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Staying Positive in the Midst of a Pandemic: Finding the Positives

National and global crisis can be overwhelming, anxiety provoking and depressing. We can feel as though we have no control and as parents that this a horrible feeling.

But we do have control of certain things. You know the saying: “We can’t control everything that happens to us, but we can control how we respond.”

This is great advice to keep in mind as we choose how we respond to this latest crisis in dealing with the spread of the COVID19 virus.

Already, there are many positive stories and reminders about prioritizing what is important. Hopefully, by sharing some that I found inspiring and heartwarming, you will feel more ready to take on this major curveball that has been thrown our way.

For starters, here’s a positive take from a meme by “To Write Love On Her Arms”:

Conversations will not be cancelled

Relationships will not be cancelled

Love will not be cancelled

Songs will not be cancelled

Reading will not be cancelled

Self-care will not be cancelled

Hope will not be cancelled

May we lean into the good stuff that remains

I’m also feeling inspired by NBA team owner, Mark Cuban, who pledged to continue to pay the people that work in the Dallas Mavericks area during the NBA suspension.

Dan Gilbert, owner of the Cleveland Cavaliers is compensating all of the hourly and event staff team members at Rocket Mortgage Field House as if the regular season were still taking place.

And Zion Williamson will cover all the salaries for the New Orleans Pelicans arena staff for the next 30 days. And he’s only 19 years old!

Then, there was a co-worker of mine who apologized for being late by explaining: “My older neighbors are self-quarrantined after being exposed to the virus at a funeral in Washington, DC last week, so I was running a few errands for them.”

At Your Teen for Parents, we asked our followers for ideas on what to do with all the extra family time we will probably all have, as schools close, college kids return home and many parents will work from home. The response was wonderful, upbeat and encouraging. Just a few of their ideas:

  • hiking
  • cooking new recipes together
  • learning to play at least one of their teenager’s video games
  • arts and crafts projects
  • scavenger hunts
  • board games
  • spring cleaning
  • sewing

And the list goes on.

Remember, creativity relieves anxiety and stress!

Another post suggested that this could be “Our Finest Hour” if we all come together! As this parent put it, “This is one of those times in life, in history, when your actions are about something bigger. They are about someone else. They are about something greater, a greater good that you may not ever witness. A person you will save who you will never meet.”

What can we do for others? Even small things can count in a big way.

We can call people – especially older friends, and relatives who are staying home and missing out on important social contact.

We can make cards and send them to nursing homes where even family members are restricted.

In warmer climates we can help elderly or compromised neighbors take care of lawns, and gardens.

We can offer to shop for people who can’t or are afraid to do so. We can make them a meal, or bake something special. Or if we have an extra roll or two of toilet paper, maybe share it with a neighbor who isn’t so fortunate.

As a coach of a high school girls’ lacrosse team, our school and our season are now on hold. We are not sure when it will resume. But we are staying positive, especially for our seniors. As we told our team at the end of our last practic, “We will come back from this stronger and better, if we believe we can.” Our team’s theme before each game this year is “Best One Yet.” We don’t know how the game will turn out, but going into it we believe the outcome will be good.

At a time like this, we all have to believe this.

Mindy Gallagher is the Social Media Manager for Your Teen Magazine. She is the assistant coach for the girls’ lacrosse team for Solon High School in Ohio.

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