As we celebrate these end-of-year holidays, for some people, it is a time of loneliness. With Covid-19 still rampaging through the world, and social restrictions in place to try and slow down the outbreaks, we are physically farther apart than we’ve ever been in recent history. It is easy to allow ourselves to feel lonely and alone.
Rather than let this extraordinary time get us down, it’s time to engage our energies and creativity toward figuring out ways to stay connected. Since last March, when the first restrictions were instituted, we’ve seen a lot of creativity focused toward what we could do:
• An Italian tenor singing from his balcony, entertaining the neighbors while keeping his voice in shape;
• String quartets and wind quintets playing from porches and front yards, at proper social distances, playing to the birds and the trees;
• Walking outside, masked up, keeping connected with those close to us;
• Families “visiting” older relatives through windows, with balloons and posters, maintaining those closest of connections.
Since the summer, we’ve seen arts organizations figuring out how to provide plays, concerts and operas through the internet. Video chat services have grown through the roof, as we connected through our computers and smartphones. Choirs that cannot sing together because they are super-spreaders have become virtual with the aid of brilliant editors with fantastic software.
The human mind is incredibly creative, as we’ve seen us work around restrictions in order to keep our worlds spinning. This same creativity needs to be focused on maintaining our connections, through whatever means possible and safe. We are going to be in this situation for a while longer. Getting through it and past the other side is a goal we want to set for ourselves and our loved ones, while we wait for other evidence of human creativity – efficacious vaccines – to be available.
Include keeping meaningful connection in your dreaming for the new year, and beyond. These rich connections add immeasurably to who we are and what we do, reinforcing our purpose far beyond ourselves.