As a wife, mother, daughter, business owner, student and much more, I am constantly trying to keep up with deadlines and multi-task through this thing we called life. I am certain that many of you taking the time to read this blog are in the same boat. Before the COVID-19 pandemic arose, I always felt as if there were just not enough hours in the day to do everything that I needed to do. Today, I feel differently.
As of Tuesday morning, The New York Times reported that 43,499 people in the United States have tested positive for the coronavirus. Sadly, 537 people in our great country passed away from this virus. The numbers continue to increase daily. When I turn on the television to watch the news, the only story that is covered is COVID-19. We as a nation are forced to “find a new normal” and maintaining connections with our family and friends proves to be more challenging day by day.
Although this pandemic is depressing to say the least, I choose to see the positives throughout this uncertain time. Life constantly provides us with opportunities for learning. Here are a few “life lessons” that I have been reminded of these past few weeks in light of COVID-19. Hopefully these reminders will help those of you that are reading this whether you are in recovery from substance use or not.
1. Be Present In Each and Every Moment – Life can be so stressful at times. Before this pandemic, I consistently found my mind racing with all of the things that I had to complete. I would attend meetings or spend time with my daughter, but I wasn’t truly present. This time at home has allowed me the opportunity to be present for my family. The To-Do-List can wait. My family needs me to be present and enjoy the time that I get to spend with them. Besides, we may never have this sort of time on our hands again. Let’s make every moment count.
2. Find New Ways to Connect – As the Co-Founder and COO of The Recovery Connection, I truly believe that “connection” is the key to finding a life in recovery. At The Recovery Connection, we accept all pathways to recovery but firmly believe that relationships and connections with others will set our residents up for success. Download that Zoom account so that you are able to log into meetings, write a thank you note to someone you haven’t connected with in a long time, or answer that phone call, even when you don’t want to!
3. Find Time to Start That One Thing You Have Put Off For Years – With more time on our hands, today is the perfect time to start that one thing that you have been putting off for quite some time. I have committed to cleaning and de-cluttering some areas in my house over the course of the next thirty days. Find the courage to clean that room, sign up for that online class, or learn how to scrapbook. The sky is the limit and you should make time to do something that you want to do that will enhance your life.
4. Do The Best You Can – Don’t Be So Hard on Yourself – Yesterday we learned that public schools in the state of Virginia will be closed through the rest of the academic school year. This breaks my heart for my 6-year old daughter, and I feel so sad for those high school seniors that won’t get to participate in a graduation ceremony. In light of schools being closed, does this mean that all of us parents need to learn how to teach our children “new math” and start planning out language arts lessons? Absolutely NOT! This means we need to try our best, engage in fun learning opportunities with our children, build that fort in the backyard, and don’t beat yourself up if you don’t do it perfectly.
5. Wash Your Hands! – Need I say more!?
COVID-19 has somehow, someway, impacted every single person that I know. In difficult times such as these, we need to stick together and make the best of the situation. If you are struggling today, you are not alone and we will get through this, TOGETHER.
Written by: Meredith Speir, Co-Founder & COO of The Recovery Connection