After traversing out into public the other day, I threw the suffocating face mask on the dash of my car and allowed the sunshine to beat down on it.
That mask haunts me. A visible symbol of fears real and imagined.
So, this morning I write.
The world on a massive move has stopped.
But my mind keeps going.
“Here you go, you’re going to stop and think,” Life says, slamming my mind into this brusque, new reality.
Suddenly – in an instant – I, we – have to look around and consider what has been done all along and the harsher lesson - why have we been doing it.
So here I am.
And the questioners are asking questions.
And the problem solvers are moving forward with action on their questions.
And those who like to abide and hide in the task at hand are hunkering into tasks more deeply than ever before.
And I am all these people.
Is there fear gripping each of us? I think so, even a tinge has reached the most hardened heart.
It’s hard to realize we can’t control this wheel – that the wheel can stop.
It’s hard to swallow when we haven’t really taken the time to assess our place on the wheel before it comes to an unnatural, screeching halt.
But I think, no I know, we have an incredible opportunity to take the time to actually think this time.
Yet I look around and still see insanity being the choice action of the day.
I look in the mirror.
There is a German phrase, Arbeit macht frei. Translated it is, “Work sets you free.” This phrase appeared on the entrance of Auschwitz, evilly playing on every last bit of hope. A dark promise, a guise of last resort, that there would be a task inside to give life a final semblance of meaning.
We should think now in this forced exercise, so serious it will be fatal for some of us.
Fatal for some of us.
Fatal for you?
Fatal for me?
Going out for groceries, to work, has turned into a serious game of Russian Roulette for all of us.
To mask or not to mask, the greatest question of this particularly, long hour.
This walk between life and death that has arrived at our doorstep should be abrupt enough to awaken us to strive for a better world shouldn’t it?
It should be.
Writing a string of words seems a way to soften the blow that maybe this isn’t a big enough deal to shake us to the core.
But maybe it is.
For some it will be.
I don’t have the answer, just thoughts, words, and a desperate call to action – please take the time to think with me. Maybe it will be less maddening if we really do that together.
Because maybe this time we can get it right, no more masks – tangible and intangible.
Use this forced prison to think about the life you really want and set yourself, free. I want that for all of us, for you, for me.
Because moving forward, those not thinking, even a belligerent few on both sides of the extreme, are the real disease.