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Silver linings in self-isolation

Silver linings in self-isolation Silver linings in self-isolation

I found myself home early on Monday, back in my comfy apartment by 5:30 p.m. It was strange, home on a Monday before dark. Typically Mondays and Tuesdays are late nights as I cover meetings and games.

Those have all but disappeared in the face of the coronavirus. It seems strange to walk outside, see the sun shining and hear birds chirping while in newspapers and on the television all we see is the discordant chaos of COVID-19.

In our little corner of the world spring is slowly staying longer and longer. Snow has slowly given way to rain. The robins are everywhere, and the trees are showing the first hint of buds that signify the spreading of leaves.

It’s strange to stop and realize we are in the midst of a global pandemic even as the rest of the world teems with life and renews itself for the onset of summer.

But we can see the effect of COVID-19 wherever we go. It’s in the empty stadiums and empty streets. It’s in people saying “I love you” six feet apart from each other, or celebrating virtual birthdays with friends online.

Others feel that all this emptiness signifies the end of the world, or some other dire scenario in which our lives will never reach a semblance of normalcy.

I understand those sentiments completely, and I admit I have had my own crisis of faith in dealing with this latest biological threat to humanity. However, as I stop and assess the situation, the emptiness isn’t as terrifying as it may seem at first blush.

When you go out and see the empty streets and empty schools and stadiums don’t say “This looks like the end of the world.” In fact, you’re seeing something completely different.

What you’re seeing is love in action. You’re seeing people showing how much they care for each other. They’re self-isolating themselves to protect the people and communities they love.

Self-isolation is powerful and positive when you think of it like that. It shows that rather than humanity at its worst, people are showing their strength and unity and doing what it takes to help one another.

I’ve had a chance to see a small measure of that for myself while speaking with students from Colby and Abbotsford. They’re young and scared and sad, especially the seniors who think of what they’re missing out - the chance to say goodbye to friends and family, enjoy one last dance, one last performance or one last game.

They’re sad and frustrated at the loss of prom, possibly graduation and their athletic careers. But they shoulder their losses and understand it.

The Class of 2020 has shown incredible strength and resiliency in the face of something massive and greater than themselves. Knowing that in 20-25 years these same men and women will be the face and force guiding this country, I’m not afraid of the future.