The Choice to Drown or Breathe

Living in fear and panic is not the answer. When we are under the waters of life such mindframe and actions fueled by dark feelings only fill our lungs with muddy waters rather than the fresh breath that can set us free. The COVID-19 virus is so much more than a bug at this point, it’s a reflection of how we choose to live life. 

How each of us treat the illness and respond to the outbreak says something about the person we are in life, what we direct our focus and energy on can not be hidden as we have nothing to hide behind … our vices stripped, our job titles gone, our bank accounts and retirement funds bleeding. Stripped of what covers our true colors we can either choose to shine or shroud ourselves with fear and panic. 

With the news changing each and every morning about the pandemic, I too change with each day. I’ve had feelings of peace, exhaustion, gratitude, sadness, love, guilt and the list goes on. But when I stop in stillness and push away the curtain of fear and panic the world becomes clear. 

I’m almost ashamed at my behavior only a week ago. I can’t believe where some of my focus was directed at. The little things I took for granted, the foolish items and actions that I was holding as a priority.  I was drowning my authentic self in muddy waters that I was CHOOSING. I was choosing WHAT to be stressed out over, those stressors weren’t choosing me. 

Though I have too many vices and anxieties to name, I can name my comforts that I find myself turning to in this time of turbulence. Finding peace in writing, baking and cooking, being close to my children and connecting with my friends. A week ago I rarely found time to actually put my thoughts to paper. A week ago I despised being in the kitchen out of the time suck that I felt cooking was. A week ago I barely got to spend real quality time with my children since the time we were together was either to and from an activity or getting school work done or running errands. My friends and I were always “busy” with the activities of our kids or some time suck that we chose over one another. It’s almost heartbreaking that only a week ago I chose to devote my time and energy to things that really don’t even matter, things that didn’t even bring real joy, things that just filled my soul with muddy waters rather than letting my authentic self breathe. 

Yes, this virus is causing real pain, real death and real loss – but it’s also creating a second chance, a restart button on life. A restart that doesn’t involve what others think of me. A button that goes beyond grades and the score of a game. Energy that’s fed to the soul rather than to being busy. Care that’s devoted to relationships rather than things. 

The entire world is still under water as we fight against a tiny germ that has an enormous grip on our lives. But will we bust through the waves breathing freely or will we drown in muddy waters? The choice is ours. 

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