Splendid Reintegration by @EdenBaylee
March 2020, two months after Authors Electric welcomed me, I wrote a blog called “Splendid Isolation.” It was named after Warren Zevon's song about the difference between being alone and being lonely. Feel free to hop over and read it if you haven't already.
During that time, much of the world was trying to figure out how to combat the Corona virus. In Canada, we were doing the same. Even though there was a lot to deal with—closing borders, face coverings, shutting down businesses, our leaders worked together and appeared to be taking the right steps forward. There was so much to learn.
The pandemic also produced an explosion of neologisms. Phrases and words like: self-isolation; shelter in place; social distancing; flatten the curve; curb-side pickup became part of everyday news feeds and conversation. New acronyms cropped up too—PPE, WHO, Covid-19, HCQ.
We were more digitally connected than ever before—in a way we weren’t during the SARS outbreak in 2002. I zoomed daily with a girlfriend for a drink, did my workouts via Zoom, and took a month-long online French course. Instant access via social media had become an integral part of our lives, but I didn't want this type of existence forever. I doubt anyone did.
When the pandemic began last year, I never thought we'd be in this position 14+ months later. Some parts of the world were fortunate enough to have never experienced lengthy lockdowns, the politicizing of face masks, curfews, and everything else that took us away from life as we once knew it.
Canada has experienced all of the above, with some parts of the country faring better than others. Ontario is the most populated province, and I live in the most populated city in it—Toronto. In terms of how we managed as a province, it's been a fail. I don't want to bore you with Canadian politics, so I'll refrain from ranting about how poorly our government has handled this crisis.
Instead, let me look at the potential of splendid reintegration.
As at this writing, we are still under a "stay at home" order. Come June 2nd, we hope there won't be another lockdown. We are vaccinating the population en masse because we finally have the vaccinations. One of the biggest learnings from this pandemic has been that we must have domestic vaccine production in the future. A program has been put in place for the next time we experience something like this. I sure as hell hope there isn't a next time, but it's the right thing to prepare for it.
Time is what we have all lost during this pandemic, and some have lost so much more than that. Some have lost their lives, and it's a tragedy. In many parts of the world, this tragedy continues.
Reintegration into society is what we all want. I've had one shot of AstraZeneca, and I'm scheduled for my second one July 6th. With all the controversy that has swirled around AZ, there is now an overflow of it that must be used up before it expires.
I have no hesitation in taking it, even though the first jab was not particularly pleasant.
From the beginning, I've tried to keep myself connected. At times, it's been painful, but I could not have done it differently. I'm one of those people who needs to know—even when the news is bad. Given this, my hope is the news will be more positive going forward. There is still so much uncertainty, but I know that once I get my second shot, I will feel 100% better. It's science and psychology rolled into one.
For those still fighting, please take care of yourselves and those closest to you.
May we all live to enjoy another trip around the sun. Be well, everyone.