And just like that, summer is half-way done. As we near the end of July, we are now pretty much into the full swing of a ‘new normal’. The traffic on the roads is practically back to its usual, congested, self. I never thought I would say this, but it’s kind of nice to see a normal volume of cars on the road again. Kind of.
But alas, it’s certainly nowhere near a normal we were once used to.
Now, the sound of hand sanitization dispensers squirting, the visuals of virtually everyone around you wearing some form of a face covering, physical distancing markers, temperature checks while out running routine errands – this is the world we are now living in. And I have a feeling it will remain this way for quite some time. We should remember, too, that this new normal is not life after a pandemic, as it is far from being behind us, but rather life as we adapt to living within a pandemic.
After being confined for months, I also returned to the office this past week – and it was refreshing. Even though I had gotten used to working remotely, I was missing out on the finer things that we tend to take for granted – like just getting dressed for work! You can only find comfort in staying in your PJ’s all day for so long.
It’s been nice being able to interact with people in person after becoming so used to zoom calls and video chats. Of course, when all of this first started, the ability to do video calls was very much welcomed as part of being able to maintain some semblance of business continuity, but as the months went by, the lack of physical interaction was becoming more prominent. As the saying goes, everything should be in moderation and too much of anything is not good.
Of course, things are obviously very different now with the need to fill out a COVID survey every morning, the need to wear a mask when meeting in close proximity with your colleagues, etc, but nonetheless, it felt nice to feel even the slightest hint of normalcy. It was humbling to see that the building has taken all of the proper measures to keep a safe and protective environment for those making their way back in as well.
This can also be said for my recent visit to the dentist. I was pleasantly impressed with how comfortable the atmosphere was when I went. Every consideration was taken into account: from the temperature check upon arrival, to the N95 masks and face shields for all staff. You even had to rinse your mouth by spitting back into the cup and not the attached sink bowl to avoid splashing. Now I can’t speak for all dental offices, but if anyone has any pre-conceived notions about going, try not to and see for yourself.
2020 has certainly been a year we won’t soon forget – and we are only half way through it. There have been a lot of ‘eff 2020’ memes and gifs floating around, but on the other hand, I do think we should remember that amid all of the negativity, some very heart-warming and positive milestones did take place that we shouldn’t overshadow. For expectant mothers, as an example, this year was a blessing in that they welcomed a newborn into their lives. It would not be right to look at the year your child was born as the year of all around doom and gloom for reasons that an innocent human being coming into this world would have had nothing to do with, you know what I mean? Just a different perspective on things.
I’d rather look at 2020 as a year where many of us hit the ‘reset’ button on our lives, where the lockdown enabled us to take the time to reflect and re-establish our sense of self, appreciate the finer things, re-evaluate the quality of the connections in our lives, gravitate towards those that uplift us and bring out the joy in us, and overall assess what makes us truly happy and fulfilled and live our life accordingly. 2020 is quite possibly our starkest reminder yet of how precious life is and to live each day with kindness, humility and gratitude.