Waiting to Exhale: It’s Okay Not to Be Okay – Part 3

 by Lynne Prescott, CCLS


My littlest angel, my granddaughter Emily Faith, is seven years old.  For the almost three years she has been in school, she has known nothing but change.  One week she may be in the classroom, the next week she is doing remote learning.  She wears a mask when she’s in the classroom.  Her desk is socially distanced from her classmates.  Emily has never known anything different, and she goes about her little world every day knowing that this is just the way things are. 

When it’s time to play, she plays.  She doesn’t think about HOW she plays – – she just does it.  And she is happy in her play because she makes it work for her.  We may think it’s sad that Emily’s first experiences in life have occurred during the pandemic, but trust me, Emily isn’t sad.  She’s not literally or figuratively holding her breath for any reason.  Emily doesn’t have any reason to believe that she is stuck, or that her life has been put on hold. 

She is, to put it simply, LIVING. She very likely doesn’t recall that there was a different way of life before COVID, and even if she does, she has decided to not let it stop her from growing and being who she is.  We can learn a lot from kids like Emily.  To her, this IS the world.  This IS life. 


COVID has turned the world and life upside down. So, we either choose to hang upside down and struggle with that perspective, or we can adjust the orientation. We do it every day. For instance, what do you do when you get a document or photo that’s wonky? Do you pick up your monitor, laptop, or tablet and turn it so that you can better view the document or picture? Of course not!  We have a rotate button.  How tedious would it be to constantly have to tilt our heads and view things from an incorrect orientation?

Reset your personal orientation so that your view isn’t skewed. Use your own “Rotate” feature to change your approach, simplify your life, and restore some control to your world.  Use it so that what you’re looking at is oriented properly and you can work with it. Perspective is everything!

It’s okay to have a positive and optimistic outlook and feel sad at the same time. We can feel sad and be grieving and still look forward to the future.  Both of those are necessary for a healthy outlook and a sense of well-being.  But you have to stop holding your breath.  You must exhale.  Breathe!

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