Jacoby: “It’s the end of the world as we know it – and I feel fine”

It’s the end of the world as we know it – and I feel fine.

REM’s fantastic song couldn’t be more fitting to what is going on here, there and everywhere around the world. It’s certainly the end of the world as we used to know it – at least for now and the foreseeable future – and many people do feel fine.

Most people also feel fear, mostly because of the unknown. Experts and scientists and doctors are still figuring out what makes COVID-19 tick and how to stop it here, there and everywhere. Until they do, predicting what will happen next is near impossible and that is a very scary thought for all of us.

We’ve also lost control of our daily lives. We are now limited in what we can and can’t do because of the greater good. Despite statistics to the contrary, many people feel safer in a car than an airplane because they are more in control of a car than an airplane. Losing that control causes anxiety, stress and even fear in some of us – especially at 35,000 feet.

There also are important and growing financial concerns at this time, both in our own homes and big picture – everything from how will I pay the electric bill next month to will this launch the economy into another great depression?

What we know is a lot less than what we don’t know. What we do know is that what we don’t know is killing people. Hopefully, the answers are gaining ground on the questions because right now we have a lot more questions than answers.

There was a scene during a TV series I’ve been watching (Deadwind on Netflix – great show if you don’t mind subtitles) where the female police officer’s daughter is missing and they find a body down along the shore. She walks up to the body bag not knowing if her daughter is inside it and slowly begins opening the bag.

She is relieved it’s not her daughter. But she quickly comes to the realization that it is someone’s daughter. That scene reminds me of what many are going through with the Novel Coronavirus. Many of us are lucky enough to not know anyone who has passed away because of this awful disease but many other people have experienced it.

We also try to minimize its dangers by maximizing the reasons in our head why we won’t get it. It’s for the elderly – well, I’m not old. It’s for people who smoke or are overweight – well, I don’t smoke and I’m in good shape. It’s for people with pre-existing health issues – well, I’m very healthy.

But what about the elderly? What about people who are obese – many not because they choose to be? And what about people who have been sick and/or battling Diabetes for years?

And this is exactly why we are doing what we are doing. Even if you are not in one of those high-risk categories of dying from COVID-19, you can catch it and move it along to someone who is in the high risk. We are not only protecting ourselves by isolating, but protecting others who may be more vulnerable – because the person in that body bag is someone’s daughter or son or husband or father or sister …

We need to stay supportive, positive, resilient and confident. We need to stay strong for ourselves, for our family, for our neighbors and for people we will never meet. We are all in this together and together is the only way to help minimize the damage which has already passed maximum.

Since we started this with a song, let’s end with one, one a little more positive …

Little darling, it’s been a long cold lonely winter
Little darling, it feels like years since it’s been here
Here comes the sun, doo-doo-doo-doo, here comes the sun
And I say it’s all right