Fearmongering, Influencers, What’s OK, Pendulums, Sacrifice and Frightened, Unflinching Heroes
I wrote a story on January 28 about this sign I have in my bathroom.
At that time, when I looked at that sign from my bath, Coronavirus was not on my mind. Yesterday, with Coronavirus very much on my mind, I looked over from my bubbly tub and read the words again and thought, Sign-maker, are you sure?
Social media: The pendulum swings wide in my newsfeed. One on end, posts explicitly accuse all of this (not just the toilet paper hoarders) as an overreaction and “fearmongering.” I want to ask my friends who post such things to be careful. These statements may influence others—like those Spring-breakers on the Florida beaches. I’m guessing those tanned, taut partiers are not worried, and they’re being incredibly selfish.
I’m not panicking. At this point, I’m still getting out and riding my mountain bike, steering clear of anyone. The world feels a little out of control (as if I ever had any control of anything outside myself), so I am focusing on the things I do have a little control over. I did an inventory yesterday of everything I have in my pantry, fridge, freezer, etc. Made a list of things I need. John planted our garden. I’m keeping my sense of humor while taking this all seriously. I’m reaching out to friends and family. I’m taking a lot of bubble baths. I’m paying attention, trying to decipher between Coronavirus facts and rumors.
The other end of the pendulum is this piece I read last night.
It’s not one of panic and fearmongering, but a voice of unflinching heroism. I actually just wanted to doublecheck the definition of the word unflinching, so I looked it up. It is defined as not showing fear or hesitation in the face of danger or difficulty. The author, in my opinion, is showing fear but she’s not showing hesitation. What she’s sacrificing, she’s sacrificing for us. Many of us are familiar with the words of Franklin D. Roosevelt: “Courage is not the absence of fear, but rather the assessment that something else is more important than fear.”
I’m writing this post today not because I am under the cray-illusion that I can control you or anyone else, but maybe I might influence someone. If you are relaxed, chill, super cazj …not the teeniest bit worried about coronavirus, well, enjoy your bubbleland, but maybe take a moment from tapping on your keyboard and give this nurse’s words a read and some thought.
Be careful. Please err on the side of caution. Words matter. Causing her sacrifice to be wasted is not OK.
We’ll all see how this story ends. I’m choosing to trust in the Sign Maker’s version of OK.