Waiting to Exhale…

Dear Reader:

Does anyone else out there feel like I have been feeling since last March and most of last year…like I am holding my breath with so many scary unknowns still ‘circling the wagons?’

Watching the pandemic go from just one or two known cases of the corona virus (in our country) early last year to a pandemic in a matter of weeks was like riding an out-of-control roller coaster off the tracks. Terrifying!

I kept holding my breath as we all watched the number of cases climb so rapidly that scenes of hospitals… filled to capacity and then overflowing…became the “norm” and not the exception…these pictures kept me up at nights… re-living the scenes.

Even more disconcerting were the mixed messages we kept receiving concerning the seriousness of this virus…I felt like I was living in ‘limbo’ wondering how medicine and informed doctors and researchers and political leaders could be so out of tune with each other.

Every time there was a new wave of cases or repercussions from massive unemployment to safety in education… I found myself holding my breath again…the people now being affected were my friends, my neighbors, my family, my grandchildren.

When I went for my physical a few months back…I was told to slowly hold my breath until I was told to exhale so the doctor could check my heart and respiratory system. I quickly inhaled…but when my doctor told me to exhale…I hesitated before finally blowing the air out.

When she looked at me questioningly,  I confessed that I had gotten in the bad habit of holding my breath with all the upsetting media news on a continuous basis.

In response…I got a wink and was informed that I was not alone in my struggle to release all my pent up emotions with one big exhale. Consciously or unconsciously many people were doing the same thing…in their attempt to control something in an environment that seemed completely out of control

Like me…Did you try reassuring yourself that if we could just get past certain dates and events last year…then the world would turn itself right side up again? We would be able to exhale with a huge sigh of relief and then actually start breathing normally again?

But instead, even with all our prayerful hopes for the new year- 2021…Covid, not only didn’t go away, it returned with a vengeance…and the election didn’t end the disunity…it only exacerbated the problem.

The only solution I see to this problem is a massive uprising…an uprising of kindness!

If all of us could take our minds off ourselves and our opinions and ideas and instead go do something good for someone else who deserves a break in this world…an act of random kindness…we just might see a lasting effect that could pull many citizens back together again.

So until tomorrow…

“Human kindness has never weakened the stamina or softened the figure of a free people. A nation does not have to be cruel to be tough.” — Franklin D. Roosevelt

“Today is my favorite day” Winnie the Pooh



About Becky Dingle

I was born a Tarheel but ended up a Sandlapper. My grandparents were cotton farmers in Laurens, South Carolina and it was in my grandmother’s house that my love of storytelling began beside an old Franklin stove. When I graduated from Laurens High School, I attended Erskine College (Due West of what?) and would later get my Masters Degree in Education/Social Studies from Charleston Southern. I am presently an adjunct professor/clinical supervisor at CSU and have also taught at the College of Charleston. For 28 years I taught Social Studies through storytelling. My philosophy matched Rudyard Kipling’s quote: “If history were taught in the form of stories, it would never be forgotten.” Today I still spread this message through workshops and presentations throughout the state. The secret of success in teaching social studies is always in the story. I want to keep learning and being surprised by life…it is the greatest teacher. Like Kermit said, “When you’re green you grow, when you’re ripe you rot.”
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3 Responses to Waiting to Exhale…

  1. Becky,
    What a beautiful post and so needed today. Yes, kindness and not hate! Sign me up!


    • Becky Dingle says:

      It’s a date…though I strongly suspect that you have others who rise up to thank and emulate your acts of kindness. If all of us would just add an extra random act of kindness to our daily life…we could double or triple the amount of kindness sent out into this weary world… yearning so for it! It could spread faster than the coronavirus!
      Have a wonderful day! Thank you for the response! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Rachel Edwards says:



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