COLUMN: Unprecedented times for you maybe, humanity not so much

We have passed the halfway mark of the roller-coaster year known as 2020

We have passed the halfway mark of the roller-coaster year known as 2020.

So far, 2020 has been marked by one protest after another, extreme weather close to home and abroad, and let us not forget the pandemic that has ground the world economy to nearly a halt.

With everything that has gone on so far in 2020, I’m pretty sure recovery is going to take years. There’s going to be no quick fix to repair the damage that has been done.

READ ALSO: Canada not ready for second wave of COVID-19, Senate committee says

The events of the last few months have been unprecedented in our lifetimes, however, this is not the first pandemic we have faced as a world, and undoubtedly will not be our last.

As the province continues to reopen, people are excited to get back to ‘normal,’ whatever normal is.

My only hope in the return to normalcy is that people take a look at the lessons learned over the last few months, and really focus on bringing back the parts of ‘normal’ that worked and leave the rest behind.

I’ve learned a couple of lessons myself over the last few months, which I’d like to share.

First, it’s okay not to be going all the time.

I’m fortunate in that the lockdown didn’t have a huge impact on my day-to-day activity because I generally work from home. The major changes that I faced were to do with the many meetings and events I cover for the paper.

With the provincial ban on large gatherings many of the meetings I regularly attended transitioned to online meetings, and the majority of the events I covered were cancelled which left me with some extra time on my hands, and I was actually able to build some healthy rest time into my schedule.

Second, I learned that as much as I miss the human connection with face to face meetings, there is something to be said for the efficiency of taking them virtually. The majority of the meetings I’ve attended virtually have all taken somewhat less time while still covering the usual number of agenda items.

Finally, I can be as bored or as busy as I want to be, pandemic or no.

I just need to be able to adjust my focus appropriately. Part of the reason I haven’t noticed a huge impact on my day-to-day is because of school. I was already taking online courses through the University of Athabasca, so the only change there was with the paper slowing down I had more time to focus on my studies.

I do miss the human contact and will be grateful when events start happening again.

I miss being able to take pictures at rodeo weekends or sports days. I miss talking to people face-to-face while collecting information for the stories I write.

Still, I know that what we are dealing with now will not last forever, nothing ever does. With the province starting to reopen, I am already getting busier again.

READ ALSO: Nearly 11M Canadians have received COVID-19 emergency benefit, wage subsidy: Trudeau

The first six months have been unprecedented in our lifetimes, and the way things are going these unprecedented events are going to continue for awhile longer.

This isn’t the first pandemic our species has weathered, and if you look at the information surround the Spanish Flu Pandemic which occurred around 1918-1920, we are doing some of the same things now as we did back then to limit the spread.

We got through it then, and we will get through it again. The human species is resilient.

Kevin J. Sabo is an Alberta-based writer. For more news from Vancouver Island and beyond delivered daily into your inbox, please click here.

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