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This too shall pass!

It’s been hard battling those feelings coupled with anxiety and unpredictability that is staring at us in the face. Like most of you, I am also suffocating with the social distancing, drowning in the fear of the unknown, my heart sinking every time I look at the growing numbers of COVID-19 cases around the world. While I force myself to laugh at the memes, forwards and the forced humor that is going around to distract me from the horror of the pandemic, I am missing meeting friends, my brand new & inspiring yoga class, participating at my local writing groups, worrying about the possible loss of the school year and swallowing the bitter pill that I might not be able to visit my home country this year too, after the unexpectedly long wait of five years. I am also working on accepting that it's going to be a while before my dishwasher is fixed. Cheers to more exercise for my fingers! The present crisis has made few unpleasant memories from the past surface. The emphasis on sanitizing surfaces, washing hands every time you touch something and sensible social distancing has taken my mind back a little over 13 years, when my son was in the NICU (Neonatal Intensive Care) and I had to deal with a familiar frenzy in order to keep him safe and healthy. It might not be the best drawn parallel, but that was the first of my unpleasant memories that popped up. I am reminded of the fearful wait outside the NICU, when the pediatrician would give the status update, every day getting worse than the days earlier. Similar to this time, there were no definite answers to all the questions that were filling up the air with toxic uncertainty, self-doubt, deadlocks, forcing us to think that the worse is yet to come. Undoubtedly, it was a testing time, where prayers of friends, family, good wishes of strangers, other parents in similar situations came to the rescue. Lasting far longer than I thought it would and leaving me exhausted both mentally and physically, there was one lesson I learned, this too shall pass. One of the quotes that showed up when I was working on this piece is by Bryant McGill, "Crisis is what suppressed pain looks like; it always comes to the surface. It shakes you into reflection and healing." Like my best friend Tripura says, "There is a lesson in this, for each one of us." Mine has been that I need to be patient with time and accepting of the circumstances. At times like this, being patient and staying positive, despite the darkness surrounding us is the biggest challenge. And yet, it is one of the few things you and I can do. Also, I know you're probably wondering about the photo attached to this piece. It's not a display of my poor photography skills or bad phone camera. I selected it with a purpose. I want it to represent how I am feeling right now, but not quite there yet. The striking contrast of the happy looking red/orange flowers, finding comfort in the dry blades of tall grass surrounding them made it the perfect choice for this piece. I want to feel the hope of those flowers, mindful of what's around, but not letting it dampen the spirit of being alive. The spirit for survival, layered with hope, striving for well-being, even while living under isolation, fear and hopelessness. I know how best each of my loved ones are trying to deal with this. Trust me, this is easy for nobody. While we work on keeping ourselves safe, sane and help the community in whatever ways we can, let's put out our most positive vibes for the universe to end this pandemic at the earliest. Let us support each other as we discover better ways to cope and stay emotionally well during this difficult time. I am doing my best to do my part well to flatten the curve. I am sure you're doing yours too. Let's beat this together!

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