Not My New Normal

I would like to share a different perspective than the one that is dominating our current culture.  This one is about social media, America, and cherry tomatoes.

Not My New Normal
“Not My _____” fill in the blank of the thing you dislike.  That is how we are doing it now, right?  Not my President, not my Governor, you've heard it before.  If I am going to play that game, mine will be “Not My New Normal”.  I reject the proposed messaging, from government, media, and friends, that this world we are in now is our new normal.  And we likely won’t ‘return to normal’ for some time, years even, or ever.   You can continue to repeat it in hopes that you will wear me down.  But in reality, to me and I am sure many others, it elicits an extremely negative emotional and psychological response.

Displaying a United States (US) flag upside down is "a signal of dire distress in instances of extreme danger to life or property". I don't mean disrespect for the flag or nation that I love, but we do need to call out the extreme danger of so much of what is happening right now.  Ethically, financially, and for our health.

Let's start here, this is #NotMyNewNormal.  Being silenced.  Losing freedoms.  Jeopardizing my own health and well being for what?  To flatten the curve?  We did that, so now for what?  Until a vaccine that will save us all?  Like the flu version does, where hundreds of thousands still die annually, in addition to those injured from the jab itself?  No thanks.  #NotMyNewNormal

Deaths of Despair

So much of what we are seeing happening from the "pandemic" that was created and released upon us is the exacerbation of our existing societal breakdowns.  Illnesses will strike hardest against those of lower socioeconomic statuses and often in minority communities.  One health problem in particular that has run rampant in our society but mostly stayed as a silent killer, thanks to its stigma, is deaths related to mental health.

We are now seeing research warning that the next health crisis triggered by COVID-19 that we will encounter (in greater numbers than we are already seeing) being called: “Deaths of Despair”.  These are “conditions stemming from the novel coronavirus — rampant unemployment, isolation, and an uncertain future."  The projection from the latest study?  That these three assumptions, when studied from previous economic downturns such as the Great Depression and even the 2008 recession, "could lead to 75,000 deaths from drug or alcohol abuse and suicide.”

Let's put into perspective how big of a concern our government has for this issue. From Dr. Bob Lahita, Physician, Author, and Researcher as stated in a recent interview“Of interest, it’s important to note that the government has only given about $500 million to this problem, this mental health problem, where they have given $16 billion dollars to the airline industry. ” We had a mental health crisis in America before this.  I don't know what to call these new projections, but at my time of writing these, this death toll would far outweigh the deaths from COVID-19.  I will not stay silent, this is #NotMyNewNormal.

Help Lines
:  For immediate help, if you are in a crisis, call the toll-free National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255), which is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. All calls are confidential.
The Disaster Distress Helpline at 1-800-985-5990, is also confidential, free, and available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. People can also text TalkWithUs to 66746 to connect with a trained crisis counselor.

Turning to our American Foundation, Our Constitution

It honestly terrifies me with how little it took to strip us of our constitutional rights. 

Just look at things like the stay at home orders that reversed the definitions of quarantine versus house-arrest.  

This is #NotMyNewNormal.

My freedoms don't stop at your fears.  If things re-open and you want to or need to stay home you can.  But keeping things closed has costs like the one I mentioned above that are outweighing the benefits.  Do those lives matter?  

Not to mention the economic costs, we don't have time to even begin that conversation in this post.
Those of us who have stood up and spoke out against the extreme measures weren't doing so to be insensitive to the very real crisis that has been created.  We understand people are dying, but we also know that people are dying of many things every day and we don't see the same crisis reaction being played out.  We are left with more questions than answers, and I know that this is #NotMyNewNormal.

The very idea of exercising our constitutional rights to peacefully protest brought out anger and criticism.  Posting about ReOpen Oregon Rallies in my home state of Oregon was received by angry and sad emojis, and negative feedback from fellow independent business owners.

Peaceful demonstrations at state capitals and protesting became a new stereotype overgeneralization and point for heated debate.  This was posted by someone in Oregon that I thought was my friend.  This is #NotMyNewNormal.

No one was doing this in Oregon.  I was there.  I know.  Were you?

Andrew Napolitano said of our US Constitution that: “when interpreted in accordance with the plain meaning of its words, and informed by history — does not permit the government to infringe upon personal freedoms, no matter the emergency or pandemic.”  The government throwing out our Constitutional rights is #NotMyNewNormal.

"If you do not take an interest in the affairs of your government, then you are doomed to live under the rule of fools." - Plato

What Happens When This Culture is Widely Accepted?

We continue to lose our rights and freedoms.  

Gathering for religious celebrations becomes illegal.

This is #NotMyNewNormal 

Most of us have heard the term 'group think', but what are the consequences of that type of behavior?  Cheryl K. Chumley asserts that: "The most damaging and lasting effects of COVID-19 on America won’t be so much ones of physical or medical as they will be mental."

Cheryl goes on to say: "What’s worse is the government has successfully turned those who want to think for themselves into Public Enemy Number One. "  

Our ability to speak freely and question those things that don't see right, those are not things we can lose and still uphold our Constitution.  This is #NotMyNewNormal.

As free speech crumbles, we see a rise in censorship.  The argument is quickly made, 'well these are private companies', but they operate on free share platforms that exempt them from other publishing regulations.  So that isn't entirely true in how they are being used to manipulate, control, and remove freedoms.

Controlling the Narrative
I'm honestly surprised that movies like Out of Shadows weren't pulled down like Plandemic was.

As a person whose businesses and passion are focused on health and wellness, I am very concerned to see education for natural, God-given solutions banned and censored by private entities like Google and YouTube

I wished more people were concerned about the increasing number of poisonings (especially of children) on the rise.  There is a price to be paid when we poison our bodies with dangerous chemicals.  But this is a story our government has been long happy to ignore, just look at what really happened under the Toxic Substances Control Act of 1976 (TSCA).

Even the story we have received around masks has constantly changed.  They are absolutely not needed per Fauci, to begin with.  Then they became so important (despite their own inherent health concerns), that some cities enforced fines for being without one, like San Antonio, Texas where I am normally at work.  Now, they are moving to recommended in most areas, but the fear and peer-shaming may move them forward still.  This is #NotMyNewNormal.

I talk about this more in another blog post, To Mask, or Not to Mask?  

Either way, let's respect each other's decisions and not shame. 

In addition to the poisoning from the harsh chemicals and cleaners, watch for the same after the vaccinations start.   But they won’t be associated, they will be mysteriously different issues I promise.  Another topic for another day...

What if This Was All Some Sort of Bad Dream?

If you want to test who loves and hates you, try posting this opinion piece for people to ponder: "Coronavirus hype biggest political hoax in history".

"Those who are able to see beyond the shadows and lies of their culture 
will never be understood let alone believed by the masses." ~ Plato

A Return to My Normal, Strangers Coming Together for the Greater Good
When I recently visited my friend’s house while she was working in the yard, I noticed that her prized cherry tomato growing barrel was empty.  I asked her about it, she loved those cherry tomatoes, why were they not planted?  She replied that she couldn’t afford it this year.  Her family had been hit hard, she had lost her stream of income, lost a temporary job she had taken, and hadn’t received any financial assistance or unemployment.  My heart sank for her hearing those words and knowing the joy she was losing in the simplest pleasure.

I couldn’t solve all of those problems, but I knew I could bring back cherry tomatoes and hopefully a little joy into her life.  I am a part of many groups on Facebook, including one more recently called Corvallis Garden Share.  I was new to that community and hadn’t yet participated much, but had joined to learn more.

I decided to post this silly gif and ask these people for help.  Did anyone have an extra cherry tomato plant start that they might donate that I could deliver to help cheer up my friend?  They didn’t disappoint.  Within minutes I had offers for starts, other vegetables, and more!  Quickly there were over forty comments and offers poured in to donate and help.  When I messaged people to pick them up, they gave me boxes with several donated items, more than I had asked for, they were willing to bless someone they didn’t even know.

As my friend and I were both so blessed through the generosity of strangers in our community, I began talking to those who had an abundance and have shared. I was thankful to hear that their seeds had been so successful because this seems like the year we need to grow more than we need and to share with our communities.  

Let’s bring them back: “Victory gardens, also called war gardens or food gardens for defense, were vegetable, fruit, and herb gardens planted at private residences and public parks in the US, UK, Canada, Australia, and Germany during World War I and World War II.  In the wartime, governments encouraged people to plant victory gardens not only to supplement their rations but also to boost morale.”

But remember from what we learned above, don’t share why fruits, vegetables, vitamins, and minerals are good for health, that will get you banned or censored… #NotMyNewNormal

My America, One Nation, Under God
"For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind."  2 Timothy 1:7 

Our nation was born in a place of struggle and having to overcome what must have felt surely insurmountable.  Perhaps one of the true pieces of American history that I love to share with people is our first American flag, An Appeal to Heaven.  Have you heard of it before?

Dutch Sheets teaches about it: 

“It was quite significant as it had flown over our nation at its birthing. It was not the stars and stripes, but a flag commissioned by our first president, George Washington, before the signing of the Declaration of Independence.”

“The words "An Appeal to Heaven" became the decreed statement over the nation as this flag flew amid battlefields and encampments. This standard led the American Revolution's grossly outnumbered and under-resourced troops into battle repeatedly as they fought and won the war for America's freedom. The flag's history is expansive and profound.”

Maybe this is our nation’s re-birth.

Let Us Be AmeriCANs

It is possible to simultaneously:

Question everything we are told


know this is a real virus.

Not wear a mask in public


be proud of your friend making masks.

Stand up for our freedoms


respect our medical professionals doing their jobs.

Understand the economical devastation happening


be sad for lives lost.

Stand up for what you believe in


be kind to those who disagree.

There is Good News and it is All Around Us!
And there always has been!  Have you seen the YouTube show that spun up since this all started thanks to John Krasinski?  It's called SGN (stands for Some Good News).  It's fantastic and I hope very much that it might continue long into the future!  

How about one of my long time favorites, On The Road with Steve Hartman, have you see it?  These are fantastic stories of our greatest citizens, told by a very talented story-teller.

Another must-see?  Returning the Favor with America's sweetheart, Mike Rowe.

Humor and Fun

I know these are stressful times, but it’s okay (and actually healthy) to laugh and not lose touch with our human spirit.  

And besides, who doesn’t need a prescription for this fever, a little more cowbell?!?

Click on the image if you didn't catch my reference, it's worth it...

It can be so simple to have fun with one another when we allow ourselves the opportunity:

We Shall Be Known

I recently discovered this beautiful song and was so pleased that it found its way onto my Pandora playlist.  Its called "We Shall Be Known" by MaMuse on their Prayers for Freedom album. Have you heard it?  Give it a listen here:

I want to have these people in my life that help sharpen me, who make me better.  I want the type of love and friendship that people come around to make sure I am well and my fires are burning bright.  Here are the lyrics:

We shall be known by the company we keep

By the ones who circle round to tend these fires

We shall be known by the ones who sow and reap

The seeds of change, alive from deep within the earth

It is time now, it is time now that we thrive

It is time we lead ourselves into the well

It is time now, and what a time to be alive

In this Great Turning, we shall learn to lead in love

In this Great Turning, we shall learn to lead in love

We shall be known by the company we keep

By the ones who circle round to tend these fires

We shall be known by the ones who sow and reap

The seeds of change, alive from…

I Pray We Don't Go Back to Normal

While I am not the original author, I found this message shared on social media and found it to ring so true.

I pray that the next time a friend grabs me and pulls me in for a hug, I actually take the time to appreciate the gift of their embrace.

I pray that when school resumes and people are dropping kids off, they take the time to thank the staff for the amazing gift that they give to our community.

I pray that the next time I’m sitting in a crowded restaurant I take the time to look around at the smiling faces, loud voices, and thank God for the gift of community.

I pray that the next time I’m standing in church listening to the voices of praise and worship that I take a moment to thank God for the gift of the congregation.

I pray that the next time I see a person or situation that needs prayer, I hope I pray as passionately and fervently as I have these past few weeks.

I pray that when I am at the grocery store that I take a moment to thank God that He provides us with the necessities of life and the amazing people who work so hard to keep us supplied.

I pray that I never again take for granted the ability to hop in the car and visit a friend, go to the mall, go to a gathering, etc.

So, truth is, I don’t want things to return to the way they once were. I pray that we take the lessons and challenges of the past few weeks and find our truths.  Identify what worked and what didn't work.

My goal is to pray more, love harder, and truly appreciate the daily abundance of blessings that were so easily overlooked just a mere few weeks ago.

The Great Realization (or Realisation if you will)

Have you been able to watch YouTuber and poet, Tomos Roberts, aka Probably Tom Foolery's video of this title?  His pandemic poem, “The Great Realisation” and video have been viewed by a staggering 24 million-plus worldwide to date.

Hindsight is 2020...  

I hope that you found this journey a helpful reminder to some of our truths as free Americans.  I would love to hear your thoughts, comment below!  If you are ready for ways to stay happy and healthy, check out Dealing with #RealLife Chaos Naturally for simple tips you can implement immediately.

Stay in the conversation with me as I explore PTSD and Suicide, Veterans and Beyond.

Information courtesy of Echo Alexzander


Leave a Comment