I’ve been using that phrase frequently of late to respond to friends’ questions of how I’m doing, how my kids are doing. Our family has settled into a new normal. A clear definition of that term may not be possible, yet folks do seem to understand what I mean.
A new normal – a new schedule, new boundaries for activities, new outlooks, new choices, all needing practice and consistency, all becoming a new normal.
Whether you are a caregiver or are the one receiving care, when you or I or a family or a community come to a time of crisis, often a new normal results. We are pushed as a result of that crisis to look at our habits, at our comfort (or laziness), at our needs that are not being met and formulate a new way of going about our lives. A good thing. Admittedly, this is also sometimes a painful and/or fearful process.
However, using a time of crisis to educate ourselves in the options that exist for moving forward is a healthy practice. Such an experience can open our eyes and our heart to the incredible beauty that exists within us, within our relationships, within our communities. Beauty that is the Love of God.
We are all created good. We are all created beautiful in the sight of God – inside and out. Our inside beauty consists of our truth, our voice, our compassion, our empathy – parts of us that can and often do grow and expand during a crisis.
Our inside beauty is what opens our eyes to the hope, to the Light at the end of the tunnel illuminating the end or resolution of the crisis. Hope is a wondrous thing. Hope is actually what undergirds a new normal. If we didn’t have hope, would we even attempt to create a new normal? What would be the point?
God calls us ever forward: through the crisis, through an examination of what needs to change, through the recognition that there is hope in our hearts, to that deep beauty, that steadfast and faithful Love of God.
In any crisis, we are not alone. We have options that are deeply beautiful if we are willing to see the hope that exists.