Are We Living in a Virtual Reality?
In the past few weeks, my sense of time has shifted.
Days pass, but the sense of nothing changing gives a very awkward feeling. While we have a routine at home, it is strange to see that we live a life where we spin a wheel that does not move forward.
I am busy taking care of my health, my family, and my home. The number of activities is not small and does not stop growing.
The stress level is significant as we continue to adapt to the constant constraints of COVID-19 and the pressure of the new political environment.
So, why do I feel like a little guinea pig inside a cage?
“Our anxiety does not come from thinking about the future, but from wanting to control it.” – Kahlil Gibran
As I was observing my son play video games, I had an AHA moment. The current environment feels like I am inside a video game on level-1. As I finish the level and conquer all the tasks, I go back to level-1 again and have to do it all over again.
The sense of time, caring for our mental health, and tracking accomplishments are different.
Months have passed since the very beginning of the pandemic, but little has changed in our routines. We continue to have to be cautious at home to protect ourselves and others, wear masks, and wash our hands very diligently.
Our lives are lived mostly inside the walls of our house; the people we see are the ones who live under the same ceiling we are; meeting a minimal number of friends is a special treat.
We have a tiny number of safe activities and friends. Our enormous world has closed the doors to social life and interacting with others.
Beware and Get a Treat If You Dare!
Halloween, for example, was a unique experience. As I prepared small bags of treats to leave at the front of my house, I could see my son’s disappointment in not being able to knock at multiple doors with his friends and play all evening. My neighborhood was mostly silent, and the streets were empty. Our Halloween was quiet and uneventful this time.
What’s The Point?
As I went to bed last night, I asked myself: what is this for? What is the lesson I need to learn?
As a faithful person, I believe there is always a learning opportunity: the experiences we live – the good, but even more importantly, the bad. In my case, I am back to appreciate the semi-invisible parts of life – those little things we often take for granted: the company of our family members, a good lupus day, the beauty of a sunny afternoon during Autumn, the taste of a healthy meal, the joy of walking my dog.
For us with lupus, managing our mental state well means more sporadic flares. Controlling our emotions, for me, means fewer rashes, more energy, and less pain.
So, maybe the lesson continues to be ‘trusting the process’ and letting it go? Trusting that God is the one in control, and our role is to do the best we can, remaining peaceful and joyful at heart.
Tomorrow is another day that may look just like yesterday, but hopefully, I will see it with happier eyes and better wisdom.
“Every time you are tempted to react in the same old way, ask if you want to be a prisoner of the past or a pioneer of the future.” – Deepak Chopra
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