So, no. We’re not going back to life as it was. That is a given. It’s also not a bad thing. Life, as it was before, wasn’t sustainable. It wasn’t normal. It was out of control. One of the reasons these restrictions hit us as hard as they did is because we were living life at such a fast pace that we never had time to slow down, regroup, and just sit with our feelings. Even if we were dealing with depression, anxiety, relationship issues, or other problems before, we could ignore them as long as we kept the bullet train known as life going. In 2020 that train came to a screeching halt. Not only did it come to a screeching halt, but it took all our baggage and dumped it on our doorstep.
We could no longer ignore it as we had nowhere to go. There it was in the house with us, screaming to be opened and finally dealt with. Many of us did what we’d always done. Avoid it. Unable to outrun it, we numbed ourselves. A drink here and there just so we could forget for a minute that we were sad, lonely, anxious, hurt. Except now all those feelings were sitting on the couch with us and avoiding them kept getting harder. So, we’d have another drink or two. Our lives weren’t normal or sustainable before. Now, the way we’re dealing with them isn’t normal or sustainable either.
When that train came to a screeching halt for us, many of us had just a carry-on bag with us. Which should make things easier to sort out. I hope we would never go back to what is considered normal. Even in the midst of what has been the most turbulent time globally, I’ve been able to find joy, to find peace and to feel alive. There is hope ahead. That hope is in the fact that we aren’t going back to normal. We’re going to go forward to something better. People will struggle, but ultimately they will also find such amazing freedom. Freedom from numbing. Freedom from addiction. Freedom from the burden of carrying around the heavy emotions, the shame, the guilt, the loneliness, and the isolation. We’re never going back to normal again because we deserve better. We deserve more. We deserve freedom, happiness, and a chance to hit pause anytime we need to.