We are certainly living in interesting times, wouldn’t you agree? COVID-19 has changed the very fabric of our society and challenged our basic precepts on our economy. Our current normal wasn’t even imagined by most Americans as little as a six weeks ago, let alone all the way back to the ancient days of January 2020 as the virus quickly and covertly spread its way around the world. Which got me to thinking about living strong. What does that mean? How do we do it? And who can we help?

Imagine my daughter Emma. She lived strong. Born with cerebral palsy she faced challenges most dare not consider. He legs failed her. Her shoulders hunched over with overly active muscles. Still, she learned to walk, she straightened as best she could and she got on with the business of living life in only a way that she could.

For Emma’s first fourteen to fifteen years Emma lived particularly strong. She learned that a smile was better than a frown; a hug was better than sulking. Yes, mental illness eventually stole that from her though we can still learn a lot from her days of living strong.

Living strong is especially important for each of us now. Living strong means finding reliable news sources from which to parse current information. Living strong means reaching out to our family, friends and loved ones to make sure we don’t withdraw into ourselves. Living strong means having faith and extending forgiveness. Living strong means trusting that the good in man will continue to deliver on the promise of a better world.

Right now we all sit and hope. We hope that our families stay health and economically fit. We pray for our loved ones. We hope that somewhere soon an organization, doctor or scientist somewhere unlocks the right treatment or vaccine for this novel coronavirus. And we all hope to keep ourselves physically fit when the refrigerator calls our name each and every time we pass by.