Covid-19 musings from HIP’s Meal Program Manager, Darcy Buendia.
Your brain can’t function in emergency mode forever. Eventually, you just become numb and a “new normal” is born.
There was a period of a few weeks in which, here at HIP, we were in emergency mode. Some programs were shuttered while others sprung up overnight. We were struggling to launch our summer meal program three months ahead of schedule. We were turning away our most experienced volunteers at a time that we were ramping up to make more meals than we ever have before.
And did you know that in the middle of this our kitchen sprung a leak and flooded? And that it was so bad that it leaked down to the floor below and flooded our storage room as well? What would normally be an emergency in and of itself, became a footnote to a greater crisis.
I bring up the flooding now because (I love pity AND…) it’s the perfect example to illustrate perspective. There are so many lessons learned from the devastation that COVID-19 has caused. One of them is our new understanding of our capacity to create change and what we are capable of in an emergency. I know that you can’t stay in emergency mode forever, and I don’t want you to. But we are by no means out of the woods. Our slowly-gained success against the virus is just the beginning. The long road ahead of us means bringing stability back to those whose greatest adversity will be a financial one.
Pick up the lessons you’ve learned and hold on to them tightly. We are transitioning to a new kind of emergency that will take patience and creativity and hard work. It may seem dire but our task, to create food security, was never an easy one. So, when it is overwhelming to look ahead, all we need to do is look back at how much we have done together. This is how we will make it through every day, no matter how long it takes.
Meal Program Manager