When our staff gathered virtually this week for our Monday morning meeting, we reflected on the extraordinary events of the previous weeks. Together, we talked about how staff and participants are dealing with these trying times. Our thoughts and reactions included shock, disbelief, and fear of the future.
Why is this happening in our country?
Why are people so angry?
What will happen next?
Many feel saddened and fearful hearing daily reports of deaths due to COVID-19 and the recent violence and hatred attacking the foundations of our democracy. The news has overwhelmed many people’s hopes for the fresh starts and new beginnings that often accompany the New Year. Instead more worries and concerns are added to our already strained lives.
At Independent Futures, we are mindful of participants, their families, and our staff as we all try to navigate these chaotic times. Our feelings of disbelief and fear are real and valid.
But how do we pivot from fear to courage? Can we choose to be hopeful?
Our Next Steps Forward
While the times we live in are stressful, we can choose to take care of ourselves and our loved ones. Individually, we can reach out to family, focus on self-care by listening to what our bodies need, and make choices that will keep us safe from the virus and violence.
As a community, we can have conversations and be open to new ideas. We can choose to be tolerant of different views, and choose to be brave and open. We can chart new courses with new perspectives. We can continue to create opportunities for individuals with disabilities to live full lives in their communities.
Together, we have strength.
Together, we can choose hope.
Together, we can work towards a more strong, equitable, and collaborative community.