Has the bell rung yet?
Things are still kind of wonky.
In my relentlessly optimistic mind, I really thought we’d find a semblance of “normal” by now, but not so much.
And then I realized why things are so strange:
The pandemic hasn’t disappeared as fast as it appeared in our experience.
And without an abrupt ending to an abrupt beginning, we’ve been left without closure.
As my Grandpa John would say, “Oi, oi, oi.”
Remember in school when the bell would ring? Bells told us when classes started, classes were over, and that our incarceration was done for the day. Watch any old movie and see kids fleeing the building as soon as the final bell rang. And, no, we weren’t running from a shooter, we were just ecstatic to be free!
But there are no bells with COVID-19. Well, actually, there was ONE BIG BELL on March 13, 2020, that sent us home without a plan. “Just go home and wait…”
But no final bell. No indicator or sign that it’s safe to come out now. It’s no wonder why we are all still acting so skittish. We were trained to stay in, not go out.
So if we really need closure, how do we get that when the pandemic still exists? How do we define a new normal?
We just start from where we are right now. Today. At this very moment. And keep creating from there.
And in the meantime, we perfectly polish our ability to practice patience.
The lesson (discipline) in a post-pandemic world is patience.
Develop patience for new experiences; patience for time to create them; patience for the results; and best of all, patience for what needs to be learned for these choices to take root.
Speaking of learning, wasn’t that the final bell I just heard coming from the School of Frustration & Overthinking? Yes, I believe it was!
Good. Now we can start packing our backpacks and get ready for our first day at the School of Curiosity and Inspiration—the school of our new normal.
Have a great day at school! And don’t trade your lunch for any game tokens.
Michael Thomas Sunnarborg
Image: Bemidji High School, circa 1984