After three long months of staying home, life seems to finally be hinting at the possibility of things returning back to normal in the near future. It has been an uphill battle against the coronavirus for a long time. I’m excited for the summer, but not without reservations.
For the first time in months, I’m venturing out of my home.
Seeing how restrictions are slowly lifting is promising. It is almost like we can see the light at the end of the tunnel for the first time in months. Everyone wants to run out and indulge in what they’ve been deprived of for so long. Seeing loved ones, shopping, eating out.
Of course, the trend does not guarantee that it is the right thing to do by any means. Instead, it just seems to be what is happening. It is unclear whether people have given up on quarantining out of frustration, skepticism, or some interpretation of published numbers.
Put plainly, this pandemic has brought one unsettling truth to light for me: no one fully knows what is actually happening.
It’s the truth.
Experts will claim what they want. Conspiracy theorists will spread propaganda on whatever basis they please. Science will push inferred claims based on whatever data are available. Those who watch the news will have their own beliefs. Recovered victims of the virus have their own stories.
Information comes at us from all sides and it becomes up to individuals to decide who they trust and to use their own judgment on what to believe.
Without getting political, I’m just pointing out that a lot of anger from the quarantine has led to finger-pointing at politicians since they make these decisions for us and politicians generally don’t like it when the masses are angry with them. So I can’t say I’m shocked to see the restrictions being lifted.
The coronavirus doesn’t seem too threatening until you know someone personally who died from it. Then, suddenly, you don’t scoff at the idea of wearing a mask and gloves anymore. Finally, the situation is “real” enough to take it seriously. Because it hit close to home.
Some people can’t conceptualize risk until they see it play out before their very eyes. It’s like if they can’t see it, they just don’t believe it.
Regardless of who you listen to, the fact of the matter is that the information regarding this pandemic is pretty much all new.
No one was fully prepared for this. We’re dealing with the unknown so “knowing” anything isn’t actually possible. All we can do is continue to study this virus and analyze things based on our history and past experiences of dealing with similar situations.
In December, everything was a lot of speculation and guess-work based on what was happening in China. People referenced SARS for some sense of what might happen. Then, as cases arose in the USA, we had to urgently act preventatively in order to stop a massive pandemic in its tracks.
I’ve never seen a reaction like the one that countries around the entire world took to self-isolate and stop the spread of the new coronavirus.
As difficult as it was, officials stepped up to protect vulnerable populations. For that, I’m proud. Choosing to keep people home meant taking big sacrifices. Financial sacrifices. Economic sacrifices. Political sacrifices.
The decision to lock down an entire nation does not come easily.
It’s my hope that as we venture out and enjoy the summer and one another, that things will get better and not worse. Come the fall, when temperatures drop, I’m not sure what might be stopping a second-wave from occurring. To me, it seems like the answer is: nothing.
A vaccine legally cannot be made available to the masses until 2021. Never mind the challenges of logistics and politics that come alongside its distribution. This winter will be a season to watch out for. As for now, I hope things don’t take a turn for the worse.
I hope people can enjoy life like normal without consequences to deal with later. Whether that’s actually possible or not, I’m not sure. But it seems like people are over it and moving on is going to happen whether we’re ready for it or not.
I still think it’s best to air on the side of caution. I’m limiting my own exposure to close family and friends until we know more. I’m still wearing a mask in stores and minimizing contact with people I don’t know. Like I mentioned earlier, this is all like an experiment and we are the guinea pigs testing it out, unfortunately…
Wishing you all health & safety.