I have been healthy my 76 years (that is I have had no major illnesses or broken bones).
However, this past month I have been sick and for a few days painfully ill. Nothing too serious that I cannot recover, and I do not have the coronavirus, thankfully.
This health episode reminded me that I have always taken my good health for granted. I think that is the optimists view of life. It is easy to take the good times for granted and normal to do so. It reminds me that we should be grateful for the good times.
At the same time, changes in life happen and we must re-evaluate our world of normal. Then it is time to cope with new challenges and be thankful we can move on with the personal events in our life.
Pondering the meaning of normal brought me to the reality of the current challenges to our world during the coronavirus pandemic.
We hear a lot these days about how our world will change after the coronavirus pandemic. We will have a new normal to get used to. Fighting this pandemic has been compared to fighting a war.
When I was a child, we were still close enough to World War II that my parents talked about it a lot. Every family in every town or city had someone in harm’s way, no home went without sacrifice or loss.
Life in the United States was no longer normal. My parents told me of everything being rationed. You were only allowed to buy a certain amount of milk, bread, toilet tissue, and gasoline. Everything was restricted for the war effort. People today forget what our grandparents and great grandparents went through and how their definition of normal changed during World War II.
Personal sacrifices fighting the coronavirus pandemic of 2020 is nothing like the sacrifices to a normal life that the people of this country experienced 80 years ago.
The post war transition had its challenges, but gradually a new comfortable normal was established.
The problem is we now have several generations of people removed by time from remembering the sacrifices of a dark and uncertain time in our nation’s history.
We will overcome this pandemic and eventually transition to a new and comfortable post-pandemic normal. We can just never take normal for granted. We need to be thankful for what we have every day. (Helmick is a Serve Daily contributor.)