Yesterday I needed to hear some voices of hope, so I listened to Michelle Obama’s new podcast with President Barack Obama. They talked about how they were raised during the “it takes a village” mindset when everyone watched out for everyone else’s kids and we all had each other’s backs. They suggested that this is a worthy paradigm to help our country get back on its feet and move forward again. Examples discussed included all of us wearing masks to help end this pandemic, and everyone casting their votes for the next administration.
Listening to the Obamas got me thinking about what else gives me hope during this pandemic; the amazing bravery of the essential workers on our front lines day in and day out who are saving lives, those working to provide our essential needs, and those keeping us safe. I am encouraged by the peaceful protestors affecting change in the Black Lives Matter movement, including the artists creating beautiful murals, street, and sidewalk creations I’ve seen on my pandemic walks. Tybre Faw, the little boy who read the poem, “Invictus” at the late congressman, John Lewis’s memorial was a memorable moment for me that inspires courage in the face of the fight against bigotry. And while I was sad for our country’s loss, and the loss of so many milestones for our youth as a result of Coronavirus – including proms and graduations, I am in awe of how our young people acclimated to on-line and bubble environments during the shelter-in-place mandate. I see hope in the strength and perseverance of this generation of children who have endured so much change and loss.
Today I was cleaning my kitchen and chuckled when I looked up at the window and a 2019 calendar was taped there. Each year I put our holiday cards up on the windows that frame our kitchen table. I would have normally taken them down by now, but when the pandemic hit, I decided to leave them up and missed the old calendar. I like that the cards with photos of my extended family and friends are “with us” at the kitchen table each day. I am reminded of what the Obamas discussed; I’ve got a wonderful support system of family and friends that have my back. And while 2019 is long since past, I remain steadfast and hopeful for happier times ahead.