Why COVID-19 May Be Good for the Earth

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It’s 12:34 p.m. on a Monday afternoon. My husband and I are sitting in our family room watching the news.

Okay, let me be a little more honest. My husband was watching the news. I wasn’t paying a lick of attention to any of it because I was crocheting a blanket. And frankly, I’m tired of hearing about COVID-19.

Even though I wasn’t really paying attention, something made me snap my head from my 88th double-crochet stitch and listen as Governor McMasters called for a Stay-at-Home ordinance. I remember hearing something about going to jail or being fined if you are found outside of the home and not attending to essential business.

My mind immediately slammed back in time to the winter of 2009 when I was home, recuperating from a thyroidectomy procedure. I had decided to watch The Happening; written and directed by M. Night Shyamalan.

It took me five sittings to watch a one-hour and thirty-one-minute movie because the content scared the snot out of me. The movie also forced me to acknowledge the same truths that James Lovelock, a British chemist came to in the 1970s when he presented his Gaia Hypothesis.

Simply put, the Gaia Hypothesis says the following:

  1. The Earth is a living, breathing thing.
  2. All living things have a sense of self-preservation.
  3. All living things have a fight or flight response when their self-preservation is threatened.
  4. All living things thrive in a balanced environment.
  5. All living things strive to create equilibrium when disequilibrium occurs.

And what in the world does any of that have to do with COVID-19?

I won’t give any spoilers of the movie, just in case anyone wanted to check it out during our Corona-cation; but the movie explores the scenario of: What if the Earth was fighting to swing her system back into a state of equilibrium and ensure she survives

And because my writer’s brain is always trying to find the points of connection between what is and what might be… I added 1+1 and came up with COVID-19 being the Earth’s attempt to balance things out. 

I know, it sounds like I’m some kind of crazy conspiracy theorist, but hear me out on this.

Reports of improved climate conditions are coming in from all over the world. It is an unexpected benefit of an otherwise horrible, deadly situation. I’m not taking lightly the fact that over 84,000 lives have been lost worldwide to this pandemic. I am looking for understanding… a reason. I don’t believe in coincidence, I have no reason to.

Traffic-free roads, plane-free skies, and widespread brick-and-mortar closings have made the planet a beneficiary of the coronavirus pandemic — but only in the short term.

– Luke Denne, NBC News

There is no doubt that the environment is greatly benefiting from the pandemic. Carbon emissions are down, noise pollution in cities and oceans are down, the seismic activity is decreased as well. 

What does all this mean?

It means an improvement in the air quality, thus an improvement in the health of the Earth’s atmosphere and the ozone layer.

It means because people are staying in, creating less seismic activity and noise pollution, scientists are able to conduct experiments and collect data they’ve not been able to do prior to the pandemic. Data that will help them determine the best approach to address climate changes.

It means the noise levels in the oceans have decreased so much, that marine life will have a more productive reproductive season if it stays that way.

It means for the first time in a long time almost every human on the planet is forced to simply… be.

Be still. Be quiet. Be aware. Be alone. Be considerate. Be human.

At least for the foreseeable future, the living Earth is finding some semblance of balance in which she can thrive. 

Could the Coronavirus have the same function as the spores released by the trees in the movie, The Happening? I don’t know.

What do you think the purpose of such wide-spread pestilence could be? 

Michelle Fournet, a marine ecologist at Cornell who studies acoustic environments, is hoping to position underwater microphones off the coast of Alaska and Florida, where she has studied humpback whales and other marine life, to investigate how the waters have changed in the absence of noise from cruise ships as the industry suspends operations worldwide.

~Morena Koren; The Atlantic

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Ella Shawn is a contemporary women's fiction writer with a fondness for complex characters and happily-ever-afters. She also produces a podcast aptly named, Enchanted BEAST Podcast where she elevates, encourages, and empowers women to connect with their higher self and live the enchanted lifestyle they deserve to live. And because she's a mommy of three beautiful daughters, she writes for a mommy blog once a month. If she's not writing, podcasting, or blogging; then you can probably find her sitting in her favorite chair with a ball of yarn, her wooden crochet hooks making something bohemian-inspired for her Etsy shop, Browns-n-Barnacles PCD. Ella married the boy she fell in love with during her senior year of high school. They started dating in 1992 and either they both were too lazy to look for other options or were lucky enough to find their happily-ever-after at the age of seventeen. Ella says it the enduring love she shares with her husband that allows her to write romance novels with hard-won HEAs. After developing systemic lupus erythematosus and narcolepsy w/cataplexy, she and her husband decided it was time for her to come home and learn how to live as healthy as possible with the new reality their family was now facing. It turned out to be a blessing, because a few years later, her youngest daughter developed two of the rarest neurological sleeping disorders in the world (Klein Levins Syndrome- a.k.a. Sleeping Beauty Disease and Sighted Non-24). Not only is Vickey able to be at home with her daughter while she attends South Carolina Virtual Charter School and when she goes into KLS episodes, she is also free to pursue her passion as a romance writer, podcaster, and blogger under the pen name; Ella Shawn. Her enchanted platform is an extension of her philosophy of living, loving, and evolving. She writes to gain understanding of the hard choices women often have to make. She endeavors to create enchanted spaces in which to disrobe and see the whole of who she is, and who she isn’t. Vickey shares her journey of self-discovery through writing romance novels, on her podcast, and in her blog. She loves connecting with women who enjoy seeing glimpses of their truth wrapped in sexy happily-ever-after’s. Vickey uses her platform to encourage women to reconnect with their true and essential selves. To cultivate and nurture spaces where they cease being simply women of flesh and bone and become Enchanted Beasts. When she’s not being Ella Shawn, or learning coach, or caregiver, or being taken care of… You may find her painting, crocheting, meditating, or sweating it out in a hot yoga class. But she’s a wild and free spirit who would be just as happy living in a converted van and tooling around the country—sleeping where she runs out of gas. Landing wherever she lands and meeting whoever she meets. However; she’s pretty sure her husband and children wouldn’t be willing to pack up and hit the road with her and, anyway—where would all the piggies go? So, she indulges her nomadic, bohemian spirit with planned travel, mother-cation weekends, and her ever-growing imagination.

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