Skies Are Blue

“The way I see it, if you want the rainbow, you gotta put up with the rain!”
Dolly Parton

People ask me how I come up with the topics I write about. They are surprised when I tell them I don’t plan them. Sometimes they appear. And yesterday……a topic appeared. Literally.

We are in a dark and difficult time. Lots of rain for sure. I do not want to dismiss the severity of what we are going through.

Yesterday I had to go to the grocery store to get our family some much needed supplies. Before leaving, I spent the morning watching the news. The tough situations going on in hospitals all over the country are so very difficult to process. I gathered myself to focus on what had to be done. I prepared for the trip like all of us have to do now. I never thought I would ever have to don a mask and gloves to go in to a grocery store in this great country. It’s hard to comprehend how our lives have changed.
The grocery store was eerily quiet. People pushing their carts away from one another and trying not to even look at one another in the eye. It was an experience none of us ever thought we would live through.

I drove home with a sinking, depressed feeling inside me. I navigated through almost empty streets in a town that normally would be bustling at that time of day. The sky turned grey and a soft rain started to fall. So did my mood.

It’s been a hard month to remain in a positive frame of mind. Most of us are not even on the front lines of this battle. I thought again of our healthcare professionals. The true heroes that have sacrificed way more than us simply going to the store…… I thought of the families that have lost loved ones.

Returning home, I turned the corner to my street. Suddenly there was the most amazing rainbow I had ever seen. I stopped and took the picture above.
I know it sounds sappy and there is the “Somewhere Over The Rainbow” analogy….but what struck me in that instant was this.
We are going to get through this.
There are better days ahead…..without question.
We are going to come out on the other side.

When we do though, what does the other side of the rainbow look like? What will change? What am I going to look at in a different way? How have I changed…..?

Here are just a few things that will be different for me.
First off the obvious one.
I’ll forever look at doctors, nurses, first responders and scientists as the true heroes of society. Not athletes or politicians.
Some smaller more subtle things…..
I’ll cherish hugging my family members way more now.
I’ll remember to enjoy both the good times and bad with my teammates.
I’ll truly listen to my son after I ask him how his day at school was.
My back won’t hurt as much after bus trips.
I’ll never complain about being bored.
I’ll never take a good toast for granted…..
I’ll keep doing Yoga…..
I’ll remember the importance of a good firm handshake. When I coach in front of fans again I’ll enjoy the game as much as they do…..
There are so many things that will be different for me. But different will be better. We can learn and grow from this experience. We can learn to appreciate what we may now take for granted.

I asked my wife Kim what she will cherish when things return to normal, and I loved what she told me.
She said, “Kerry, I take the dogs for a walk and when we see other people with their dogs, they move over to the other side of the street. Our dogs don’t understand why we can’t go say hello……I want to be able to see the dogs touch noses again and say hello…..”

I’m pretty sure we all want that.

To touch noses again on the other side of the rainbow……..where skies are blue.

Happy Easter Weekend everyone!