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  • Writer's pictureJohn McLachlan

Gonna Change My Way of Thinking

Omicron and the Ongoing Pandemic

Here it is, December 2021 and there the Covid-19 pandemic is still rolling along with little sign of abating. In fact, we are now on the cusp of a new variant, Omicron, taking off in an exponential spread.

It makes me wonder if this pandemic will be with us much longer than I ever anticipated. There could be multiple waves for years. If so, how do I deal with it in my own life?

I’ve lived for 60 years with no major world occurrence that affected my generally safe, easy and healthy middle-class life. Apparently, we almost blew ourselves up a few times during the Cold War, but somehow avoided it. And, even 9-11 which was an incredible shock, really didn’t affect my way of life (I’ve often thought how, had I not known it happened, all I’d have noticed was some extra security at the airport).

But now, I’m in the middle of a worldwide plague with which come many uncertainties and unknowns. I work in the performing arts world and know first-hand how it has affected performing artists (and the agents and support people). All this while, I am trying to get back into touring as a musician. That needs to be looked at if this pandemic keeps coming in waves.

Thankfully, we have the Internet which can connect all of us in at least some facsimile of face-to-face social connection. Social media is loaded with its downsides, but in general, how fortunate we are to be able to have sharing and video calls, even if we grumble about the method. Just 25 years ago a few people were just getting their first email address. I shudder to think what we’d have done then had the pandemic hit.

As a potential new wave of the pandemic arrives, I think I have to start looking at my expectations and making the best of what is available. Maybe it means giving up the hopes of touring as a musician (it would be better for climate change, anyway) and move to doing things online. It may mean working harder to keep up video connections with friends. I live on a small island as it is, so there is already a baked-in insularity to my life (which is one of the reasons I moved to a small island in the first place).

I think I need to embrace the change. Use it as a chance to discover other aspects of a creative life that would never have come had Covid-19 not reared its ugly head.

Gonna change my way of thinking
Make myself a different set of rules
Gonna put my good foot forward
And stop being influenced by fools.

Bob Dylan

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