GRATITUDE DURING COVID-19
It has been a long time since my last blog. Why might you ask? I have been busy teaching Mah Jongg at The School of American Mah Jongg, editing Unlocking the Secrets of American Mah Jongg to reflect the 2020 NMJL hands, and finishing my Memoir (still working on final steps). However, I thought it was important to take a break and discuss gratitude during Covid-19.
When the school opened in January of this year, I had no idea Covid-19 would impact my business in such a positive way. It did, and I am so grateful to all that have taken my classes. You have not only fulfilled my love for teaching but also have allowed me to share my passion for American Mah Jongg with you. Being able to stay busy teaching and writing has helped me keep my mind off the “virus,” exponentially.
This historic global pandemic has and still is transforming the world before our eyes. I try my best to see this transformation as positive. I know some of you might be thinking what can be positive about this pandemic so, I ask you to ponder all the things you were able to do without masks, gloves, and disinfectants by your side pre-Covid-19. Once you have a list in your mind, choose which of the following best describes you.
Do you think:
- This pandemic stinks, I can’t go to the pool.
- I can’t see my friends.
- I walk by people as if everyone is diseased.
- I am living in fear.
Or do you think, once this is over:
- I will be more grateful when I socialize with my friends.
- I will hug and kiss my grandchildren more.
- I will say, “I love you,” more often.
- I will splash in the pool and soak up the sun with a smile on my face.
- I will pass by each stranger with a smile and say, “hello.”
The list for both can go on and on. If your thinking is more in line with the first list, I ask that you consider this; when you read both lists, which words make you feel more joyful? I am not saying this is easy or that everyone should just banish all their negative thoughts. I know I cannot! I have tough days, just like the rest.
A Sad Day
When I recently realized that one of my grandson was turning seven this month and there would be no birthday party, and for the first time in his seven years, I would not be celebrating with him, it hit me pretty hard. I was sad, and the slightest thought about those facts made my eyes tear up. I battled with sadness the entire day. I felt lonely, isolated, and depressed. None of which I usually feel. Instead, I turned my Sadness into Smiles.
Turning Sadness into Smiles
So, I turned my thoughts to what it would like the first time I saw my seven-year-old grandson and his brother after Covid-19. Thoughts of holding them in my arms, hugging them tightly, and splashing a million kisses all over their faces came to mind, and as sad as I was, those thoughts brought a huge smile to my face. You can embrace these thoughts too!
I Agree and acknowledge 100%. This pandemic is not easy! We are human, finding gratitude during Covid-19 and dealing with all these emotions are challenging and expected. And I think about those that already suffer from depression and anxiety disorders, and I pray for their strength in getting through this.
I care about you all and wish you continued health, strength, and resilience through this journey.
Debbie, the Mah Jongg Instructor