Silver Linings: Ordinary Opportunities

“I don’t want to stay in the bad place, where no one believes in silver linings or love or happy endings.” ― Matthew Quick, The Silver Linings Playbook

Tonight a friend texted me that it was interesting and surreal to witness how the COVID-19 pandemic shifted perspective and purpose for her, us, and the world. It’s become a familiar narrative for many. What was a generic conversation in the United States a few weeks ago became a specific and serious one this week. And as news intensified and reactions ramped up, I found myself looking for a silver lining. Is there such a thing in the midst of global crisis?

I firmly believe there’s a silver lining in almost every circumstance and challenge. To begin, how awesome is this video from Italy? I keep writing it, saying it, and thinking it, but these are unprecedented times. The world will not be the same after this pandemic nor should it be. We’ve been called to think and act differently in order to protect ourselves, others, and the greater good.

My daughter asked me why we’re home and why we can’t go places. I told her quite simply (because she’s five) that people are getting sick and we need to help. I told her because we’re home we’re helping. There it is folks–the silver lining.

I’ve always wanted to do something helpful for the world. Far too often we look to the extraordinary as a model. This can’t be found via an influencer. This isn’t determined by a top ten list, pop culture phenomenon, or politician.  Our individual choices construct collective positive and profound impact. Social distancing has silver linings. We’re helping. We’re saving. We’re creating. Helping lives, saving lives, creating the better and healthier world we need right now.

And as I sit here surrounded by the ones I love most in this world I can’t help but be filled with grounding gratitude. I am thankful for this time together as a family. I am grateful to be social distancing responsibly, and I am indebted to the brave people who put their lives at risk to save others.

There will be all sorts of silver linings out of this ordeal. Share them. We need social distancing, but we also need joy and connection. We are ordinary citizens of the world who together share extraordinary hope and love. Stay well, friends.