Let’s begin with the facts: the coronavirus has currently infected over 2,435,876 people worldwide. Some of the most common symptoms include a dry cough and a fever. The number of cases is still increasing though possibly at a slower rate. The world is in borderline chaos trying to contain the virus. Those are the facts everyone already knows. Those are the facts that create fear within society.

There is a brighter side to all of this, however. We are already working on a vaccine and have the top scientists working on it. One is expected to be through human trials within a year. And counter/measures like social distancing are protecting the vulnerable and slowing contagion.

And there are some positive side-effects as well. Pollution levels have decreased. Humans have been coming together to support each other in birthday parades and many other creative ways. Accident and air quality-related deaths are on the decline.  People are reconnecting with loved ones to whom they wouldn’t otherwise be talking to. There is a sense of unity between people and communities that’s never been here before. I have seen students, teachers, and families learn to appreciate the things they took for granted like going to school and seeing each other and sharing a meal with friends.

With or without the virus, it can be hard to find positivity in the world today. One important thing to remember now is overcoming hard situations is what makes people stronger. Once this is all over people will appreciate the little things in life like they never have before…going to the store and feeling safe or hugging a friend or loved one that doesn’t live in your house. People will appreciate being close and going outside. People will appreciate smiling at one another in the halls rather than rushing to class. Feeling productive and making plans and having some predictable structure in life will come back and be a new kind of fun.

It’s important to look at what is positive because that’s really the best way to survive right now. Dwelling in negativity is too easy. We should challenge ourselves to look for positive things every day even if it’s just a glimmer of the light at the end of the tunnel.

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