Gratitude and Misfortunes

La Voz de Galicia – April 17, 2020 →

Cristina PatoI dreamt that I did not get there. I ran and ran, but made no headway. The audience was inside, screaming for me to begin, and I, less than 10 feet away from the stage, could not reach it no matter how hard I tried. I awoke feeling overwhelmed, and once I realized it was only a dream, I tried to go back to sleep.

It is a recurring dream. Especially since a few years back, I began the transition from the stage to spend more time doing things I am passionate about. I suppose it is related to the fact that sometimes I really do not arrive to everything, but I don’t think about it too much: it is a dream, nothing else.

But what we are living through now is not. The concerns are real, and we already know that the problems and the worries will last for years.

For some, the misfortune is the inability to say goodbye to their dead. For others, it is not getting there, having to close and see the effort of a life of work wither away (that bar paying rent, that clothing store). Or that their lives are put on hold since people say that large concerts will not return until the end of 2021. And for those who are giving it their all (due to their calling or due to survival), perhaps the misfortune is to continue working without being able to rest for a second, exposed not only to contagion but also to pressures exerted by their neighbors…

Sustaining dignity is going to be hard work, and perhaps we should stop listening to the daily political sermon to imagine the story of the supermarket’s cashier and perhaps ask her how things are going for her, or the story of the neighbor who cleans the retirement homes, or the worker who disinfects containers…These women are the ones who make the machinery that holds up society work. They deserve our applause, our kindness, and our profound gratitude.

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