Last Tuesday I got several texts from friends saying, “Thinking of you. You OK?” When I called them back, I said, “Wow, the new must be looking bad!” and we had a laugh. Sure enough, the news was dire for NYC. Luckily, New Yorkers have lived through a lot in the last 20 years. But what I noticed was that we’d started to turn a collective corner. Even as the anxiety continues to build, we’re tired of self-obsession and are getting beyond the initial panic of only thinking of ourselves and immediate family. That’s good. People don’t come out of crisis on their own, we come out via community. Note to self for when we get back to work: It’s the same there. Community and collaboration get you much further.
My friend Pamela is a minister at All Souls in New York. She says that the antidote for self-obsession is compassion. So if you want to feel better and calmer during this period, reach out to someone to see how they are. Share a funny or inspiring story. It goes a long way.
A great trick for those who want to help elderly, possibly isolated people. Give a call and see if they have a computer. If so, teach them how to upload Zoom! We can’t visit physically, but we can help them be less alone.