Introduction: Apology if Offensive . . .
How you might feel could be greatly affected by your day-to-day Pandemic
I could easily understand how some in various Pandemic situations could find this post off-putting or even offensive. I do apologize if that is how it feels to you. I know people of the younger generation who have been quarantined with elementary or younger age children, sometimes in a (to me) very small space. Being quarantined alone or as a couple in a variety of ways is one thing. Being quarantined with two young children to me is quite a bigger challenge. Teenagers too, I imagine for different reasons. I read but don't have much even second-hand knowledge.
I try to be very careful / "never" say "I know how you feel" because, really, no one else can really know you feel. IMO. And because it is hypothetical I really don't completely even know how I would feel. But I'm pretty darn sure I would be a lot more stressed and unhappy than the way it is for me now!
So does the Pandemic present you "with a rare opportunity?"
The other end of the Pandemic spectrum finds people who were already living alone now completely isolated with loneliness being the painful major concern. ☹
I consider myself a socially-motivated introvert in that I can happily spend the work day physically by myself as I have done for quite awhile. I was WFH and working virtually before either of those things were "cool" and I initially even had to get an OK to do so. (Many years ago.) Now, of course, there has been and I predict will continue to be a big push for corporate employees to increasingly do so full or regular portion of their work month.
Rightly or wrongly, I am currently thinking this way
Decades ago I vaguely remember a time in my life that a bunch of things had come together in a good way. I don't remember how old I was and it could have been a situation I knew was not long-term. But I do remember thinking even then that I would look back with fondness on this particular time in my life. But, as I read recently but can't find the quote, in general, we don't actually know we're going through "the good old days" until after, perhaps way after, they are gone!
Depending on how old you are, you might / probably remember exactly where you were and how you heard about .... Pearl Harbor ... JFK ... MLK ... 9/11. These events, sadly, can be highly memorable. So will many going through the Pandemic.
"After and Same"
Some (good) things may go back to the way they were before. In the US and I imagine elsewhere the public education structure before college is well-established with teachers, schools, etc. etc. Many children, I understand, now realize even if they didn't before how much they value school. I'm not saying it won't change some, but I certainly believe, feel and hope that children will go back to school - safely - happily - and soon / at least in 2021!
"After & Different"
At least since the time I read Future Shock by Alvin Toffler and perhaps before that I was interested in reading "futurists," as opposed to actual science fiction - only a little for me. Partially from what people are writing & saying already and partially just from working in what for many is a new challenge (WFH / "remote,") it is my opinion that some things won't go back to the way they were before. Some good some bad. And also there will be things that will change meaningfully but not go away completely.
So, what will YOU do with the rest of "your" Pandemic?
Now that some of the shock has worn off and we can see "light at the end of the tunnel" (that we hope is not an oncoming train!) I think Barry's post and Martin's video about Barry's post are both worthy of some thought.
A few years ago during a time of "extended meditation" (religious services) I jotted down some personal qualities I wanted to emphasize ... more .... and / or .... less. (Personal qualities of my own that were positive and / or negative.)
If your Pandemic gives you very little ... quiet ... physical space ... emotional sustenance ... etc., if the only thing you do is begin to think a bit differently about after Pandemic is over .... well I believe just thinking about it has the potential for being helpful! You never know what might come of it.
If Pandemic has brought major life change - positive - negative - or some of each - then I figure you can't help thinking about it. And you might come up with ideas for reinforcing / augmenting the positive while coping and / or decreasing the negative. I truly wish that for you.
I encourage people to watch / listen to Martin's video
He takes a thoughtful approach on serious concerns. If your lifestyle was "unsustainable, unfulfilling or not rewarding," maybe Pandemic has been a "massive wake up call for you" ... in a good way. In which case I very much wish you well in your "After & Different" part of your post-Pandemic life!
As Barry said and may or may not be true for you personally, "As terrible as 2020 has been — and make no doubt about it, 2020 has been a terrible, anxious, death-filled year — it has also presented us with a rare opportunity."