We are naturally a hopeful people. It’s one of the qualities of this community I appreciate most. Not that many weeks ago, we had every reason to feel renewed optimism. Our vaccination rate was among the best in the country.
We saw precipitous declines in the numbers of COVID cases, hospitalizations, and deaths. Life as we knew it seemed more “normal,” and the start of summer brought a renewed sense of living.
For a time it seemed as though we had weathered the worst of this unrivaled period in our lives, only to face the sobering realization in recent weeks that this long, difficult journey isn’t quite over yet. The anxiety and worry we thought was in the rear view is now back front and center, magnified by the return of kids to school and a change of seasons that results in us gathering once again indoors.
For many of us the resurgence of Covid has meant more changes in plans, readjusting daily routines, and a resumption of anxieties that come with the countless unknowns of this unrelenting virus. Moms and dads with kids too young to be eligible for vaccines face renewed, understandable angst as classes resume. Unfortunately, this virus has a staying power that’s outlasted our hopes and a resiliency that’s putting our science and medical communities to the test.
As we rally once again, it is important we be mindful of the many faces of human sacrifice, those who go to work day after day uncertain of the difficulties they will face, but well aware they’re the last line of defense separating a family from a painful loss to celebrating a joyous recovery. For the countless health care workers across our community, every new iteration of this virus brings new trauma. For 18 months they’ve had to console, guiding patients and families through the uncertainty and sometimes loss that comes with combating Covid-19. The cumulative effect has resulted in a significant toll being taken on our nurses, doctors, and all clinical and hospital specialists. Their days once again are marred by rising bed counts and increased illness.
We are all tired of Covid and its many reaches. As we grieve our inconveniences and losses, let us never forget those who have to suit up for endless hours each day to help another, all while living with the fear they may bring this devastating sickness back home to their families. The best way we can show our gratitude to those who directly face this tiring work each day is to live and act in such a way that reduces the risk to our friends, families, and co-workers. We owe it to our health care workers to get vaccinated and wear masks.
To everyone thrust back into the front lines of this pandemic, you are not forgotten, your sacrifice is recognized, and your patience, persistence, and dedication are appreciated.