There’s been no zombie apocalypse. Good job, humans!

When last seen, the Statue of Liberty looked a lot better than prophesied in Planet of the Apes.

A couple days ago, a friend of mine was reporting on an emergency room visit at a nearby hospital. To cope with the unprecedented (don’t you hate that word now?) numbers of people being seen, the hospital was running concurrent triage areas, one for Covid patients and one for everyone else. They’d called in a host of available doctors with all kinds of specialties to staff the required emergency shifts. The friend reported the presence of a gynecologist, a podiatrist… and others whose specialties I can’t remember. The doctors, all kinds of doctors, are at the emergency room 24/7. It’s all hands on deck.

By the next morning, it struck me what an amazing thing that is: all hands on deck. And hands showing up.

And not just doctors. Nurses. Healthcare staff in general. Bus drivers. Teachers. Retail staff. Auto mechanics. IT workers. Massage therapists. Lab technicians. Gallery owners. Helpful aunties. Friends of friends. Even Jason, the guy that repairs transmitters for PBS on remote, mountainous locations around the state is still doing his thing, making sure we have access to Masterpiece Theater. (Just saw an Instagram post about that. Go, Jason!) People. All kinds of people. They get up in the morning. They show up. They’re on deck when needed. Over and over and over.

Yes, I know folks are “quitting their jobs in record numbers”. Peruse the newspapers and you’d think no one was at work anywhere.

But what do I actually see?

I see airport staff at their podium patiently explaining to the 70th person that day about regulations. I see parents turn to answer a child’s question when they’d really rather run screaming from the room yelling “I can’t do it anymoooooooore!!!” I see food on the grocery store shelves. I see hospitals treating sick people. I see lights in my house because the electricity is on. I see people arguing on tv over politics because our government is still extant.

Has it occurred to anyone that all the dystopian sci-fi scenarios of world wide social, economic and political collapse have NOT occurred?

Think about it. Humans have endured a global pandemic for almost two years – a pandemic with no end in sight. And we’re still here. Most things function. Sure, not to the level of our entitled, modern-age expectations. But, oh people, it could be SO much worse.

Storytellers have been offering up dystopian visions of this kind of predicament since storytelling began. But guess what?

No Mad Max driving through the desert wastelands near my neighborhood. No zombie apocalypse. No nuclear holocaust. Humans haven’t ceded hegemony to more humble species. No alien invasion. Wait, we probably can’t take credit for that not happening… But still, we’re not running around with guns, shooting people to keep our stash of food and family safe. You can still have a vacation, get cash from an ATM or order a pizza and have it delivered right to your home. Has anyone stopped to consider how excruciatingly normal that is???

Despite the relentless pressures (and there are many and they are fierce) that humans have faced and are facing, we have generally kept our shit together. The fabric of society has not unraveled. And if you think I’m being overly optimistic, spend a little time reading The Stand.

Yes, I know… your elective surgery has been delayed and you can’t get a dentist appointment sooner than six months from now. And your neighborhood diner is shut down four nights a week because they can’t get enough staff to work. (Let’s not get into whether it’s even worth working for minimum wage. We won’t go there right now.) And shipping is backed up at international ports. And flights get canceled left and right. And casual sex is a thing of the past. And just when you think your kids are going back to school a new variant sends them home again. And, and, and.

But I’m telling you. It. Could. Be. SO. MUCH. Worse.

Do you think that for one minute, a person from the middle ages or even the early 20th century wouldn’t readily switch pandemics with you?

You think you have it bad with all those confusing sources of information… My only source of information is the illiterate peasant next door, the itinerant peddler or my local clergyman! And come to think of it, that peddler stopped coming by.

Or You’re tired of seeing people on a computer screen? What’s a computer screen? You can talk with and see family thousands of miles away from you? And hear they are alright?!?!? Oooooweee, that’s sure terrible.

Honestly, I could do with a bit less whinging and a bit more recognition that despite inconveniences and delay, we are basically functioning as a society and have been for the last two years. Do you realize that we’ve been able to financially sustain thousands – no, millions! – of people through government, private and family/friend assistance in the face of a worldwide pandemic?!?!! Not just in this country but in MOST countries around the world. That is simply amazing.

You know, if you spend your time only pointing out what someone is doing wrong, they lose all motivation to do anything right. What’s the point? All I get is criticism no matter what I do! Why bother doing the right thing?!?!

So this is my moment to shout Hooray for us humans! Kudos to all! Well done! Keep it up! Let’s keep those social, economic and political systems that allow us to (mostly) function in good form! Congratulations for not giving in to zombie apocalypse!

Now I don’t want to downplay that for many, many people, things are difficult. Very difficult. I know that. I just want to offer a different perspective. One that might cause you to look at everything differently – if only for a few moments. Try it. Can’t hurt. Could help!

And humans, I see you. I think you’ve done an amazing job of making it through the pandemic. I recognize that you keep showing up. You keep trying. You do your best, even when others think your best should be so much more. Screw that. You’re doing good. Keep on keepin’ on.

12 comments

  1. No one could accuse you of being a Pollyanna.
    😊 And your favorite word for 2022?

    Mine is resilience: being able to withstand or recover quickly from difficult conditions.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Way to go, Suzie 🥰🥰🥰. You are so right and have said it so incredibly!! I agree with you 💯 percent. The negativity only promotes more negativity and we HAVE done amazingly in the face of all the confusion, misinformation and unknown territory.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Suzie–how right you are.  I keep saying we have so much to be thankful
    for even though there are some things that really suck right now.  It is
    amazing to me that things like–the propane gas truck shows up at a
    neighbor’s house on a Sunday morning to fill the almost empty propane
    tank.  That happened here in Silver City today.  And the doctors and
    nurses are out there to see my brother day by day, and in a urgent
    sprint, as he is working thru a new diagnosis of an aggressive type of
    lymphoma.  All calm as he has to go to the hospital, which is like a zoo
    right now, to urgently have test after test.  I am thankful.  Love you
    and your wonderful ability to be thoughtful and write it for the rest of
    us to read.~~~Joyce

    Liked by 1 person

  4. My 30 day gratitude challenge Question Number 10: Something that made you smile today. Answer: Suzie’s Blog Post. Spot on! Joy begins with gratitude.
    Indeed, things could be sooo much worse.
    I went to high school with one of the smart folks that developed the mederna vaccine. Glad we didn’t graduate during the dark ages…..,

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I’m sorry. I disagree. A woman who’d had a heart attack here spent 36 hours in the ER because there was no bed within 200 miles. She died awaiting a bed. A friend died because his cancer surgery was postponed and postponed.
    Both of these happened because unvaccinated people are running around acting like everything is okay. Everything is NOT a okay.
    When unvaccinated people take up so many hospital beds that others, vaccinated ones, die for lack of room, it is not okay.

    Like

    • Hi Emilie. I’m sorry to hear your news. And I agree that all is not okay. I vacillate between trying to look on the bright side and containing my anger at the damage humans can cause to each other. My apologies if the post was painful to read in the context of your losses. Also, condolences.

      Liked by 1 person

      • It wasn’t painful, but it reminded me of all the losses. I am so, so sick of unvaccinated people taking up space in the hospitals when those who have been more responsible are in need of those rooms.

        Like

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