With all due respect, all of us are being asked to do a lot more right now than sit on the couch.
I’ve seen the perspective pieces about how our grandparents were called to war and how past high school seniors took their senior trips to Vietnam and how ‘‘all” we’re being asked to do today is sit on the couch and watch TV.
But with every bit of respect to those who’ve gone before us and fought for us, we’re being asked to do so much more than that.
Truck drivers are being asked to bring us supplies that have been depleted, some of them, by our own greed or panic.
Moms of young children are being asked to dig deep and find new levels of patience and creativity.
Teens are being asked to put almost every aspect of their normal lives on hold.
Employees are being asked to do jobs in different ways or not to do them at all.
Brides are being asked to recast their dreams of what their wedding days would look like.
Grandparents are being asked to only see their grandchildren through windows and screens.
Adult children are being asked to keep fragile parents safe by keeping their distance.
Business owners are being asked to either figure out how to stay open or how, eventually, to re-open.
Caregivers are being asked to continue giving care without respite.
High school and college seniors are being asked to let go of lasts they never got to experience in the first place.
Students are being asked to keep learning.
Teachers are being asked to keep teaching.
And on it goes, what we‘re being asked to do (and not do).
We are not being sent off to war, and we are deeply mindful of that and grateful for it. We salute and honor every one of our veterans. They are heroes.
But we—all of us—are surely being asked to fight.
We’re being asked to fight selfishness and self-centeredness. We’re being asked to fight fear. We’re being asked to fight annoyance and impatience and anger and irritation.
We are being asked to give up a tiny sliver of freedom—freedom of normalcy, of social interaction, of movement, of some ease—to protect the freedoms won for us by those who’ve gone before us.
On or off the couch, may we do it well. May we make them proud.