Living with the New Normal

Written by Meredith Kimmel

July 15, 2020

During a recent conversation with my coach, I brought up that I’ve been feeling blah.  I feel like I’m going through the motions of life.  I’m working, taking care of my home, visiting with friends and family at a socially distant, acceptable space, but I’m not excited about much. I said at the beginning of the conversation that “I want to get my excitement back.”

What I discovered through the course of the coaching session is that I’m feeling this way because I just don’t know what the future holds.  I’m not able to make plans for the future because we, as a society, just don’t know what will happen. 

My very smart coach asked me, “Before Covid-19, did we ever really know what the future holds?”  That question struck me as very powerful, because no we didn’t really know what the future holds.  We also can’t control the future.  

In my coach’s opinion and mine as well, Covid-19 has made us more aware of uncertainty and has shattered our false sense of thinking that we know what the future holds and that we are in control.

This is the New Normal.  (In all honesty, I hate the term “New Normal”, note to self-come up with a different term.)

Photo by Sarah Kilian on Unsplash

My conversation with my coach about control reminded me of thoughts I had while my mother was sick.  I remember feeling so helpless and out of control while she was battling her illness and especially on the night that she died.  I remember thinking, if only I could rid her blood of the leukemia, if only I could boost her blood pressure, if only I could breathe for her.  All I could do was sit in the chapel of the hospital on the night that she died, praying to God for her. Either make her better, or take her.  That last night, I didn’t care, because I realized I wasn’t in control.

Once I was able to realize (with help from my coach) that I’m not in control of anything, and I was able to relate my experience with Covid-19 to my mother’s death, I actually started to feel better.  The blah went away.

I decided that I needed to create a life that incorporates Covid-19, the uncertainty, and the inability to make solid plans for the future. I realized that this would not be an easy task for someone like me who is such a planner.

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay 

So, I started strategizing ways to create my new life.  The first thing I did was admit to myself that I can still make plans, but they would need to be flexible and have contingencies.

The next thing I did was admit that I’m burned out and that I need a break.  I feel like I’ve taken enough webinars, have spent enough time on social media, and watched enough news.  I’m not going to Paris or Spain this summer, but that doesn’t mean that I can’t take a week off and stay home.  I live in Florida, 20 minutes from the beach.  People come here to vacation.  I can vacation in my own backyard.    

The last thing that I did was realize that this is the perfect opportunity to shape the future.  We have a reset button.  I’m ready to press it.

Photo by Hello I’m Nik 🎞 on Unsplash

Just because life is different now doesn’t mean it’s worse. 

I can’t wait to see what the future holds. I feel like I’ve just opened a blank book and have the opportunity to write something new. I know at some point; I’ll be visiting the Eiffel Tower and dancing in the streets of Barcelona again.  But for now, it will have to wait and I’m okay with that because right now I’m meant to create and learn something new.

I got my excitement back. 

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