The coronavirus has certainly been devastating. Too many lives have been lost and many have been deeply impacted economically. However, there have also been tremendous gifts due to this virus.

Take the environment, for starters. Wildlife certainly isn’t complaining, and neither is the sky. How about examples of heroism. There are so many inspirational stories out there; health care practitioners working tirelessly, or delivery people and grocery store clerks putting themselves in harms way so we can have food and receive packages.

Crime is down, charitable giving is up and never before in modern history has the world been more in sync.  Yes, there’s a lot of pain and suffering, however, there’s also a lot of worthy and good stuff happening during this pandemic. It’s important to stop and remember this when the news, the social media and the incessant chatter about the gloom and doom is breathing down our neck.

Here’s another positive coronavirus contribution: we are remembering. I see it in myself. I see it in my family. I see it in my clients.

We are remembering

…how precious life is

…how vulnerable our world is and how fragile our society can be

…what is impermanent and what is permanent; what is an illusion and what is real; what is important and what is not

We are remembering

…that family, friends and community are everything.

…that strangers and strange countries are not strange at all and going through this just like you and me

…that we have far more in common than dissimilar, far more we agree on than we don’t

We are remembering

…that we don’t need so much shopping and so much stuff in our life (except for toilet paper you can never have too many rolls – we’ve learned the hard way).

…that we can live without all the distractions

…that sports, hobbies and activities, although they have their place, do not have to occupy the center of our lives

We are remembering

….that family meals are wonderful, family time is beautiful and in a house every room can be a family room (master bedroom included, like it or not).

….that the Sabbath can happen on a Saturday, on Sunday, on Monday, on Tuesday, but whenever it happens, we are remembering how important it is to slow down, sit down and rest

….and that carpool and commuting suck; not having to drive here and there and everywhere is awesome!

We are remembering

….how to read books, listen to music, play board games, cook and bake

….how to be together, sit in silence and the art of doing nothing

….that boredom is good for our soul, and our soul just needs a slower pace and quieter place to come out and play

…that relationships are not doomed by a virus, as we have learned to Zoom into one another’s lives

…and that we need each other more than we ever realized: funerals and weddings, Passover seders and Easter Sundays, they are just not meant to be experienced by video-conference

We are remembering

…just how much we appreciate the little things, loved the big things and all long for all those things that we took for granted a mere month ago.

We are remembering

…how good we had it

…how lucky we were

….how fortunate we still are

….and sooner or later, how this too shall pass and we will be back out into the world and grateful to resume our lives

Hopefully, however, when the quarantine lifts we’ll remember that this time wasn’t all bad, wasn’t without its blessings, and not without some important takeaways as we resume our lives.

When that day comes, let’s look back on this memory as a time when the world stood still, where we got real and when we all remembered to remember. So, let’s remember to remember long after this virus is gone and far beyond.

Rabbi B