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Stitching a new garment

by Michael Ford last modified 24 Apr, 2020 05:41 PM

With lockdown extended for another month and all of us facing a long period of recovery, many are wondering when and if things will return to 'normal'.

Stitching a new garment

Image courtesy wallpaperflare

Licensed Lay Minister and former mental health nurse Chris Cox has been reflecting on what normal might be post virus:

"When I worked as a mental health nurse I'd often get asked the same question, it was phrased differently by different people but essentially it was something like... 'when will I get back to the way I was before?'

"I knew what they meant of course but, with sensitivity, and in a way that emphasised the positive nature of the change, I felt it was important to explain that going back to the way they were was simply not possible.

"Their experience will have changed them, they will have learned, grown, and inevitably moved from where they were. It would not be possible for them to simply go back as if nothing had happened.

"In a similar way, this experience of enforced confinement will inevitably change us and there is no going back to what we were before. We must reflect on what we've learned, explore how we can live differently, and reprioritise what we do. The following reflection by Sonya Renee Taylor says it wonderfully.

"'We will not go back to normal. Normal never was. Our pre-corona existence was not normal other than we normalized greed, inequity, exhaustion, depletion, extraction, disconnection, confusion, rage, hoarding, hate and lack. We should not long to return, my friends. We are being given the opportunity to stitch a new garment. One that fits all of humanity and nature.'

"When eventually this crisis passes, and we are tempted to 'get back to normal' as quickly as possible, it will be time to stop and reflect on what was so unhealthy about our 'pre-corona existence'.

"It will be time for us to 'stitch together a new garment', one that envelops us in a more thoughtful, compassionate, nurturing way of being, a way of being based on love for each other, our communities and for all of creation."

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