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Catch up on more of Anne's chat on the Ignite YouTube channel...

Ignite Compassion Blog #1  


“All boats rise with the tide!”


What a time we’ve found ourselves in. Empty shelves, cancelled flights, home working, self-isolating, social distancing.


It feels like some post-apocalyptic horror movie and we’re still in the opening credits. I think it’s why we’re so scared – we just don’t know what will happen next.


Being overly optimistic about most things, I’ll admit it has taken me all week to get the current crisis in line with my resilient, positive narrative. Crying in the supermarket was my low point. Folk with two full trolleys was my tipping point. Not much being left for those arriving late to the party because they weren’t as financially prepared as others broke my heart a little bit.


I understand we’re all scared – but I couldn’t fathom why people would leave so little for others. If we want the people who work in the toilet paper factories, drive the lorries and stack the shelves to keep turning up at work why would we leave them without paracetamol and nappies for their kids?


But now I’m on the other side of chapter 1 of this story we’ve just begun, I decided my only way through was to find some positive spins. To create that place I’ve been looking for all over the internet that was going to calm me down. The voice that would bring some clarity. The change of perspective I needed to rally my dialogue and move myself and the people around me forward.


I'm beginning to wonder if Caronavorus could actually be a teacher for us all? A reminder that we should change some of the ways we've been showing up in the world? Could this global pandemic be the bringer of increased kindness and compassion for those we live among? The thing that reminds us all that we do not inhabit this planet alone.


We can’t beat this happening by ourselves. We’re going to need to rely on each other to do the things we’ve all been told to do. To stay home when we’re sick, to wash our hands, to sneeze and cough into hankies.


If we can all agree everyone needs to follow these simple instructions – then we need to agree to something else too!


We need to leave enough toilet roll, soap & canned food for the person behind us. For the folk who don’t get paid until next week. We need to ensure there is enough for everyone – because quite simply – together we are stronger.


As a proud river dweller my friends and I are often heard uttering the words ‘All Boats Rise with the Tide’ – and never has a sentiment been truer than now.


We can only do this united. Social status, profession, education, finances, age, language, nationality or creed – none of it matters just now. We’re all in the exact same boat. And together we will sink or rise.


This week as you walk back out into the world remember that it’s not just about you protecting yourself and your loved ones. It’s about your neighbour, about the person who sat on that seat before you, about the barista who made your coffee, the person who cleaned that handrail or the petrol pump handle. Its about the scientists who have worked all weekend, the people keeping our shops open, electricity functioning and water running. It’s about our beloved NHS and all the people ready to help us.


In the face of Coronavirus we are all of a sudden equal to every other person in our street, town, city, country & planet.


So, my new, less panicked, slightly more positive demeanour is gleamed from the fact that while we still have some way to go, I am hopeful for the compassion we will all witness, feel and know on the other side.


Anne Hughes

16 March 2020

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