I’ve seen a lot of people, myself included, refer to these current times as our “new normal”. I had a friend post the very true sentiment that this is essentially saying that anything about this is normal. It’s not. The truth is our “new normal” is coming whenever this is all over.
Talking to my friends during a virtual happy hour I compared it to a scene in Wizard of Oz. The one where the munchkins slowly creep out to see if the coast is clear after the house fell on the wicked witch. They were cautious and we will be as well.
There’s not going to be an arbitrary date when everything reopens. Some people will go back to work sooner than others. Some businesses will reopen faster than others. Some businesses won’t reopen at all.
We’ll have all (unless you’re an essential worker) been home for months. Working in an office will feel strange for a little while. Going out to bars, restaurants, concerts, etc won’t feel comfortable right away. Traveling anywhere may feel distressing.
Even when we can go outside, there is chance that restrictions will still be in place for a while. Restaurant and bars at half capacity. Offices working in shifts and temperature checks. Spectator events like concerts and sports games delaying their restart.
There’s the people who are normally in our lives that we haven’t seen this entire time. Whether it’s friends or family, that first time we see each other will be powerful. We’ll have a greater appreciation for them because we know what it’s like to not be able to be with them.
The world could not be the same as we left it. Jobs were lost. Lives were lost. Time was lost. This will be the new normal we need to prepare for. Let’s make sure to remember these not normal times while we do that.