A Moment in My Life – Tuesday, February 23, 2021
One of my girlfriends texted me a moment ago thanking me for a card that I sent her. She said it made her happy because she gets little contact, thanks to Covid-19. Every experience is new for her this year since she became an orphan recently. I guess, regardless of your age, when you lose your last parent, you are an orphan. She was the caregiver for her father during his final years, making this shelter-in-place that much harder for her. I know her loneliness and the void that she has been feeling very well. Holidays and unique markers hit home the hardest. It may not be the same markers for everybody, but we all have them. That goes for many people isolated thanks to Covid-19 preventing gatherings and visitations. Dr. Jen Ashton said that people are suffering from “skin hunger.” That’s a new concept for me, but it makes a lot of sense. People need human contact. A daily hug goes a long way. A year without human touch is a long time. I feel it.
Since we can’t give or receive hugs for who knows how much longer, we need to get creative. Luckily, there are alternatives to letting others know we care and are thinking about them. Unlike me, not everybody is big on social media. I love social media. I am thrilled when my peeps post, and I get to enjoy whatever it is that they are doing vicariously. My day brightens upon seeing that life goes on despite the pandemic, our trials and sufferings, and even loss. My world would be a very lonely and sad place without social media. You might have to visit me at the looney farm after the pandemic ends.
We can always use ideas. I’ll share some here, and I welcome your suggestions, too. Feel free to share your thoughts. Here are some creative ways to keep in touch: text, email, phone, social distanced walk dates, virtual dinners, drop off food, errand runs, grocery shopping, and of course, the good old fashion pen to paper—a card or a letter.
I’m a huge fan of texting. It’s such a quick and easy way to chat or check-in. Since I’m hundreds of miles from my family, my sisters and I have an ongoing group chat where we check in daily. It makes it so easy for us to keep in touch. Email is another option, as is a phone call. Some people prefer the old fashion ink and stationery, and some are super artistic and creative, making it more a gift than a piece of mail. These days video calls are an excellent alternative to meeting face-to-face or talking on the phone. Sometimes I think the timing of this pandemic was good, thanks to technology.
Every time my friend Carol goes shopping, she shops for her elderly neighbor and her elderly mother, too. Some of us have dropped off meals at each other’s homes, and that’s one way of making up for not dining out with each other. Other friends have weekly family dinners virtually together via Zoom or FaceTime. Some friends walk together, socially distanced, and that’s one way of hanging out safely. One day outdoor dining will resume. I’m looking forward to that as I miss being with my peeps. One dear friend has already invited me to a fresco lunch on her patio. I am so looking forward to that. Until more openings resume, there are many alternatives to keep the love flowing. It doesn’t matter what we do as long as we reach out and let someone know that we care regularly by spreading a touch of kindness.