First of all, I start this post by defining a term: In order to deflate the power attached to the current virus that has such a hold on our lives and decisions, I have renamed it. I call it co-conuts. Clearly, co-conuts has become too much of a focus in our lives of late and it is damaging in so many ways that we aren’t talking about.
I’ve noticed lately, for example, that I’ve become pretty rooted in my home. Obviously, a lot of that has to do with co-coconuts. It shouldn’t be a surprise that I have grown roots: In many places, for a year now, we’ve been told not to be with our friends and loved ones. That’s a long frickin’ time. (My son is about to turn 22. Yesterday he commented that this will be his second birthday in lock-down. What?)
For my son and so many of us, I’m concerned about the mental, emotional and relationship habits that we are developing as a result of being so disconnected from each other. It goes against human nature. Even those of us who have introvert tendencies need to experience human touch, to be with those we love, and to share connection and laughter. Yet, we are learning how to live as lone wolves.
And this is what worries me: The other day I realized that when this is over, it will be hard for me to leave my home. I shared this comment with a friend during an elicit drive-way visit in sub-zero weather in which she gave me a plant she had bought for me and had been nurturing for over a month. I was and wasn’t surprised when she told me she felt the same way – that being with people when we are finally “free” would involve too much effort. The implications of this “trend of two” that I predict goes much further than the two of us is alarming.
And as lone wolves, we’re making a mess of it. Look at what has happened in the world since we have been cut off from each other. We see increases in irrational fear and extreme measures that are disproportionate to the risks we face. We are pitting ourselves against each other. We see childish name-calling and cowardly strikes from the safety of a keyboard. We see evidence of lost compassion, loss of empathy, loss of patience, increased polarity, increased violence. We are losing our humanity.
I am not prepared to lose mine. I pledge to plug back in to compassion. To love my neighbour as myself. To reconnect with people and the Divine in a deeper and more meaningful way. To lead with courage. To encourage others to move past fear and to focus on hope. To create a world I want to live in rather than allow our world to cave in on itself.
Strength comes from numbers and I hope you will join me on the journey. Reach out to the people you love in a more intentional way, even through your screens if that’s all you are able to do right now. And when the doors open where you live, walk through them straight into the arms of those you love, and promise to love them better. Pull up your roots so you can re-establish the love connections. Really be with each other. Lather, rinse and repeat until you have created a new habit with everyone you know.
We can’t let co-conuts take us down.