Canceled implies something was going to happen, but now it is not.
For example, “school is canceled because of heavy snow.” This is clear. School was going to take place, but now it will not because of the snow.
Small towns all over the country have canceled Memorial Day.
No parade, no floats, and not a bit of rhubarb pie. Public swimming pools are not opening. There will be limits on what you can do at the beach, in a State or National Park, and in your community.
You cannot go to Arlington National Cemetery on Memorial Day unless you have a ticket, meaning you have lost someone who is buried there. And you cannot roam around, just in, say your thoughts, and get out.
As our kids grew up, Memorial Day meant marching in our small-town parade.
They marched as part of the boy or girl scouts, and later with the marching band from the high school. Local civic organizations have floats and the fire department would bring the hook and ladder truck. Our Mayor would ride in an open top car.
This year, we will be “safer in place,” reminiscing about the “good old days.”
If we cancel the Memorial Day festival, does that mean we are canceling the celebration? Does our cancellation negate and forget those who gave the ultimate sacrifice for our country? I certainly hope not.
We can control our attitude towards this cancellation, just as we can control our attitude towards the ongoing pandemic.
I have spent the past 387 days reframing my attitude towards events that my MDD, major depressive disorder, has put in my path. The process has been long and requires much attention on my part. Depression can be very sneaky. But this process has given me tools I can use as I face COVID-19.
READ: Depression is sneakier than I thought
Cancellations are inevitable.
But when events are canceled on a national scale, it is unnerving, at best, and downright frightening for many. The thought of getting or giving the coronavirus to others has kept many at home. Even when cancellations become less frequent, people must change their attitude towards venturing out if we are to get back to “normal.”
What normal will look like when we come out of this pandemic is unknown.
How each of us reacts to the new normal can be our own decision? Many have decided not to decide, allowing themselves to be the victim in this unprecedented event. Giving up choosing is choosing. Making others responsible is a strategy many are adopting. This frees them from having to be responsible and allows them to cast aspersions on others without feeling guilty. “Oh, the world owes me a living.”
So, while the festival may have been canceled, the spirit of Memorial Day lives on.
I will observe it from a socially distant perspective. Within local restrictions on the number of people that can gather, I expect to have some family members over Monday for an outdoor hot dog roast around our fire pit.
We have spray paint to mark six-foot circles on the grass.
Being outdoors, we may forgo the masks, but many of us have them just in case. There will be hand sanitizer next to the hotdog condiments. If someone needs to go inside to visit the restroom, we have plenty of single-use paper towels, hand sanitizer, and lots of soap and water.
Older. potentially at-risk family members are not attending.
But we will take plenty of pictures (BUT NOT GROUP PICTURES) to share with those who do not venture out. While the celebration will be different, it will still be a celebration. Not only do we honor those who gave their lives for our country, we honor each other for making it through one more day of the global pandemic.
READ: I Get to Choose My Attitude
Here is hoping the cancellation of the Memorial Day festival dos not cancel your ability to celebrate.
My concealed depression is written under the alias “Depression is not my boss.” I have certifications in SMART Recovery and am a Global Career Development Facilitator.
Diagnosed with Major Depressive Disorder last year, I am sharing what I learn. If you know someone who might benefit from reading this, please share.
I always appreciate your comments.
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