A Pandemic in Spring

I’m quite sure I am not qualified to write about pandemics, so I won’t try to in any scientific sense. But I will say, it has struck me that going through all this in spring as opposed to say November or December is a small blessing of its own. Those of us lucky enough to live out in the country, or in small towns, have been blessed with one of the most glorious springs I can recall. And I suspect even in the cities, spring has brightened an otherwise bleak situation.

Everything is early, and rarely have I seen red buds, azaleas, and dogwood all in bloom at once. Oaks are also early to flower this year, just based on my casual observation and my allergies to oak pollen—which has confused my efforts to figure out whether I need to be concerned about every sniffle or sneeze that comes along, due to COVID-19 potentially at work (check that temperature). This has been and will continue to be a very serious health crisis for many, not to mention the economic woes that will likely touch every one of us in some way. And while the outdoors is not a cure for any of it, having the sights and sounds of spring around us can sure help ease the stress.

My heart goes out to all those families being touched deeply by the loss of loved ones. To those who risk their own health, and possibly even their lives daily insuring the rest of us are OK—words can’t express the gratitude. And to all the unsung heroes, those we often take for granted, maybe we won’t take them for granted anymore.

I don’t have much to offer except the hope of spring. “Hope springs eternal”, “where there is hope there is life,” the sayings go on. I hope this crisis may lead to more of us stopping to truly absorb the moments, as cliché as that sounds. I wonder if we each looked at a red bud flowering like it was the first time we’d ever seen it, and what if we each had one day…we were brought out of the darkness for one day…and given the chance to see a scarlet cardinal, or a mottled blue jay for the first time, and maybe the last, and a salmon-colored sunset against scaled clouds approaching from the west, and if we heard the piccolo whistle of a wren then, and smelled the pollen scented air, and felt the warm breeze all at that moment, would we enjoy the richness and complexity of it all? Would we be better able to soak it in? Would we slow down, ease off, breathe deeply, and forgive and give thanks? If this pandemic leads anywhere, I hope it is there.

Stay safe, optimistic, and brave—spring blessing to all of you.

5 Comments

  1. Yes this should give us much reflection but I doubt it will. Humans want to conquer not accommodate. Hypertension, diabetes and respiratory issues contribute to the death rate but no one is calling for changes is our diets or consumption. Hypertension, diabetes, obesity, vaping and smoking illegal or legal drugs has not stopped anyone in the past and all those factors have long contributed to death rates. So does of course old age. Age we can not change but all the others we could. But we do not want to. We want a vaccine, a cure for covid, more Ventilators,transplants and eternal life via modern medicine. Is it a wake up call? I doubt it. People will be even more germ phobic and most likely resume their old bad habits. I more worry about our wildlife now than ever since humans even more so identify it as germ carrying without really understanding that we have contributed to this tsunami.

  2. Marc, you have the kindest, most expressive way to speak about what you see and feel around you. Thank you for these wonderful insights. Makes me want to do a better job of absorbing the sights and sounds and people around me. Thanks again, Be Safe. Robin

  3. Marc,

    Your blog was a breath of fresh air that eased my cabin fever during these long hours of “distancing”.

    Thanks and may the Lord bless you and yours.

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