Things I Never Thought I’d See
I never thought I’d see the day come when I had to get to the local Walmart at 7 a.m. with the hope that I’d find toilet paper on the shelf. It happened today. I didn’t need toilet paper. But that’s another thing I thought I’d never see or do. Know exactly how many rolls of toilet paper I have on hand at any given time. I also never thought I’d ration the tissue squares to three at a time every time I peed.
Even though I didn’t need toilet paper, (I have eight rolls on hand) for the past two days I’ve woken each morning with one thought in my head: Get up. Go to Publix or Walmart. See if they have toilet paper. Buy some.
DO IT NOW!
I resisted that little voice because I’ve tried to refuse to let this pandemic change my way of life any more than it already has. I don’t want to give it that power. But it isn’t easy for me or for any of us. Inside, that anxious voice whispers what we’re all afraid might be the truth. We’ll run out of toilet paper first. Then food. Then money. We can’t go near our friends or neighbors. Some of them are arming themselves. We’re going to starve. We’re going to get infected.
WE’RE ALL GOING TO DIE!
Who among us hasn’t wondered if this is THE END? Or is it just my writerly overly active imagination that can envision such a scenario? I hope so. Because creating conspiracy theories and combining it with my excessively skeptical nature makes me think what a great book I could write drawing from the components that have shaped this pandemic thus far. Unlike my romance novels, I’m not sure this one will have a happy ending.
I’ve delayed blogging about this because I didn’t think I had anything new to add to the conversation, and maybe I don’t.
No one likes change, but sometimes change is needed. A crisis is good for creating change. How do you know how strong you are, how strong anything is, if it’s never been tested? Crisis can lead to innovation. It can show you a different way of doing things, building relationships and ultimately, what you’re made of.
Have you ever uttered the words, “Oh, God, I don’t want to go to work today?” This might be God’s way of answering you. Did you give thanks for everything you had? Were you grateful for your many blessings? Did you realize they were, in fact, blessings? Or did you see them as your due? Something you deserved? I’m not saying your gratitude or lack thereof would have changed what’s happening to you now. But it might have an impact on the way you view what’s happening now.
I don’t believe we learn much when life is easy. Shuffle through your memories. Are the difficult times the ones that stand out? The ones that forced you to turn a corner? That caused a change in your life, often for the better?
We’re so anxious to hang on to what we have. It’s only in the letting go we might grasp something even better. Different, yes. But better.
I encourage you to get up early. Have a cup of coffee. Walk outside. Look around at what you have and where you are. Savor the time you’re given. Listen to the birds sing. They don’t have a care in the world, do they? And then, when you’ve finished your coffee, get your car keys and drive to your local Walmart. Get in line, but stay six feet away from everyone else. Wait while they sanitize a cart for you. Then race to the back of the store and pray to God there’s some toilet paper left. And whether there is or there isn’t, thank God for your many blessings.