On March 18, 2020, I began working from home full-time, with the exception of going into the office about once a month. Today, August 23, 2021 (524 days later), I begin working in the office four days a week, with one weekly work-from-home day.
In recognition of the intervening 17 months, I reflect on how I have changed.
|March 18, 2020||August 23, 2021|
|Depressed||Depressed but medicated|
|Baked bread every week||Diagnosed celiac|
|Alcohol most days of the week||Alcohol about once a week|
|Cannabis about twice a month||Cannabis most days|
|Vehemently anti-Taylor Swift||Listened to folklore and evermore exclusively for 9 months|
|Thin eyebrows||Natural eyebrows|
|On improv house team||Improv theater closed|
|Chronically single||7 months into the best relationship of my life|
Mystics teach non-judgment as one aspect of true freedom and enlightened living. We naturally judge events, situations, people, and other parts of the world as “good” or “bad.” Looking back, perhaps that which was labeled “good” led to suffering, while that which was labeled “bad” led to positive change. Our inability to control events and outcomes means we cannot predict the actual effect of situations, so our judgment inevitably leads to suffering.
The pandemic has unequivocally led to suffering and pain for myself and billions of others. At the same time, my growth and change over the last 524 days was made possible in large part by the pandemic. I am reminded that when Hurricane Andrew destroyed my family’s home 29 years ago today, it cleared a path leading to everything good in my life.
I am grateful for all the things that have remained the same: my family and I are healthy, my cats are adorable and affectionate, and I never lost my job or income. I do not wish for hurricanes or disease. I wish only for patience and resilience.