I cancelled Thanksgiving plans with my brother and sister-in-law and will spend the day home alone (well, with the cats, but no people). They probably think I’m over-reacting but I’m just being cautious in this weird 2020 world of Covid. The news is full of stories about hospitals being overwhelmed by patients, with warnings from medical experts about the dangers of gathering in small groups indoors this year. Which most holiday gatherings are because it’s almost December and it’s too cold even in Texas to hang out outside for turkey, green bean casserole, sweet potatoes, and pie.
Far, far too many people are ignoring that advice to cancel Thanksgiving. It’s hard to undo tradition and the familiar habits of generations and we all miss our loved ones. But I’m afraid of seeing the hospitalizations and deaths increase through the roof after this. I have pre-existing conditions that make me vulnerable to Covid, so I don’t want to get it myself, but I really really don’t want to give it to someone else. Most people I know who had or have it warn us to NOT get it. So why are so many people walking around doing exactly what they want?
Some are because they’re tired of people telling them what to do. Covid fatigue is a long haul, especially in these days of 24/7 non-stop media and social media coverage of the pandemic. They’re tired of being told to wear a mask and that stores were closing and that they can’t travel to foreign countries because we’re banned from entry. They don’t want government pushing itself on them, not that I’ve actually noticed much of that happening from the feds, anyway.
A scary number don’t believe that Covid is real or can kill people, or at minimum will make a lot of people very sick in ways we won’t really understand for a long time. Some feel that they’ve lived their lives and if God takes them, it’s okay with them. It doesn’t seem that anyone NOT wearing a mask cares if they infect someone else; it’s just all about doing what they want.
If we all wore masks, kept our social distance, and stayed away from other people until there was a vaccine available and distributed, our lives would be different. I actually had a foreboding last winter that this wouldn’t go away quickly. But people aren’t going to pay attention to that. They will just show their independence, individuality, stubborness, and selfishness to do what they want. Which is why 50 million people are traveling for Thanksgiving. I expect the infection and death rates to soar by Christmas.
Me? I’m staying home with the cats. I’ll swap fall decorations for Christmas, eat pork roast instead of turkey, and watch Hallmark movies. I have a 4-day weekend when I don’t have to go anywhere or do anything. Avoiding people on this big family and food holiday is how I’m spending this weird 2020 Thanksgiving. I suspect Christmas will be the same.
That said, I am thankful for my family and their understanding of my need to do this. For my beautiful ginger girls who bring joy and companionship every day. For my friends here and spread across the country, both ones I know in person and ones I met online and who have become close friends. For the strength and focus that allowed me to take weight off in a way that is healthy and sustainable. For a job that lets me serve, sometimes be creative, and learn new skills. For my health and for good doctors. For my home, cozy and now personal after last year’s renovation. For my life.
Thank you, God, for loving me and keeping me safe. Protect those I love and help us to make wise decisions in these extraordinary times.