This post is in no way intended to minimize the emotional suffering, physical pain, and debilitating financial loss that so many have experienced during the ongoing months of the COVID-19 pandemic. It is simply meant as a lighthearted look – from the perspective of a suburbanite who has retained her income and health insurance – at what could be viewed as random perks of the pandemic derived from even the most relentless and unimaginable foe.
A Community Perspective
- We are outdoors more so we are connecting with our neighbors at deeper and less superficial levels than we had time for prior to COVID-19 – even though we must remain six feet apart.
- We have more opportunity to develop a sense of deeper empathy and support for our local small businesses – and increase our support of independent bookstores, takeout orders (when restrictions are lifted) from small restaurants, and excitement over the appearance of food trucks in our neighborhoods.
- When we must see a doctor or have another professional appointment, we are no longer required to wait, are shown right into the required space, and shuffled out as quickly and efficiently as we had always dreamed.
The View from Home
- There is plenty of time for home improvement and garden projects, as well as the opportunity to eliminate our “to do” lists.
- We have lower vehicle maintenance, entertainment, and grocery costs – as we have less opportunities to go out or to find what we are looking for on grocery shelves.
- We are able to appreciate less screen time and increased quality family time. We are becoming creative in ways to enjoy one another’s company.
- There are no longer solicitors knocking on our doors or ringing our doorbells pitching whatever they may be selling.
An Individual Perspective
- We abandon all sense of vanity and de-emphasize appearance. Nothing looks good with a mask and people six feet away cannot see us as well and do not notice stray – or grey—hairs, lack of makeup, or disheveled clothing.
- If we are not working from home, we can abandon the constraints of an alarm clock and go to bed when we are tired, awaken when we are refreshed, and remain in comfortable attire.
- We have an abundance of time for reading, writing, exercise, and exploring new hobbies.
- We are on no schedule, are in no rush, and enjoy less stress – which ends itself to a heightened appreciation of and gratitude for everything we still do have in our life.
These are just a few of the most important perks of the pandemic from my perspective. It appears that we are in this for the long haul. I would love to hear your ideas on how you are are creatively handling your days while maintaining a positive attitude to this ongoing challenge. In the meantime, stay strong, healthy, and respectful of one another.