How Resilient are we?

I’ve been thinking lately about resilience.  Much has been written about it, especially lately with the pandemic looming large in our lives. For me resilience is about my ability to accept “what is” and adapt to life’s ever-changing circumstances.   There’s a part of me that really struggles with change.   Especially when it’s imposed from the outside.  At the least I find it annoying (i.e. changes in plans), but at the worst I can feel devastated by it. 

I think with age I have come to embrace the Buddhist philosophy that impermanence is a fact of life.  Change is inevitable and any attempt to hold on to “what is” causes me to suffer. I frequently tell myself, “this too shall pass”, the good and the bad.  I also try to step away from my myopic vision and view my life from a universal perspective.  In the history of our planet earth, this moment in our lives is a microscopic dot in time.  From this vantage point, I become less attached, and can then think of these changes more as a new challenge in learning to adapt.  I find this helps me become more resilient and accepting of changes brought on by this pandemic.

Of course the more changes life throws at us such as illness, isolation, economic instability, lack of safe shelter and food, the greater the challenge it becomes to be resilient. But I have to believe that humans are capable of learning to adapt. How can we choose otherwise?