Interdependent Web: I cannot gather with loved ones

Interdependent Web: I cannot gather with loved ones

A weekly roundup of blogs and other user-generated web content about Unitarian Universalism


I cannot gather with loved ones

In a column about his father’s recent death, Daniel Kanter writes, “I can’t stop touching my face. I know the recommendations, but you can’t wipe away tears without your hands unless you awkwardly use your shoulder and that is getting old.”

To remember [my father’s] life and grieve his death in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic means that we will have to be satisfied with the gentle arms of embrace of those already in our households and the digital messages of love we receive from those who can’t travel and can’t stop in. (The Dallas Morning News, March 20)

Diana McLean has most of the symptoms of COVID-19. There are not enough tests, so she is self-isolating; her son keeps to his side of the house, and her partner waits in similar solitude in a neighboring state.

I am certainly not alone in this. That’s why I am sharing my story: not because it’s special, but precisely because it isn’t. I’ve heard worse stories from people I know. I am lucky that so far, I only feel like I have a bad cold, and in fact that may be all I have. My partner and son have no symptoms, as of this writing. I hope that will remain the case. (Poetic Justice, March 21)

Adam Lee’s experience mirrors that of many people—anxious, staying home, waiting for something we can neither see nor predict.

In my own family, we’ve stopped dining out and curtailed our travel plans, and the Unitarian Universalist church we attend has switched to online-only. In just the last few days, life has assumed an eerie calm: peaceful, but with distant clouds of anxiety on the horizon, as if we’re waiting for an invading army or for a disaster to strike. . . . [The] best thing we can do is stay home. It’s not a punishment, but a collective gesture of compassion for the most vulnerable. (Daylight Atheism, March 18)

Advisors to the president

Amy Petrie Shaw shares a prose poem which begins,

Dear Mister President, I know
That being a leader is hard these days
And so I wanted to share
Exactly what it was you should have said (Facebook, March 26)

Trump predicted that pews would be full for Easter services; Jake Morrill disagrees.

This Easter, in fact, the churches will be empty. And the tomb will be empty.

And the joy and freedom of Love will be unleashed the world over, in the hearts of all those willing to make hard personal choices, to sacrifice and even suffer if it would do something that could help just one neighbor.

This Easter, continuing to give ourselves to each other, staying home even when it’s not easy (or, for first responders or healthcare workers, showing up for each other even when it’s not easy), far-flung members of the Body will celebrate and demonstrate the triumph of selfless, all-conquering love. (The Salt Collective, March 25)

Patterns, habits, and practices

Amidst the swirling chaos of coronavirus, I am grateful for Doug Muder’s ability to distill complicated information into simple concepts—such as this concise summary of the economic challenges we face.

There are basically two problems, or rather one problem relating to two kinds of entities: people and businesses. How do they survive until things start up again? (The Weekly Sift, March 23)

Carl Gregg suggests spiritual practices for moving through this pandemic with less anxiety.

[I]f you are finding yourself spending too much time in a ratcheted up “red” Reactive Mode, take a deep breath:in…andout. Take another one. Offer yourself some gentleness, kindness, and compassion. You’ve been going through a lot. We’ve been going through a lot. (Carl Gregg, March 26)

Noticing how often people refer to alcohol as a means of coping with coronavirus-related stress, Jordinn Nelson Long urges us to imagine beyond the borders of this crisis.

[As] someone who loves you, and who loves community, and who believes that the best that we can be together is awesome and in every moment worth fighting for, I am now pleading with you.

Not about quarantine. Not about coronavirus.

About establishing the kind of patterns, in this moment of shift, that are going to pave the way for the kind of life you want to be living six months from now. (Facebook, March 26)

Dan Harper offers practical advice for those who suddenly find themselves needing to look good on camera. (Yet Another Unitarian Universalist, March 20)