It’s hard to believe we’ve been living with COVID-19 for more than half a year now. Do you remember earlier this year in the spring, when we saw Calgarians band together at the beginning of the pandemic? It was as if we were running on adrenaline to support one another in such bizarre and uncertain times.
We responded with kindness, positivity, and remarkable creativity. We banged pots, cheered frontline workers, had Zoom parties, and curbside concerts. We learned how to bake bread, took advice from an Instagram dog, and let our hair down.
Summer was a short reprieve from the lockdown. Warm weather meant we could find escape outdoors. Today, the return of cold weather has forced us to spend more time indoors, the amount of sunlight gets shorter every day, and there is no immediate end to these strange times in sight. Our “mental health buckets” are depleted, yet we have a long way to go.
The exhaustion many of us feel is a normal part of a crisis response. It will get better. We will get through this if we respond with kindness. Get back to checking-in on your neighbours, your family members, and friends. If you’re able, shovel a stranger’s sidewalk or help buy groceries for someone on your block. If you are looking for a fun winter activity, consider taking up cross-country skiing. It is one of my favourite winter sports and there are many places both in Calgary and outside of the city to ski.
Be kind to yourself. Recognize that life is different right now. Expect less from yourself. Recognize grief. Focus on important relationships. Be gentle with each other. Find joy in the small things. Lastly, we can and must build back better.
Be kind. Be kind. Be kind.
Ward 7 – Councillor Druh Farrell proudly serves the following Communities: Balmoral, Banff Trail, Briar Hill, Capitol Hill, Chinatown, Crescent Heights, Downtown East Village, Eau Claire, Hillhurst, Hounsfield Heights-Briar Hill, Montgomery, Mount Pleasant, Mountview, Parkdale, Point McKay, Rosedale, St. Andrew Heights, Sunnyside, Tuxedo Park, University District, University Heights, West Hillhurst, Winston Heights-Mountview