Green Team: Challenging Times Are Ripe with the Opportunity for Change
Clearly, we are living in some of the most challenging times our generation has ever faced. Working behind the scenes or on the front lines in healthcare, we understand this challenge more than most. These are the times we attempted to prepare for, but hoped would never come.
Not only is COVID-19 wreaking havoc on our ability to perform our jobs in an already less-than-perfect healthcare system, it's wreaking havoc on pretty much every aspect of life - particularly an economy we had come to take for granted. There is no escaping it. Until a proven vaccination makes its way around our globe, the coronavirus is here to stay and will continue to stretch us in previously unimaginable ways.
Climate change scientists have warned that social disruption from rising temperatures, extreme weather patterns, and pandemics like this will be part of our new norm if we do not change. A career in healthcare and physical rehabilitation has taught me all too well that change doesn’t come easy for us humans. We take comfort in the familiar, even if professional advice says otherwise. As gloom and doom as “if we do not change” sounds, I find great hope in the words "IF" and "CHANGE" because I have found that when the stakes are high enough, humans totally show up for the challenge. "If" our lives or ways of living are threatened, our superpowers awaken and catapult us into levels of grit, stamina and ability we never dreamed were possible--allowing us to "change" in unprecedented ways!
According to climate change scientists, the Earth's luxuries that were recently just a given on an ordinary day are all at risk if we continue with life as usual. COVID-19 is giving us a collective opportunity to open our eyes, appreciate, and act to ensure ongoing access to the simplest of luxuries for generations to come. Think clean water, fresh air, nutrient-rich food, colorful autumns, vibrant green springs and summer temperatures that are conducive to outdoor play!
Until COVID-19, I wondered what it would take to energize a more urgent response to the needs of our planet. The coronavirus has blessed us with a tremendous opportunity to stop comparing and competing with one another and start cooperating. The pandemic has stopped the proverbial clock from ticking so that we can take stock of what is going on around us and stand unified across the globe through this shared experience.
Since COVID-19 arrived in our lives, we have begun living and achieving the impossible. "If we change" is a language of our past. "Because we are changing," there is hope for our future. "Because we are changing," there is the possibility we can avert future pandemics. "Because we are changing," future generations have a better chance of living on a planet that ensures their next breath, an abundance of toilet paper, and access to thriving green spaces!
Challenging times are ripe with opportunity for change! At times like these, I commit to doing all that I can to make full use of my superpowers to meet current challenges and to ride the waves of change before us so that we come out better on the other side. Will you do the same?
We are in this together and together we are better!
-Kelly DeMarco, Green Team Leader and Horizon Rehab Manager
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