Publisher’s Letter – April 2020

2020 Coronavirus PandemicRecently my youngest son, Kannen, and I were driving by Cabela’s and I said, “Wow! That parking lot is empty!”

His response: “I wish I was back at school. This situation sucks. I just want things to be normal again.”

That conversation led me to think about how this pandemic (a first for our generation) is affecting everyone’s lives. Kids are finishing the school year with online classes, normally interactive businesses are either closed indefinitely or there’s a phone number on the door for customers to call to speak with someone inside. Banks look more like gas stations during a fuel shortage. Hospitals aren’t allowing any visitors. We spray disinfectant on mail and packages before we touch them. All the while, people close to home and afar are struggling to survive this virus.

Fear motivates

Fear is a big motivator, and historically it’s had a profound ability to influence and even control our lives. As human beings, we’re designed for human interaction. We need each other. We require time together as friends, family, neighbors, lovers and industry colleagues. Life without personal contact deeply impacts who we are, how we think and how we live our day-to-day lives.

I can see this pandemic going away but not the virus. Worldwide, we’re going to have to decide how we’ll live our lives now. How will we live together while ensuring a happy, healthy existence personally and professionally? Our government is going to tell us that it’s OK to go back to work soon, but those words will be girded by a set of conditions on how we must interact to protect one another.

At home, we’ll need to establish similar rules. We’re going to find a new normal, but it’ll be different than before. For some of us life may not look too different, but for those in big metropolitan areas, change will be noticeable. Regardless, we’ll survive these times and we’ll figure out how to turn lemons into lemonade.

Let’s embrace today’s world, despite the pandemic. Strive for ways to demonstrate love for yourself, your loved ones and the people in your life. Make thoughtful decisions for your business and employees. Look for the silver lining in this era of upheaval. And, most importantly, spend time on your knees praying for those you love because when we’re spending our time looking after the needs of others, our problems start to fade away. Love … it’s what binds us all together.

Enjoy this shortened version of Concrete Decor, as we too are affected by the world around us.

Your friend in concrete,

Bent Mikkelsen


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