Dec 152020

Let me start off by saying that I am almost always a rule follower, to the point where it’s boring and prudish but I have also been taking all of the punishments meant for those who break the rules. And it’s a miserable life to lead. Not necessarily live because lately, do you really feel like you’re living?

2020 has been a year unlike any other and while we keep being told to hold onto hope and wait it out there seems to be no real end in sight. I’ve stayed quiet, isolated, didn’t get groceries for months when this all started and basically stayed inside my house to protect myself and others. I’ve donned masks when the verdict was out on those (it really still is) and followed the arrows in the stores even though I really just needed one thing and could have been out quickly and easily.

I’ve stayed quiet. I tend not to voice controversial opinions any more though I still want to be educated, I just don’t want to be called an idiot for questioning something. I want to connect, to debate politely, to reach out to people, to be able to understand theories and opinions and maybe change my own but not to be told I’m a conspiracy theorist or lose friends in the process.

Please understand that I am not taking a definitive side on what I’ll call, for the sake of this post, Cona, as we all know what I’m referring to but it won’t get flagged as easily as using the full word. I am fortunate enough to not have anyone I know directly impacted by Cona though I don’t believe it’s non-existent. I do feel we should no longer live huddled in fear waiting for it to find us and this is why….

And this may be an unpopular opinion but I feel it will make sense to everyone, or most.

People are dying of other things, too.

It’s sad, it is. What makes it so much worse is many people are dying alone for fear of getting or passing along Cona. People die daily of many things including old age, cancer, being hit by a car and we’re all just standing by trusting they know they were loved while we stay in our house and hope we don’t get Cona or, worse, give it.

When we gain some freedom and try to enjoy ourselves, we get ridiculed and judged because we’re doing something that isn’t essential. But what you consider essential, in staying home, reading a book, eating a salad and pretending you’re ok seeing faces through a screen, others may need to get out of their abusive home, see more than their four walls closing in around them, to breath fresh air where they can laugh and smile and, with washed hands, have someone serve them a decent meal.

I wrote a book titled Being Grateful, Being Thankful: Appreciate Everything For Even the Rain Brings Rainbows but if the trails are shut down, if we’re told to wear a mask while we run outside and stay away from those we love we will never enjoy the brilliance of the rain or the rainbow.

This post is certainly not a cry to the masses to revolt or go against what is believed but a post out of exhaustion, desperation and love meant to inspire you to reconsider what is essential and hopefully find a way to enjoy your day without judgement or ridicule from others.

This Christmas as we all try to create new traditions and enjoy the family and friends who are “in our bubble” I am more skeptical by the minute because I have aging family and the idea of holding on until this is over so that “everyone can finally gather” seems more ridiculous by the moment. If everyone is here right now and our lives are RIGHT NOW shouldn’t we be LIVING RIGHT NOW!

We’re told to live for the moment while 2020 has been trying to shift our moment to the future… we can’t live for the future as we never really know when or if that will come. I have lost too many people far too soon and it breaks my heart the idea that they would have died alone if they lived for 2020. So while we are told to live for 2021, the wonderful cure that has even experts worry, people are leaving us and we are sitting at home shedding tears but safe.

But don’t go bungee jumping either as the cord may break mid blissful moment.

Thanks for reading and living,

Sarah Butland

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