We have been, and still are, experiencing a collective trauma. The persistent, unending stress of working through a pandemic is weighing heavily on us as a profession and personally. We are in a high stakes moment as schools are beginning to reopen and the divisions in our country about universal masking and other public health mitigation strategies are as vast as the Grand Canyon. What is most troubling is reading the divisions happening within our own ranks. We cannot let outside forces break us. But more urgently, we must be mindful of finding common ground so that we don’t divide ourselves from within our own house.
Can we offer each other grace and space to work through the challenges that we are all facing? While we may view the pandemic from varying perspectives, what unites us is our bigger purpose, the health and wellbeing of our students and staff. I have been worried that the incivility in our society has permeated school nursing and it is heartbreaking.
My “ask” is that we find places to unite. We are far stronger on the same team than at odds with each other. We can be an example to school boards, districts, parents and state governments by sharing a message of unification based on science. We must remove the chatter and noise around us and follow the data and science as it unfolds. The lessons learned around this pandemic are growing with each passing day. It is hard to see right now because we are still in the midst of the chaos and confusion. One day soon, when we have time to see through a wide-angle lens instead of the microscope that this moment requires, we will have space to process the lessons. In the meantime we are stronger together. We can #BeRelentless, we have no other choice.
I am sharing this song as an offer of hope and encouragement as we know that our backs are up against the proverbial wall. We all need somebody to “Lean On.” Thank you Bill Withers for this gift to the world, rest in your power!