The red sign was placed by the door on the house. Food was prepared by neighbors and left outside the door. A family was ill. They were quarantined. It was my family. I had not yet joined this household that held my parents and older sisters. All had contracted Scarlet Fever. My mother was the caregiver, dealing with her own illness. The house was tagged because of a contagious disease.
So here we are in the midst of a worldwide coronavirus pandemic. Not like we didn’t know it would arrive sooner or later, yet no one is prepared. Not even our government. People strip the stores of products out of fear. Having grown up with an outhouse, I am not so worried about the toilet paper. As long as we have magazines and leaves, we should be just fine. Pandemic. An illness, a challenge, a change of attitude and of life.
Yet in this chaos, we see such a variety of responses. There are those who consider this ridiculous. How can anything like this strike at us? We are in a modern-day and age when all things are easily remedied. What’s with these people out in the stores stocking up on anything and everything?
Then we have those who are terrified. They fill every crevice of their home with “in case we need it” items, stripping the shelves selfishly. Bottles and jugs of water are piled into grocery carts. Water!!!! If I’m not mistaken, I can actually still turn the tap if I am thirsty.
Lastly, we have the practical people who check to see if they can get by for a few weeks. They consider how to economize and even share with others. Schools, organizations and even neighbors are making lunches for school kids on special needs programs. Teachers are also creating programs for their students to follow at home. We all work together. There is a sense of community that comes out of such times as these. With communications so readily at hand, we follow the news and see where help is needed. Our world is not so closed in. We use our creativity to stay busy and to entertain children. We step up, not back. We hold out a hand, not take from it. No one can say where this will lead, but it has led us to one another.
I hope you fall into the last category. We are all in this together, our homes, our neighborhoods, our country, our world. Let’s focus on what is important. Let’s focus on one another. There is no red sign on the door, only common sense.
Pamela Loxley Drake is a former resident of Darke County and is the author of Neff Road and A Grandparent Voice blog. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Viewpoints expressed in the article are the work of the author. The Daily Advocate does not endorse these viewpoints or the independent activities of the author.