There are days that I awake feeling as though things make sense now in a way that they’ve never before. The slow pace, the perspective, and the sifting out of useless junk that quarantine has allowed are gifts to behold.
Other days I writhe with anxiety and a sadness that isn’t FOMO, because nothing fun is going on. I guess it’s a kind of grief, if I have to put a word to it. Though in reality, it isn’t grief. I don’t actually know that there is a perfect word for it. It’s an uncomfortable purgatory of sorts, whilst we decide as a collective which path we’ll take next.
We’ve found ourselves at a crossroads: a necessary shaking of the snowglobe and opportunity for a rethink from the very obvious string of poor choices we have made. The power-hungry corporations and corrupt governments that have decimated the planet and widened the poverty gap. The brainwashing and beliefs that the individual has no power. Or worse, that every person placed on the pedestal at the front of the nation is credible. Worthy. They stand therefore they must have been touched by God. Only, that couldn’t be further from the truth. No man is without his flaws. No one exempt from poor decisions that must be admitted and corrected with humility and grace.
It’s not about perfection, for none of us embody such an elusive trait. Rather, it’s about trial and error, hard work, a dose of lightheartedness and above all else: thinking with the collective in mind. Not just your family. Not even your country. Not even all the other Homo sapiens on the planet. But the complex, interwoven, delicate architecture that dictates how many years we’ve got left on Earth before it’s declared a dead zone. After all, as the saying goes: we do not inherit the earth from our ancestors; we borrow it from our children.
I’m realising the importance of playtime with friends. Of dancefloors packed with conscious, considerate humans. Of people-watching from my favourite cafe. Of xeno: those fleeting exchanges between strangers that are random, but powerful and alleviate any feelings of loneliness.
I’m thinking more each day of the allure of being at least somewhat self-sufficient. Whether that’s how I procure my energy or how I get delicious, nutritious food onto my table.
I’m becoming more aware of the humanistic need for physical touch, communication through body language and facial expression and the ways we bond through shared sound, scent and taste.
I’m reminded that the sense of community is always there. Sometimes it gets smothered underneath tales of darkness, fed to us in one very specific narrative that thrives off of fear and hopelessness amongst the masses. But most people – like, almost all of the people on this planet – are wonderful and want exactly the same things as each other: to survive and thrive.
We’re all on different journeys as we continue to quarantine so that we can protect our loved ones and society at large. And amongst even my most level-headed peers there are moments of uncertainty, fear and doubt about what looms over yonder on a horizon that fluctuates between blindingly bright and stygian as the night.
Know that the oscillations are normal; you’re an anomaly if you have been without a dull, dark day throughout all of this. But you can hold space for a future that’s better and I encourage you to spend at least a small portion of your time envisioning this.
What do you want to see for yourself and others? What kind of beautiful, brighter things that seem unimaginable in this current paradigm? National healthcare in America? No child going hungry? The use of psychadelics for healing, without stigma? A reverse on climate change and ocean acidifcation? The preservation of wildlife and collapsed fish stocks? No taboo for discussing mental health? Think big and embellish these ideals with as many details as you can. You have nothing to lose in doing so; only an abundance to gain.
I can’t tell you what tomorrow will look like, let alone next week. But I can tell you what I want to see for us all and I’m cementing it down in my mind’s eye. I hope you are too.