Time to Take a Moment for Yourself
It is time to take a moment to find your focus and perspective. A lot has happened this year. We are in a pandemic where a deadly virus is still spreading relentlessly across the globe.
Millions have lost their jobs. Too many have lost their lives. We became an instant virtual society. Politics took center stage. Safety protocols became political lightning rods. The news and social media were full of negatives.
The Peace Corps community was not immune. A full-scale evacuation sent Evacuated Peace Corps Volunteers (EPCVs) scrambling. Many Returned Peace Corps Volunteers (RPCVs) stepped up to help however they could. Some RPCVs joined the racial justice movement. And, many RPCVs went into high gear to help in getting out the vote, lowering barriers to healthcare, and pouring ourselves into many other causes.
But did you take on too much? Have you been feeling frustrated and short-tempered? Do you get anxious watching the covid numbers continue to climb? Or, are you now taking more risks instead of following covid protocols? Are you upset at feeling restricted? You are not alone. Many of us feel this way.
We Did This Before And Can Do It Again
Take a moment and take a breath. Find that inner calm. Center yourself.
Yes, we are all dealing with covid fatigue. But just remember that one person really can make a difference. The USA is recording one million infections a week. And, approximately 270,000 people have died in the USA alone. Experts are projecting over 2,000 deaths a day before the end of the year.
If the people who infected them had worn masks, stayed physically distant from them, and were tested, how many deaths could have been prevented? And just like many PCVs will not know how many people benefited from their efforts, we will never know how many asymptomatic people avoided infecting someone vulnerable just by following safety protocols.
This is not the first time you found yourself in a mentally-challenging situation. Isolation is difficult but manageable especially when it is for the greater good. Learning new ways of accomplishing tasks pushed your creativity. Getting back to basics showed you what is truly important. Did you learn (again) that you are stronger than you realized? Sounds familiar? As PCVs, we all once had to adjust to a “new normal”. We can do it again.
Take a Moment For You First And Then For Others
So take a moment for yourself. Do something just for you. Recognize things you can be grateful for. Give yourself a break from things that stress you out. Thank yourself for doing your part. You are making a difference!
Then take a moment to thank the grocery store workers, food processing teams, delivery people, truck drivers, hospital support staff, public transportation drivers, volunteers, and everyone else who keep this country running but do not get the applause. Encourage others to continue their efforts. Be patient and understanding. We are in this together!
Enjoy the holidays safely!