2 years ago today I was wrapping up the last of my California workshops and seeing clients. It had been spent seeing a client, saying my goodbyes and then hitting the road. Heading south down Route 1 along the California coast around 3:00 in the afternoon. I would see whales I would photograph the beautiful ocean in I tookke my time driving down towards Pismo Beach. Savoring each moment I was able to see that beautiful expanse of the Pacific Ocean knowing somewhere in my gut it would be a long time before I would revisit it again.
There was a whisper of rumors that at that time. Rumors about a respiratory virus that was in China could be up in Oregon but nobody was really sure. I left California with some question marks because some of the people I had stayed with had just gotten over a long respiratory illness of unknown origin and even though they were healthy while I stayed. I appeared healthy as I left. I know that viruses can in fact be symptomless.
I don’t think anyone really planned for a pandemic or this 2-year Long haul of our lives being disrupted. In fact I think we’ve been quite privileged in how our lives have sort of rolled along good or bad, overwhelmed, misunderstood, traumatized, full of Joy… We’ve had pretty uninterrupted lives. 9/11 put a wrinkle in our lives but we went right back to shopping and living life as life presented it. The election of Trump had traumatized many of us and we were working hard to not be mashed by that crazy and fight what we could. The climate deteriorated more but most people didn’t give it much thought. The population of those in poverty, below poverty and homeless exploded. Tent cities rose up in city blocks and people complained about it . The people living in tents just tried to survive. It is was bad for optics and business but nobody really thought about the causes of these lives falling or being pushed into these circumstances. For the most part we’re incredibly self-absorbed and just getting what we wanted and getting through the day.
We spent so much time shoving our grief and our trauma away so that we could just survive the grind of modern life. Navigating the glitches and triumphs of technology. The resistance to aging with all of its potions, yoga, healthy lifestyles and eating. As well as the acceptance of aging bodies that need things replaced and illnesses dealt with…. Retirement and investments… That dream house. Keeping our youth entertained as well as educated. Constantly pushing them to the top of the pile so that they are the most perfect, the smartest, most intelligent, most able, most capable, most creative to win the life game. Balancing all of this every day while just keeping our job so that we could pay the bills. We could move forward into the next day and do the exact same thing over and over. Having embodied fear to not question anything. Knowing that if we did question we would be considered negative or not a team player. We would be putting our whole life at risk families relationships friends business partners etc… Life was complicated and full and for many people. We weren’t living we were triaging 24 hours for a life we never really attained anything in.
And then a silent virus came and shut everything down. We were stuck in the deafening silence of our empty shells. Our beating hearts. All the broken dreams. The waste of time, energy and resources we put into a system that expect everything form us yet it belittled to our need for safeguards. Wrapped it in a flag and sold us a handful of magic beans about American exceptionalism. Berating those who couldn’t make it saying they were lazy, unworthy and undesirable. And they did little to prevent it from crashing down because those who had invested well saw no need to keep it going because there was nothing that they needed from the system anymore.
And as we sit here two years later with a government that is at a standstill do to political posturing. The very programs that could give us decent jobs, health care, lives that are meaningful, education that actually gived us the resources and the tools to build a better future for our youth…and the country.
The social and economic entropy is the reality of where we are right now. Although it might feel like, it is not necessarily the end. It doesn’t have to end badly. It doesn’t have to define who we are. This is the time to stop. Reflect upon what it is we really want as our futures. The thing about entropy is you can never go backwards. It never falls back to the way it was. It’s like when you drop a plate and it shatters in pieces. You might try to glue it back together but it’s never going to be the same it’s never going to be whole.
And we are never going to build it like it was we are never going to have a world that looked like it did two years ago. We might have shadows or memories. We might have remnants. We might have bits and pieces that are holdovers from that time. None of that will resurrect it back to what it was. What we need to do and is move forward into a vision of what we want not just for individuals but for the collective. No single human being lives in a vacuum. Everything that’s happening on this planet will affect every single one of us whether you are a billionaire and you can go run away to space or you’re living in the squalor of a shanty town. The effects of this catharsis has ramifications for all of us.
It’s time that we actually dealt with the water crisis, the food crisis, resources, housing, education, and the large population of people who will be migrating to livable and habitable places on this planet. These and many other things that can be grown out of this entropy. As one of the laws of the universe entropy always moves towards order and work so as we move through this we can define that order and that work we can set the direction we can set the vision. This is probably one of the most pivotal and important aspects of our evolution right now on the planet. What we do now will affect if we go towards extinction or our survival into something different.