2020 has been a long, eventful year with the Covid-19 pandemic. Many will be tempted to reconnect with family and friends across the country or your home state for Thanksgiving 2020. However, with Covid cases and deaths sharply rising, it is safer to stay at home.
Many underestimate or misunderstand Covid and what it means to get sick. You may think that you either have a mild case or end up hospitalized in critical condition. This is a common misconception. Our non-profit founder, Brandy, has learned the hard way that there is an unforgiving spectrum of disease severity. Covid disease is so much more than the worst flu you’ve ever had and can have debilitating effects even after you’ve begun feeling better. Brandy is currently struggling with persisting brain fog more than two weeks after her diagnosis. She describes it as the feeling you get after you’ve just had a seizure, but it doesn’t end. Her sense of smell and taste hasn’t returned either.
Due to her experience, she urges everyone to wear a mask. Even if you are wearing a mask and a person you are interacting with isn’t, there is still a risk of infection. Don’t risk your own health out of a misguided sense of politeness to entertain those willing to put your health at risk. If someone is unwilling to wear a mask, then it is safest to not associate with them.
That’s why this year the greatest gift you can give to someone is respect. Respect each other’s health and show thanks if you are still healthy. We are all struggling during these trying times, but showing gratitude for what we do have is necessary to maintain our mental health. It also promotes the opportunity for future gatherings with family without risking our own, family, and community health.
To achieve that feeling of family togetherness we will have to expand our horizons. Utilizing Zoom, and other video conferencing application, we can still chat and interact with family and friends from the safety and comfort of our homes. It’s certainly different than every other Thanksgiving we’ve known. But by not being together this year, we can ensure we can be together next year and years to come.