We will get through this.
Not saying that with *CERTAINTY*. Or without fears and reservations.
With the knowledge that some of us won’t …
… that some will die …
… some who didn’t need to …
… that in the “distancing” other things will be lost … friends among them …
With the knowledge that there are those who will profit by this. Not always in monetary terms.
With the knowledge that in similar times a few swayed the many to trigger greater calamities which wracked the world, ending and ruining the lives of many more than whatever plaguing thing that had triggered it would ever have done.
Frodo didn’t get to say “Well, I’m home.” A Morgul shard remained in him, the touch of the Ring, the loss of a finger, and the certain knowledge that when push came to shove he’d failed at the ultimate.
(The legends of heroes rarely speak of the bad nights after the quest is done.)
Yet, he got through it. We’ll get through it. Even if Frodo and Sam and the rest are fiction, and we’re not.
There are two things in that tale that often come to me.
The real story isn’t the rangers and dwarves and elves with their swords and bows and axes, or the soldiers of Gondor in fine armor and bright spears, or the Riders of Rohan on the amazing horses of that land. Neither is it in the twisted orcs, horrid trolls, and the rest of the monsters and men arrayed against the characters I care about.
It’s three little figures trudging a damn long way. In the end none of them really succeeded in their ultimate goal, either. Three fellows went on a long walk and saved the world.
The two who survived were never the same. Transformed forever by their experience.
As a bonus notion: Middle Earth was saved despite Frodo and Gollum. Both failed. Neither accomplished the quest set to them. Either to destroy the Ring or retain it.
Improbably — and as Douglas Adams pointed out by simply *imagining* the Improbability Drive, improbability is a force in our Universe — failure saved the world.
Frodo failed spectacularly. Then failed again, less spectacularly, when Gollum succeeded. Gollum followed success with a spectacular fail capering into oblivion, and so succeeded in saving the world.
It will not go as planned.
Even with the low mortality rate being discussed that’s still one in a hundred. I know more people than that. Who of you will I bury? Who will bury me?
It will not be the same. The transformation has a viral vector which is already in play.
In metaphor I’m certain we are killing the cats that would eat the rats and spare us.
We’ll still be here. Enough of us.
Act like a carrier; live like I’ll survive.
I’ll continue to Feed, Clothe, and Visit as I was called. (I don’t have to violate the distance to do that.)
And I still make eye contact when I’m out, smile, and say “Hello”.
Because, as I’ve said elsewhere

… but if you’ll sit with me, when the Dragon is near,
and share my fear?
There’s the Real Intimacy.

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