightened little girl, and that is okay.

For now I pray, I love, I say thank you. I am kinder and more patient.  For now I am trying to clean my house and my mind.  I am getting far from people (physically) and closer to God.

And this, too, shall pass.  And we will be stronger than ever!

“Your whole life is inside your mind.  Your mind is the prism that refracts the entire universe.  Everything around you and within you comes from your mind.  You are your state of mind.  Your state of mind creates your view, or your window, on life.”-  Frederick Lenz