I woke at my normal time – 6:15 a.m. – on March 18.
I drove to school on my normal route.
I walked through the front doors of the school with my normal smile on my face and hope in my heart.
That’s where my normal turned into “lamron” – backwards normal – where up seems down and left seems right and nothing seems the same.
In one day, I went from being a classroom teacher, giving high fives to students at my classroom door, to being an e-learning teacher giving virtual fist bumps through Google Classroom.
I bet your normal has turned into “lamron,” too.
Pandemics can do that to us.
As we find our way from the “lamron” to a new normal, remember that in small ways we are in solidarity …
- with the mamí and abuelo and niños who are fleeing the “lamron” of El Salvador for a better life in America.
- with the fourth-grader who is fleeing the “lamron” of hunger because her mom lost a job and the ways and means to provide for the family.
- with each other.
We can see the world a little more clearly when we can see it through someone else’s eyes.
We can feel the world a little more deeply when we can feel it with someone else’s heart.
We can touch the world a little more efficaciously because seeing and feeling the world in new ways helps us touch it with our hands and walk in it with our feet in new ways too.
John Steinbeck wrote, “In every bit of honest writing in the world, there is a base theme. Try to understand people, if you understand each other, you will be kind to each other.”
“Knowing a person will never lead to hate and nearly always leads to love,” he said. “There are shorter means, many of them. There is writing promoting social change, writing punishing injustice, writing in celebration of heroism, but always the base theme. Try to understand each other.”
“Lamron” can lead to understanding. It can lead to kindness. It can lead to love.
Trevor Barton teaches fourth grade and is a member of First Baptist Church in Greenville, South Carolina.