Liking your own company

Are you a positive person in a crisis? Think about it.

I was raised with positive people that never gave up no matter what. I would like to say that I still don’t. But there are times ...

Times like now, with the scare of the coronavirus and shortages of food and necessary commodities, we are almost in a panic and listening to every news report of the latest patient who has contacted or been exposed to the virus. What can we do about it? We all feel a bit overwhelmed.

I received this reminder from a friend who got it from a friend:

“When this is over, may we never take for granted a handshake with a stranger, full shelves at the store, conversations with neighbors, a crowded theater, a Friday night out.

The taste of communion, a routine checkup, a school rush each morning, coffee with a friend. A stadium roaring, each deep breath. A boring Tuesday (or any day), life itself.

When this pandemic ends, may we find that we have become more like the people we wanted to be, we were called to be, we hoped to be. And may we stay that way ... better for each other because of the worst.”

My cup runneth over with thoughts people have shared with me about being positive and cautious and not giving up, that things will get better. This is a temporary crisis. With the help of wonderful friends and family, life will go on.

When this pandemic ends ... and it will ... every game will sell out, every restaurant will have a two-hour wait, every child will be glad to be back in school, everyone will love their job, the stock market will skyrocket and we will embrace and shake hands. That’s gonna be a pretty good day.

So hang in there.

Wouldn’t it be great if we all stayed calm and kept a positive attitude? There is not much more that we can do about our confined situations right now, but we do have the choice of whether we accept it and let it pass over, or to stay in and dither and complain. Being in a panic does not make time pass any faster. Never forget: “This too shall pass!”

I do think we should be prepared, stay away from crowds, wash our hands often, eat healthy, get enough sleep, keep hydrated, take safety precautions and stay informed. But that is the norm for every day.

I shall never forget the positive people that went to exercise at Integris Rehab with my late husband, Jim. We mingled with people who are very positive. Most of them had problems with their heart, either surgery or other heart disorders. Or many of them had lung problems, either COPD or waiting for a lung transplant. They all were so positive and cheerful. One could not go there without feeling better and blessed. Not one of those people displayed self-pity or deep depression. We always left there with joy in our hearts because they were all so positive and upbeat. Being with them was good medicine and made us appreciate what we had healthwise.

If we could only rid ourselves of the fear and panic that we are feeling right now, we would certainly be on a road to peace and tranquility. What we are experiencing is like a ghost that nobody has seen before. Very soon it will be cleared up and just a memory. However, we must never forget and be unprepared again. We will know next time (if there is a next time) how to handle things better and not let us go into a panic.

We may experience a crisis again or a different disease develop. If we do, so what? What can we do about it but to trust our Heavenly Father to care for us and provide for us? We must keep the faith. We must carry on and remember that worry does nothing ... absolutely nothing. It does not change a thing. So cheer up. Get on your phone and call someone to cheer them up. Bake a loaf of bread. Clean a closet. Write a letter. Give yourself a facial. Go through old pictures and mark the name on the back. Sort old valentines, birthday cards, Christmas cards, etc., and read them over and over to plant the memories in your mind, and then destroy them. They will mean nothing to the next generation. Stay busy and occupied and calm. Be prepared and not alarmed.

Try to stay positive. May we who have the luxury of working from home remember those who must choose between preserving their health or paying their rent. May we have the flexibility to care for our children when their schools close, remembering those who have no options.

May we who have had to cancel a trip remember those who have no safe place to go. May we who are losing our margin money in the tumult of the economic market remember those who have no margin at all. May we who settle in for a quarantine at home remember those who have no home. As fear grips our nation, let us choose love during this time when we cannot physically wrap our arms around each other, let us yet find ways to be the loving embrace of God to our neighbor. Amen!

Those of us “old-timers” who lived during and after the Great Depression know how to live through any situation. We know how to make do ... or do without. We know how to cook from scratch from what is in our pantry. It may not be perfect, but it will sustain life. We know how to keep busy and think of others. We know how to look for the light at the end of the tunnel and stay positive. It was not always easy, but we survived and are the better for it. We hope all the same for the “young sprouts” during this time.

The old pioneer spirit will prevail. We will survive. We will look back on this time and tell our grandchildren of the lessons we learned. We will persevere. We will overcome. We will turn to our loving Father for the comfort and peace He provides. We will be OK.

Haven’t made this for a long time. Serve over rice with a vegetable, and supper is ready.

Sweet-Sour Chicken Breasts

6 to 8 boneless chicken breasts

8-ounce can cranberry sauce

4 ounces French dressing

1 package dry onion soup mix

Mix sauce, dressing and dry soup mix. Pour over chicken in baking dish. Bake one hour in 325- to 350-degree oven. Or, cook in a slow cooker several hours until done.

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Goodrich writes a weekly column for the Enid News & Eagle​. Send your comments to: Peggy Goodrich, Food For Thought, P.O. Box 1192, Enid, OK 73702.
 

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