Ideas in the time of Fear

Right now is an unsettling time for us all. The word “pandemic” strikes fear in most people, rightfully so.

As a family, we are in the midst of two separate high-risk pools. We are so fortunate to have all four of our parents alive, and all of them are in their 80s with some health issues. They are at risk. We also have a member of the family with ALS, which means he is at a higher risk. While we are concerned, we are not afraid, nor will we stop living.

We will, however, be cautious and careful. No, going out to eat right now may not happen, because of our concerns about crowds. The mall? No. Grocery stores? Yes, when needed, although we have planned ahead and have staples so we can stay away as much as possible. Family meals together? Of course!

We clean surfaces. We wash our hands. We open windows when we can. We are being careful and planning for all possibilities.

But what more can we all do? What can we do to bring light and hope back to our own lives and to those around us?

  • Practice self-care, especially if you are caring for others. Take a walk, eat well, stay hydrated, meditate, listen to good music, do the things that are good for you and make you feel more centered and positive.
  • We can offer to go grocery shopping for those who are at higher risk. No, we don’t need to drop off the groceries and have a long in-person visit, but we can leave them on the doorstep or porch.
  • We can offer support to local small businesses. Don’t feel safe going there right now due to concerns about the outbreak? Buy your holiday gifts now — gift cards and certificates will help businesses stay afloat until things get more settled.
  • Don’t minimize the feelings of others. So you aren’t worried? Lucky you. But don’t make fun of others who are, or who are making choices you might not make.
  • If you have “stuff” that you have bought due to the situation, such as hand sanitizer, and you have lots of it, share it with those who don’t such as giving to the homeless shelter.
  • Canned goods? Buy them and donate them to food shelves. Those who are struggling to make ends meet as it is will need extra support at this time.
  • Know people who are self-quarantining, or are actually sick?
    • Do they have smartphones or computers? Video chat with them, send them funny messages, let them know they are loved.
    • Drop off books, puzzles, or craft projects to them to keep them busy.
  • Are you self-isolating?
    • Write cards or letters to people.
    • Do a craft project.
    • Call or video chat with those you love.

Wishing you all love, joy, good health and hope!

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