Woman celebrating birthday at home with family and friends on video call. Laptop and birthday cake with candles on table with family wearing party hats smiling at home.

What’s Your Pandemic Silver Lining?

I imagine you’ve about had it with the pandemic.

Like most of us you might be wondering when can I safely go back the office, get my kids back to school, have dinner with friends, or travel?

And when can we be free of those annoying face masks?

None of us planned for this pandemic and the staggering and tragic loss of life.

But, life doesn’t always go along with our plans.

It’s what we do when our plans go astray that matters.

So how about looking at the positive side for just a moment. Here’s a little story of my best pandemic silver lining:

My Pandemic Birthday

For the past 23 years my birthday tradition has been to see a Broadway Musical. When I’m sitting in a theater, vibrating with energy, I am taken away from my life and completely consumed by the music, scenery, and incredible voices of the performers.

Back in 2020 my teenage memories came roaring back when I saw Ain’t Too Proud: The Life and Times of the Temptations. My husband, Wayne, got such great seats that I could see the performers’ spit take flight.

Well, a Broadway Show wasn’t happening this year.

I was feeling satisfied with my substitute idea: Keep the tradition somewhat alive by watching Hamilton on Disney+.

And then at 5pm on my birthday…

I was on a Zoom call with my sister, Andrea, when she said, “That’s weird. Someone is trying to join our call.”

Before I knew it my entire family popped up on the screen.

And they had a plan.

After Andrea shared interesting stats from my birth year of 1952 — gas cost 12 cents a gallon — my son’s girlfriend shared a video montage of my life to the Beatles singing All You Need is Love. Everyone said the kindest things about how I had impacted them. Of course there were some embarrassingly laughable memories too.

My other sister, Laura, led us in a hilarious game of What Would Jamie Do, when finally Wayne appeared with a carrot cake sporting one single lit candle, which my grandson, Niko, “helped” me to extinguish.

I cried through the whole thing…feeling as full of love as possible.

And the next day I realized that this most special and heartwarming birthday would NEVER have happened without the pandemic.

What about you?

What silver linings has the pandemic brought into your life?

What have you chosen to do that NEVER would have happened without the pandemic?

What choices have you made to reclaim joy, even in the face of the fear and frustration that surrounds you?

Maybe just thinking about these questions will spark some new ideas for having fun and feeling connected to the people who matter most to you during these crazy times.

So, I’d say that while pandemic life is far from normal it gives us an opportunity to discover some new ways to bring joy to our lives.

 

For more insightful advice from Jamie, please visit:

Website: The Less Stress Coach

Books:
Less Stress Business: A Guide to Hiring, Coaching, and Leading Great Employees
Less Stree Life: How I Went from Crazed to Calm and You Can Too

Videos:
Is a Stress-Free Life Possible?
If You Choose to Get Better at Stress – I Guarantee You Can

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