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March 15, 2020

Remember the Light: a Love Letter to Humans during COVID-19.

Dear beautiful, fragile, scared humans,

We are panic-stricken.

We are in the shadow of eerie silence commingled with fear. So much fear.

Under lockdown, we miss the familiar current of our normal lives.

Our sense of safety and security have been yanked out from under us.

In the face of pandemics, we are naked and vulnerable.

We scrub our hands until they are red and tender and raw.

Some of us hoard, some of us act irrationally, exercising what little control we feel we have left.

Some of us watch the news to excess, many of us are overloaded with information but little answers.

Some of us are struggling financially, many emotionally.

Abandoned in uncertainty, we feel triggered and confused and anxious.

Some of us feel anger, some of us feel panic, some of us feel denial, some of us feel numb.

Many of us are scared sh*tless.

Yes, there is disease. Yes, there is death.

In isolation, in quarantines, and in cancellations, we feel alone.

Our bodies may not be succumbing to disease, but our hearts collectively are in pain.

I invite you to move closer to the hurt, the anxiety, the grief. Cry, release. Feel what is moving through you. Let the tears flow. Touch your tender heart. Feel.

Then step outside into the sunshine. Remember the light.

Remember that thousands of miles away, Tibetan Buddhist monks are meditating for your happiness.

Remember that in Tuscany, people filled the streets with song from their balconies and homes as they sat in quarantine.

Remember that Matisse and Van Gogh still hang in museums in Paris.

Remember there are people giving selflessly, opening their hearts to the sick, the poor, the vulnerable.

Remember that at this very moment, a baby is being born.

Remember someone is falling in love, many are making love.

Remember that joy still exists.

Remember the light.

Remember that spring is coming.

Remember the night sky, remember to dream.

Remember to place your hands on your heart and breathe.

Remember how beautiful and precious you are.

Remember the light.

Remember connection has not been canceled. Hope has not been canceled. Beauty has not been canceled. Happiness has not been canceled. Love has not been canceled.

Remember the light.

Buddhist nun and teacher Pema Chödrön once said:

“To be fully alive, fully human, and completely awake is to be continually thrown out of the nest. To live fully is to be always in no-man’s-land, to experience each moment as completely new and fresh. To live is to be willing to die over and over again.”

In our fragility, we are truly beautiful.

May we remember to be fully alive, remember to be awake, remember to be present. Let us show compassion, let us love.

Remember, dearest humans, that this too shall pass. Remember this moment is all we have. Remember our hearts.

Remember the light.

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Joanna Engman  |  Contribution: 2,085

author: Joanna Engman

Image: Daniel Tafjord / Unsplash

Editor: Kelsey Michal