And do not forget to do good and to share with others, for with such sacrifices God is pleased. Hebrews 13:16
There is nothing I love more than celebrating the freedoms that our country is founded on. “We the people” is close to my heart and NOW is a time for “we the people” to come together to fight the Coronavirus. I believe in social distancing, flattening the curve, allowing those who are elderly or have a weakened immune systems to enter grocery stores early to get supplies without risk of danger to their health. I have extreme gratitude and mad respect for those who are risking their health to help those that need it. My heart goes out to parents who are struggling with the new found job of “teacher.” My oldest son was born three months after 9/11 and will potentially graduate from high school virtually among the Pandemic of 2020. I understand that we are a nation (world) of people who are frightened, unsure, worried….
I am prepared to deal with these emotions in my home, with my friends, in my ministry. I am a very strong person and I can take a lot! I’ve got you! I’m best at yelling out the battle cry and cheering us on as “we the people” hunker down and fight this thing! All for one and one for all!
What I have been unprepared for, what has me the most upset…is the reaction of my fourteen year old son, Cooper. He is beside himself that this has ruined his social life including friends, sleep overs, shooting hoops and eating out. Today, our beach vacation for spring break was cancelled. The beach is closed because people are making wise decisions and doing their part to prevent the spread of this virus. His first questions was whether or not I was going to allow him to hang out with his friends and “ease up” on this social distancing thing? In complete and total transparency with you reader, my initial reaction was anger. I could feel it bubbling up inside me. Has this kid watched the news? Listened to his teachers? Participated in ANY conversation that involves a social conscience in the last two weeks??? I’m sure that read all over my face as I tried to remain calm and keep my voice even. I had to remind him again that, although we don’t know what the future hold, we have to practice social distancing not for him but for the benefit of others.
Easily, one of my top ten favorite movies of all time is Star Trek II, The Wrath of Khan. I grew up with a “trekkie” and will go to the mat all day to defend the “original” Star Trek’s and no one is a better captain than James T. Kirk! My dad would have us watch all the original reruns and poo-pooed the Next Generation and so on. Dad is definitely a purist when it comes to that stuff. No remakes…nothing beats the original! At the end of the movie, Spock goes into this containment area to prevent the death of those on the ship who are facing nuclear disaster. The only problem??? Self sacrifice. As I watch through bleary tears every. single. time. I see Spock as he’s dying in the chamber and Kirk runs to him and asks “why?” Spock says “the needs of the many outweigh the needs or the few…or the one.” Spock then makes the Vulcan sign and Kirk responds in kind and that’s how Spock dies (sorry if this spoiled the movie if you haven’t seen it).
Not that I’m asking Cooper to be a Hollywood statistic, give me the Vulcan sign and call it a day BUT I do want him to THINK OF THE NEEDS OF THE MANY!!! I want him to think of his grandparents, the seasoned saints at our church. I have a weakened immune system…I would like him to think of me. It’s exhausting telling him “no” all day everyday but “no” is what he will hear. No, we will not endanger those around us. No, we will not think of ourselves before others in this crisis. No, we will not forget to do good and sacrifice for others, because it is what God has commanded us to do.
This is a season of hard, uncertainty and valuable life lessons. My goal is to raise thoughtful, socially aware children. My big three for parenting are 1. identity in Christ 2. Be Kind 3. Leave the world better than when you found it. Social distancing falls into the third category and it’s that simple. So, I’ll grab my broom and witches hat and continue to be the meanest mom because (just maybe) there’s a lesson in there and my prayer is that he will listen and obey.
Book recommendation for those who feel anxious: Anxious for Nothing by Max Lucado
Movie recommendation for those who like awesome movies: Star Trek II, Wrath of Khan