I’m a very optimistic person. I’m always trying to find the good in any bad situation. I’m always upbeat and positive, and I like to find humor in the world around me. Having said that, I still find myself struggling with “getting back to normal” after the pandemic. I’m not sure why that is though. Maybe I just need to take a vacation this summer?
When the pandemic hit in March of last year, I honestly thought this would be something that would be over in a short period of time. I tend not to trust the news media too much these days, so when they said it would not end soon, I didn’t believe them. Obviously in this case they were right, but I never thought we’d be shut down for a year.
A lot happens in one year. Because of the pandemic, millions of people worldwide have started working from home. In the United States, 41.8% of the workforce was working remotely full time in December 2020, according to an Upwork report. I’m not sure that figure has changed much six months later because many friends and clients that I’m speaking with are still working from home and most of them are not exactly thrilled about it. As businesses adapt and learn from this remote work experiment, many are altering their long-term plans to accommodate this way of working. I’m not sure that’s really a good idea though.
Oh sure, working from home does have its benefits. The short commute from the kitchen to a makeshift home office in the basement does save a lot of time and gas money, and most of my friends will admit their office “meetings” via Zoom are a lot quicker, but I think we’re also losing too much personal interaction being separated like this. Let me give you an example.
For a total of fourteen months, my Sunday school class has been meeting every Sunday morning via Zoom, but a couple of weeks ago, we began meeting in person again. It was funny because although we still “see” each other every single week, the day we finally got back together again, we spent the first few minutes hugging each other. Full confession, I’m not a hugger, but I truly enjoyed it this day and it made me somehow feel better. It was so nice to see everyone in person again and share some time together. I noticed there was much more laughter and smiles in the room than what I’d seen through my computer screen over the last year. I think as humans, we just need that time together and I suppose that’s why I haven’t felt normal in a very long time.
As we move forward with more things opening up, I guess I need to take some time to venture out again. This last weekend we drove down to the Lake of the Ozarks to see family and I certainly enjoyed that. My wife and I have talked about going to a Royals game or a concert. We used to enjoy going to the movies on Sunday evenings, so maybe we should do that. I thought about making a list of restaurants we haven’t been to and trying something new. For the first time in over a year, we’re also discussing taking a couple of summer vacations. I know that will help me to feel normal again. I love my work, but it’s been 16 months since we took a nice vacation and I need some time to unwind.
What are your plans for this Summer? I’ve love to hear from you.