Essays on Faith: The world as we knew it no longer exists

Essential reporting in volatile times.

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Our world as we know it is not the same — it doesn’t exist due to the COVID-19 virus. What we were able to do, being social human beings, has now come to a screeching halt. It’s not normal for any of us. We can’t go out to eat, see any sporting events, movies, attend church, have a yard sale, and on and on. Nothing is the same.

Perhaps one of the saddest things we’re facing is that if a loved one passes away, we can’t attend the funeral unless perhaps it’s a relative. Heartbreaking.

Heartbreaking as well is that so many have lost their jobs due to so many closures of restaurants and businesses. The worry on those (as well as the owners) is tenfold. No paycheck. How will many pay rent, make a care payment or afford food? Too many.

We were not made to stay inside, and yes, the desire to go about our prior activities is on the “want list.”

There are many things we can’t do now and that leads to frustration, which is sadly coupled with anger. But the reason for all of the above is that COVID-19 is deadly. We’ve been warned to social distance, and what we’ve seen on TV is beyond frightening as the death rate climbs. It’s grim. We don’t want to watch the news, and yet we do. The virus doesn’t discriminate as it’s taken the lives of famous people, members of medical staffs in so many states, and average people, with more deaths predicted.

Overwhelming. Brain taxing. Scary as all get out.

The only answer is to follow rules, stay inside if sick and know that survival is what everyone wants. Yes, it’s abnormal in every way in comparison to life as we knew it, but know that none of us are alone — we’re all caught up in the same gigantic spider web in the form of an unseen pandemic.

So what can we do? We can channel our inner desire to live, to create anything such as art, music, etc., for we all have these inside of us. Anger and frustration are normal emotions in this time, but don’t take it out on others because many are pushed to the brink as well. If you’re inside, you can always scream to let out pent emotions — but not to scare others.

In this time, don’t forget the little child inside of you that we all have. Some have forgotten it, but it’s there. What did you do as a kid if you were alone? Not the bad things, but the cool things you did to entertain yourself. Do you remember? Surely we all do, and who cares if you’re inside or outside doing and/or making what others may call childish.

These are desperate times in trying to stay safe, and keep our sanity. Remember people will do some disastrous things such as scams, so be alert.

Thousands and thousands of hospital staff, doctors, nurses, respiratory therapists, as well as military service men and women, are putting their lives on the line daily trying to save others’ lives. Included are EMTs, policemen and women, deputy sheriffs, state police, officials on city, state and national levels — all of whom are working tirelessly. They deserve our thanks and gratitude.

In the movie, “The Shawshank Redemption,” the line “Get busy livin’ or get busy dyin’ ” is unforgettable. Pray we live and survive this terrible virus. None of us are invincible — none.

On a personal note, take care of yourself, stay inside if you’re sick, call the hospital or an agency if you think you’ve been exposed to COVID-19 so that your life (as well as those near you) can be saved.

I don’t like this any better than you with self-isolation, but consider the alternative. Keep hope inside of you. Create something (to divert your mind) that will make others and you happy. You never know if one creation can affect many even if that wasn’t your intention. Share it in some form if you can.

Things will get worse — but after “worse” is “better.” I pray that “better” arrives as soon as possible. We need it.

Essays on Faith may be submitted to gazette@wvgazettemail.com.

Find more Essays on Faith at www.wvgazettemail.com/life/religion.

Funerals for Thursday, July 2, 2020

Adkins, Anne - 6 p.m., Roush Funeral Home, Ravenswood.

Morton, Freda - 11 a.m., Hafer Funeral Home, Elkview.

Nunn, Terry - 7 p.m., Good Shepherd Mortuary, South Charleston.

Olive, Rex - 2 p.m., Hafer Funeral Home, Elkview.

Reynolds, George - 2 p.m., Dodd & Reed Funeral Home, Webster Springs.

Rhodes, Ella - 4 p.m., Waybright Funeral Home, Ripley.

Rose, Carol - 10 a.m., Cunningham Memorial Park, St. Albans.

Waldron, Helen - 1 p.m., Forks of Coal Cemetery, Alum Creek.

Wibberg, David - 11 a.m., St. Anthony Catholic Church, Charleston.