The coronavirus has brought out the best and worst of us all. At times, it may be hard to feel another’s anger without blowing a fuse. That might require stepping back without matching the level of irritation with retaliation. Even friends can get in each other’s way. Emily hadn’t realized that she had disturbed her good friend, Jenny. So the next time that Emily met Jenny, she cracked a joke and the two of them laughed. Jenny exclaimed: “You made me glad before my mad was used up!” Using a bit of humor can bridge differences and allows time for each to diffuse. Likewise, when the situation calls for it, excusing the other also lifts the dissonance between people. So we tell ourselves: “There are many ways to get the job done.” Or “She has a lot on her mind these days.” Peace is worth the benefit of the doubt.
By Ruth Feeney, OSB