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Planning for the Future in a Pandemic


No one knows the future. 

We like to think that we do sometimes, don’t we? 

When we make our plans, book flights, make reservations, or write on our calendars we feel like we know. 

The Covid-19 pandemic has reminded us how little we actually know about it. 

How I Believed I Knew the Future

I booked a flight at the beginning of 2020, and in my head, I was already booking other ones.

I was planning when I could reschedule my trip even as I cancelled it. I was preparing for when I could once again do so many other things that seemed to be put on pause. Because it was hard to imagine what it would be like to have everything come to a full stop. 

“Things kept getting put on pause, and slowly they rolled to full stops.”

At some point, I became tired of “rescheduling” my entire life. I didn’t know when I’d be able to go and do anything anymore and it felt like that day was moving farther into the future every time I thought I was close.

I stopped planning.

How I Was Invited to the Future

And then I received a text message from a dear friend.

It read, “I know we can’t do anything yet. But look at this restaurant! We’re going to go here. You and me. I’ll make reservations when it’s safe again and we’ll go.” 

And I instantly felt something—I wanted to plan for that day, right down to picking out what I would wear. Even though I still didn’t know the future, I needed to hope for it. I felt like I had been invited to the future.

That’s when I realized that while we never know the future, planning for it is hope. 

My Bucket List of “Agains”

I’ve begun writing a bucket list. 

“Go to a thrift store again.”

“Walk down the beach again.”

“Have a dinner party again.”

“Take a flight across the world again.”

“Get lost in a museum again.”

Over a year ago these things wouldn’t be on my bucket list. It’s a list full of “agains” that feel like “first times.” I’m planning for the future in spite of everything. 

Your Invitation to the Future

If you’re struggling to see your future right now, remember that we all are. Make your plans, text your friends and invite them to the future, and dream your dreams. 

And as we continue surviving in this pandemic, let’s make bucket lists of hope.

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