March 11, 2021- Today marks the one year anniversary of the first known COVID-19 pandemic case here in Canada, and today marks the one year anniversary of the world, as we knew it, being forever altered.
The Government of Canada announced today as a national day of recognition to mark the remembrance of those who were lost to COVID-19 and those who served our nation and continue to do so with stoic professionalism.
This past year has been fraught with peril and so many challenging moments for our society. It has laid bare the challenges with wellbeing and mental health, addictions and crisis management in our communities while bringing people together in the interest of public health. It has seen ups and plenty of downs, and for many revealed the human character that binds us during a time of unyielding sadness. Days have been riddled with negativity, inaction, doom scrolling, fighting and protests, support, rallies, signs of immense caring and much more. It has run the range of human emotions and aged us all in the process.
I wrote a short column back in April of last year, or maybe five years ago, nobody knows for certain as time hasn’t meant much this past twelve months. This column talks from the standpoint of the early days of the pandemic in Canada. You can find that column here (Giving thanks and thinking about tomorrow). In that column, I expressed plenty of hopes for the “weeks” that would follow but approached the time with a great deal of trepidation and admittedly a boatload of fear for those who are most vulnerable among us.
We are at a crossroads today, and I feel more optimism now than I have since the pandemic began.
As we look to the weeks ahead and the opportunity Spring, multiple vaccine candidates, and further loosening of restrictions pose I wanted to take a moment on this solemn day to recognize those who have lost loved ones, sacrificed so greatly, and been so severely impacted both professionally and personally by this pandemic. We can never regain what we have lost, but my hope is that when the time is right we can accurately recognize this moment as a time that we in the community came together to support each other, buoyed by goodwill, and in recognition of the sacrifices made.
Much of my early years revolved around sport, and more so the game of football. Football is, to me, the ultimate team sport. It takes every skillset into account and is designed in such a way that every player is needed on the field to find success. Like this pandemic, so many laid on the line their own success, for those around them. Sacrifice, courage, and character. I truly believe we are in what I hope to be the third quarter of this game, and for once I feel we are beginning to take the lead. I don’t want to get ahead of ourselves quite yet, but life, as in sport comes with momentum shifts. The next few weeks, in my opinion, will see the momentum shift in our favour. Protect the lead, but don’t let our guard down.
Vince Lombardi said that the spirit to win and the will to excel are the things that endure. These qualities are much more important than any of the events that lead to them. COVID-19 is one such event, if we approach this phase of the game with the will, spirit, and poise that has defined the best of our nature over these past twelve months, it will see us persevere.
Let’s finish the game.
Take care, be well.