Yesterday I had the privilege of having an on-air conversation with Yona Lunsky as part of the 'Let's Talk' series hosted by the National Alliance for Direct Support Professionals. The topic was essentially looking forward and past the pandemic. This was based on an article that Dr. Lunsky wrote for the International Journal for Direct Support Professionals. In that article, she considers all that we have lost over the past year, the many thefts of COVID and suggest we notice and acknowledge the losses and give space to the traumas that come with them.
It was such a good conversation that I carried parts of it into my afternoon and evening. I was thinking really intensely about the losses I have felt once COVID shut me in. There are the obvious ones of course but the profound sense of loss was something else, something different. I realized it as I was turning on Netflix. I was tired of being the passive recipient of someone else's storytelling. I am a storyteller. My whole approach to public speaking and training is to tell stories. This blog has existed because of the stories I encountered as I went about my business.
I have no stories.
I have nothing to tell.
I have nothing to share.
Ah, that's the loss that I feel so keenly. I go out into a world where people are staying apart, staying away. I go into interactions with people wearing masks and visors. I speak only when spoken to by a clerk or shop assistant. Gone are the spontaneous moments that give me insight into a moment or an idea.
Here I sit in front of a computer screen with nothing to say, or more accurately, with no story to make what I have to say engaging.
I am lucky that I get to have conversations like the one with Dr. Lunsky and the folks at the NADSP, those give me a way to feel that I'm still participating in my world.
I want the new normal, whatever it is, to tell me a story that I can bring back here to you.
I've missed you.