At my core, I’m a journalist. As a journalist, I have the great privilege and weighty responsibility to bear witness to and make sense of news events in our community and in our nation. Journalists, it’s been said, write the first draft of history. Given the fast paced and anxiety producing events of the past few days, I think we could be nearing an inflection point in our history. It’s entirely possible that some day, we’ll remember a “pre-Covid” and a “post-Covid” culture.
While many of us are marinating in collective anxiety over a deadly virus that has prompted so much upheaval world-wide, I’ve been trying to wrap my head around what’s happened and what’s to come, given all the information coming our way. I was on the air this week talking to a Minnesota Health Department official about the virus when I felt my shoulders up around my ears. My whole body felt like it was braced for impact. Journalists do tend to feel like that on a daily basis, but this time, it dawned on me that my body was sending a message. Of all the times, this is not a time to live in my head, but rather I need to live from my heart.
The journalist in me knows a crisis like this may bring great suffering. Another part of me that founded a non-profit like End in Mind Project knows this crisis is also a chance to create connection and community. This “inflection point” will offer each of us an opportunity to better care for ourselves and each other in ways we would have never imagined if we allow for those possibilities.
So, I urge you to keep informed. Stay calm. Sequester yourself if need be, but don’t put your heart in quarantine and for goodness sakes…WASH YOUR HANDS!!
**Photos from AP, Getty Images