Think back to "Contagion" and what a distant reality that seemed to be.
The last few years, mass media has tossed us all into a spin cycle from hell. From eating Tide Pods, to David Dao, to fidget spinners, Rogan talking about aliens, anti-vaxxers, flat-earthers, mounting conspiracy theories abound.
Anxiety is the new norm, and fear based media have preyed upon our tendencies to keep so many dead locked in to this insanity. But this virus is something far beyond anything we have seen in our generation. It is gold for fear based media, for those with no conscience, for those with power to get vaccinated early and watch the world burn.
I grew up in extreme fear, crippling anxiety that only grew worse over time. I fed those fears with drugs, alcohol, sex, food, media, you name it, I wanted it. I continued on this path for about 9 years until I had a mental breakdown (about a year ago).
I was terrified of the world I was living in, lost trust for every person around me, and felt so much regret for my life. I honestly lost my desire to live. But I knew I had to stay alive for my parents, my sister, my family, those whom I hadn't totally lost trust for.
So I got up everyday a little better than the day before, shedding one part of myself that I knew was hurting me. It started with deleting the Facebook app off my phone. Getting away from the spin cycle, removing myself from the exposure.
After a couple months, I began to realize how beneficial my decision was. Paranoia and fear diminished, while I saw new space open for me to explore. I was freed from suffocation. I was able to prioritize my needs by getting away from all that intensified my condition. Get back to myself and rediscover old passions, art, writing, content creation.
Over the last several weeks, I went through the darkest trauma of my life. Everything burned to the ground, but it was the push I needed to enter recovery and step onto a new path in my life.
So why am I telling you this story?
Because my whole world was rocked and suddenly ended by a series of horrible and unfair events.
Different to any other time in my life, I have reacted to this trauma with sincere gratitude and understanding.
I have been practicing meditation, yoga, drawing again, writing, blogging, building my own business, praying for everybody in my life that I ever hurt, or who hurt me.
Connecting the spirituality of it all, the causation, the greater understanding... has provided true freedom and solace in the darkness.
While I understand we are all different, I hope to use the strength and knowledge I have acquired over this last year to share with those suffering now. To offer space and validation for those not sure what to do.
I am a story-teller at heart, so I like to use my experiences to help others understand the world around us.
Right now, the most important thing is to not allow your fears to overwhelm you.
It's okay to be scared. I'm definitely scared! But that is why I am reaching out to people to talk about this, to meditate, to stay calm and remind each other of all the goodness that still remains.
I am listening to credible sources, and ignoring the rest of the noise. There are political, economic, sociological, psychological, spiritual connections to all of this. But if anything has ever been more clear to me, it is that right now we need to stop. Right now we need to listen to the world around us, NOT get wrapped up into the divisions, be intelligent, compassionate, and non-judgmental over why this is happening but THAT this is happening.
I have wept tears in my room for all of the division in the world since I was a little girl. Poverty, war, hatred, fear mongering have been so common place, simply wanting a different world seemed impossible, short sighted, dim, naive.
If there has ever been a time to come together, forget the small, petty divisions, it is right now. We don't have time anymore to point the finger, place blame, live in fear, anger, disbelief. We have to take care of ourselves, be responsible within our own lives while also thinking about those around us who are more vulnerable. This virus won't discriminate.
This is the beginning of a new era in time. So it is time to start thinking differently.
No more fear, no more hatred, no more division, no more selfishness.
We are one human body and we have to take care of each other while also taking care of ourselves.
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If you would like to consult with Sarah on her journey or would like to collaborate with The Soup Troupe, please email firstname.lastname@example.org