COLUMN: Tracy Renee Lee - Cry Uncle

Special to HuntingtonNews.Net
COLUMN: Tracy Renee Lee - Cry Uncle


Wow, what a difference a week makes. Now that the COVID-19 restrictions are easing I see people smiling and greeting each other with vigor. Of course, we must all keep a safe distance between us, but it is so wonderful to see cheer and relief in the faces of so many.

Unfortunately, some believe that we may never be able to return to life as we once knew it. Many Americans have lost their jobs, their businesses, and in some cases, their loved ones. What is fair about that? Nothing at all.

I have seen friends who have enjoyed thriving businesses filing for bankruptcy. I see buildings in the city where I live that once housed thriving enterprises now standing empty with signs of closure in their windows. It is heartbreaking. I wish there were something I could do. I think they will all recover eventually, entrepreneurs are generally the type of people who overcome problems, not wallow in them. After all, an entrepreneur replaces “I wish” with “I will.” I believe we will overcome our setbacks.

It is natural for those of us who have suffered substantial losses over the Great COVID-19 shutdown to feel sadness, uncertainty, fear for our futures, and anger. These are valid and powerful emotions associated with loss. Rolled up, these emotions spell grief.



Dr. George Bonanno, of Columbia University, has found that people who exercise “flexibility in their emotions often cope well with loss and are healthier over time.”

His research indicates that laughing and smiling can affect positive recovery. (Mourning Light III, 2019)

If laughing and smiling can affect the grief of losing a loved one in a positive manner, why then would it not work for our recovery from the grief inflicted through the losses associated with COVID-19? I know that it can and that it does. I have seen it already in the people who live around me who are utilizing its application.



Every individual is unique and therefore has his/her own unique preferences of emotional expression.

Experts agree that survivors should allow themselves to grieve in their own way, according to their personal preferences.

Certain survivors may prefer to express their feelings through action rather than discussion.

For instance, physical activities like walking or swimming, or creative activities like writing or painting may bring comfort and relief.

Others may prefer confiding with family, friends, or a grief counselor about their feelings, difficulties, and fears.

Mourning is the process of adapting to loss.

It involves letting go and learning to accept and survive in your new reality.

Recovery is one’s acceptance and adaptation over loss.

Its accomplishment varies in time and strategy with each survivor. (Mourning Light III, 2019)

As I watch those around me begin the arduous task of economic recovery, I see them already utilizing their own unique methods of recovery. Some exercise, some talk in the line at the supermarket, and some are out building and improving their businesses. This is wonderful to see. They are adapting and overcoming the trials of economic loss.



Researchers have found that finding meaning in life after the loss of a loved one can help survivors adapt.

The above statement indicates that survivors who identify, prioritize, and connect to their preferences, priorities, and relationships (including the relationship with their decedent), will experience a swifter and more complete recovery from loss. (Mourning Light III, 2019)

If we replace (including the relationship with their decedent) with (including the relationship with their COVID-19 losses) we can suddenly see that attitude is what will govern and determine our economic recovery and the associated emotions. Attitude governs recovery in all aspects of life.

Although we must continue observing certain restrictions to ensure our health and that of those about us, we do not have to allow our attitudes to dwindle into depths of depression. Americans at large carry the entrepreneurial spirit. The entrepreneurial spirit is one of forward movement. Our country is a vast corporation encouraging smaller corporations to form and make it stronger. It is up to us, not our government to overcome the devastations of COVID-19.

As my mother used to say, “You can get glad in the same pants you got mad in.” It’s time for us to get over being mad. Madness, whether associated with anger or insanity, must be bridled and overcome for improvement and happiness to move in. Let’s make our decisions to take control of our destinies and move them where we want them. If we do not, someone else will, and we may not care for their ideas of liberty, life, and the pursuit of happiness.

I am an American, a proud entrepreneurial American. I do not wish for better days, I accomplish them. I am unashamed of the accomplishments of my ancestors. I am unashamed of their motivations, their pride, and their abilities to make the world a better place. It is an indisputable truth that in order to improve the life of another, you must first meet your needs of survival. It is time for us to repair our nation to ensure its survival so that we can shore up other nations and make the world better for all. We may have new parameters in which to work, but we are the world’s greatest and least selfish people. We can do this.

We must hold evil at bay. Whether that means evil nations, evil people, evil moods, or evil disease; I care not. I am ready for the fight. I will stand up and I will greet the day with the knowledge that I will win. I will do it through the American entrepreneurial spirit of hard work and dedication to my cause. I am not broken, nor will I ever be. I will press ever onward and I will get through this.

I'm crying uncle, but not to surrender. My cry is to Uncle Sam and all Americans to sally forth, band together, have hope, and reclaim our nation's strength as "can do - will do" people. Join me and we will be stronger; insurmountable. Together, we will "Make America Great Again," and together, we will share prosperity, enlightenment, and happiness with the citizens of the world.

COVID-19 is nothing more than a virus.  The world has suffered worse and will again in the future.  This is our time; our time to step up or step aside.  I'm stepping up.  Won't you join me?

My name is Tracy Renee Lee. I am a Certified Grief Counselor (GC-C), Funeral Director (FDIC), published author, syndicated columnist, and co-founder of the “Mikey Joe Children’s Memorial” and Heaven Sent, Corp. I write books, weekly bereavement articles, and Grief BRIEFs related to understanding and coping with grief. I am the American Funeral Director of the Year Runner-Up and recipient of the BBB’s Integrity Award.

It is my life's work to comfort the bereaved and help them live on.

For additional encouragement, read other articles or watch video “Grief Briefs,” please go to my website at

Please follow me on Instagram at "PushingUpDaisies_TracyLee".