This was on my Facebook. I just thought some people would like to read this article and see that there are many things that married couples may face. Possibly some people will realize that they aren’t the only ones that have to face trials and tribulations.
So as a white woman married to a black man and raising a biracial child I’ve had to unlearn a lot of things. I’ve also had to LEARN twice as much. I’ve had to become aware and start to notice things my mind never would have before. My husband, Walter, and I were recently discussing these things and here’s a list of all the things we’ve encountered:
-I have to drive basically anytime we are leaving the Dayton area. We don’t talk about it each time, we just both know that if we are leaving our general “safe” area and heading to smaller town Ohio roads I’m the one driving.
-I have to handle store clerks, returns, getting documents signed, anything with any federal building or administrative work, I get further with any type of “paperwork” thing that needs handled, people listen to me and are much more agreeable than with him.
-The chances that we find a Black or Interracial couple on a greeting card are SLIM. Unless you want to give the same Black Couple card every year, which we have . There are hundreds of white couples to choose from though!
-My husband goes out of his way to be nice and talk to EVERYONE. Not because he’s a people person, but because he has learned that a 6’5 Black man intimidates people and so he overcompensates by being overly friendly so people won’t be afraid of him.
– If Walter is pushing the cart I always have to have my receipt ready when leaving the store.
-None of our neighbors thought we owned our home, multiple neighbors stopped my father and asked him if he was the new landlord for us. Because of course, the old white man must have purchased the home. Not only do we own our home, it’s fully paid off, we have no mortgage and we paid for it BY OURSELVES.
-It took us YEARS to find a church without racist undertones and low key racist members, YEARS!
-When doll shopping our daughter gets 25 white options and 1-2 black or mixed race doll options.
-The same people who stop us daily to say how adorable our daughter is, are the same people who would cross the street if Walter was walking alone.
-We avoid all places with confederate flags.
-If we go to Bob Evans (or any restaurant that caters to “seniors”) too early we are met with a lot of stares, the old racists eat between 4-5pm.
-When Walter goes to a playground with our daughter he constantly stays by her side, if not he gets stares and people wonder what the “big black man” is doing on the park bench.
-Walter is concerned our Black Lives Matter sign by the door will make us a target when he is not home so he asked me to remove it
Now this post isn’t to make people say “oh poor you, I’m so sorry” etc etc. we have a wonderful life and are thankful for it. But…changes need to happen. This is just a small glimpse into the intentional and unintentional racism that happens everywhere, all the time. I want a better world for our daughter so I’m happy that things are changing. I know a lot of you are tired of the protests and tired of the changes and tired of people complaining. Well I’m tired of having to find a different gas station when the one we drive by has two trucks with confederate flags and 6 white boys in sleeveless shirts standing around outside. I’m tired of my husband having to talk to everyone and never complain even when they mess up his order 10,000 times, I’m tired of driving Damn near everywhere, I’m tired of the sick feeling I get when a cop pulls behind us, I’m tired of having to worry anytime my husband has to work OT and leaves in the middle of the night, I’m tired and I’ve only been on this ride 7 years, imagine a lifetime of this!
-edited to Add our Picture because I hope when you see those images on the news of riots and destruction you also remember that the majority of those protesting and fighting for rights are just regular folks like us who want our hearts to be seen. Peaceful loving families who just want a better world.
This was on Facebook. These tips are worth reading, and then decide which one or ones might work for you. Unfortunately, there is always the chance that none of them will work for you. I hope one or two of them will though.
Sweaty Face Mask? 5 Tips to Keep Cool While Covered Up
Staying safe and comfortable as temperatures rise
by Andy Markowitz, AARP, June 25, 2020|Comments: 20
With health authorities continuing to urge face-covering in public to curb the spread of COVID-19, we’ve become familiar with the minor irritants of wearing masks: chafed ears, foggy glasses, snapped straps. The arrival of summer takes the potential discomfort up a notch, trapping sweat and heat under our facial sheaths.
“As physicians, when we are wearing masks for long periods of time, for example in surgery or during a procedure, you’ll notice we keep the rooms what patients call ‘uncomfortably cold,’” says Gregory Poland, a physician and vaccine researcher at the Mayo Clinic. “There’s a reason for that.”
Fortunately, there are ways to stay cool or, at least, cooler while masked up. Here are five tips from experts for more comfortably keeping your respiratory droplets in check.
1. Choose the right fabric
A light, breathable material like cotton will likely keep your face cooler than medical and N95 masks made from synthetic materials, and in the right configuration can be effective in preventing contagion, according to new research by Taher Saif, a professor of mechanical science and engineering at the University of Illinois.
Saif’s team tested 10 common fabrics, from 100 percent cotton to polyester and silk blends, to see which best balance comfort and droplet-blocking impermeability. The “sweet spot,” he says, is a two-layer mask made from a cotton T-shirt, which comes close to matching a surgical mask’s efficiency in stopping potentially infectious droplets from coughs and sneezes and is about twice as breathable.
All-cotton tested best, but up to 40 percent polyester will do the job, Saif says. “I’m not a cloth expert. I just buy things from Walmart and Target,” he adds with a laugh. “Our study showed that if you have these layers on top of your mouth and nose, you don’t have to have an official mask where it goes with the elastic behind your ears. You can just wrap it around your nose and mouth, like a bandana.”
Lighter, softer cotton coverings can also help you avoid chafing, heat rash or inflaming a skin condition like eczema or dermatitis, says Carrie Kovarik, an associate professor of dermatology at the University of Pennsylvania’s Perelman School of Medicine and a member of the American Academy of Dermatology’s COVID-19 task force.
“They make masks out of a lot of different material, so you want to feel it and make sure it’s something that feels soft against your skin,” she says. “A lot of people are making masks for fashion, they want it to look nice and pretty on the face, but make sure it feels good.”
2. Keep it dry
Cotton traps less air and moisture than standard medical and industrial masks, and it’s more absorbent, but if it gets damp due to breathing and sweating it can be less effective in filtering respiratory particles, not to mention uncomfortable and abrasive to the skin.
“Try to stay in well-ventilated locations to keep air and vapor mixing, which can help evaporate any extra water (and also keep the rest of your skin/body feeling cooler),” says Jennifer Vanos, a biometeorologist at Arizona State University who studies the effects of heat on health.
Vanos also suggests trying masks made of especially absorbent materials like bamboo, which “can absorb up to three times the amount of water as cotton.” Hemp also wicks moisture well, and washable hemp-blend masks are widely available online, although like bamboo they tend to cost more than cotton face coverings.
3. Time trips to beat the heat
Avoid going out at the hottest parts of the day and for extended periods. Stop at home between errands if you can, to cool off and doff your mask. When you do have to be out, stay well-hydrated and seek the shade.
Being cognizant of the heat is about much more than keeping your mask fresh. “We have major issues every summer with heat exhaustion and heat stroke and heat-related deaths,” the Mayo Clinic’s Poland says, and older adults are “definitely at increased risk.”
An ice pack or damp cloth applied to the head or neck can help you cool off — just take care not to get your mask wet or touch your face. Poland notes other heat hacks he’s observed traveling in parts of Asia where mask-wearing has long been routine.
“They more often carry a hand-powered fan or small, battery-powered fan,” he says. That trick comes with a caveat — if you are “around a lot of people’s exhalation, you’re just fanning that air at yourself” — but with sufficient social distancing you may be able to use a fan to stay comfy while still protecting yourself.
“The other thing you see a lot of people doing in Asian countries during the summer is shading themselves with an umbrella,” Poland says. “Turns out that things like that actually do help.”
4. Skip the makeup
Heat and perspiration mixed with makeup or oily skin care products makes for a gunky mess under your mask. “You don’t have the ability to have sweat evaporate when you have the mask on. It all sits there and collects,” says Kovarik, the dermatology professor. That clogs pores and contributes to the lower-face skin eruptions that have been dubbed “maskne,” a combination of the words mask and acne.
Kovarik recommends masking up with your face clean, save perhaps for a bit of moisturizer (preferably with some SPF, if you plan to be out long). “Creams that have dimethicone in them are a good moisturizer but also is a barrier cream, so it creates some protection between your skin and the mask,” she says. “It will actually create a barrier to the friction.”
Another change to make to your skin care regimen: Avoid products with retinoids or salicylic acid, which some older people use to diminish wrinkles or sun damage.
“Those can be very, very irritating if used under occlusion or under some kind of covering. We don’t want to put them under the mask,” Kovarik says. “If [people] are using those products, it’s better to put them on at night and then wash your face in the morning.”
5. Bring a spare
If you can’t keep your mask from getting icky and sticky, there’s no better remedy than swapping it for another. “I recommend people do that anyway,” whatever the weather, Poland says. “When you’re outside with the mask on, that mask has a limited lifespan.”
On especially hot and humid days, pack multiple masks, recommends Vanos, the heat expert. Just make sure to follow the other CDC safety recommendations when changing masks, like avoiding crowds and washing or sanitizing your hands.
“If you really need to remove it to cool off, move away from people, cool off, maybe switch the mask to a new one, and then go back,” Vanos says.
This was on my Facebook. It’s possible to see some infractions to the COVID-19 quarantine just in the first picture below. One of my cousins’ friends and her family did everything that the quarantine stated should be done. The Wife/Mother ended up with COVID-19 and her husband and children had to go someplace else while the Wife/Mother recuperated. Luckily she did get better and nobody else came down with the COVID-19 in her family.
How Exactly Do You Catch Covid-19? There Is a Growing Consensus
Surface contamination and fleeting encounters are less of a worry than close-up, person-to-person interactions for extended periods
Six months into the coronavirus crisis, there’s a growing consensus about a central question: How do people become infected?
It’s not common to contract Covid-19 from a contaminated surface, scientists say. And fleeting encounters with people outdoors are unlikely to spread the coronavirus.
Instead, the major culprit is close-up, person-to-person interactions for extended periods. Crowded events, poorly ventilated areas and places where people are talking loudly—or singing, in one famous case—maximize the risk.
These emerging findings are helping businesses and governments devise reopening strategies to protect public health while getting economies going again. That includes tactics like installing Plexiglas barriers, requiring people to wear masks in stores and other venues, using good ventilation systems and keeping windows open when possible.
Two recent large studies showed that wide-scale lockdowns—stay-at-home orders, bans on large gatherings and business closures—prevented millions of infections and deaths around the world. Now, with more knowledge in hand, cities and states can deploy targeted interventions to keep the virus from taking off again, scientists and public-health experts said.
“We should not be thinking of a lockdown, but of ways to increase physical distance,” said Tom Frieden, chief executive of Resolve to Save Lives, a nonprofit public-health initiative. “This can include allowing outside activities, allowing walking or cycling to an office with people all physically distant, curbside pickup from stores, and other innovative methods that can facilitate resumption of economic activity without a rekindling of the outbreak.”
The group’s reopening recommendations include widespread testing, contact tracing and isolation of people who are infected or exposed.
A Recipe for Infection
Getting the Covid-19 virus involves three steps.
Coughing, talking and breathing creates virus-carrying droplets of various sizes.
Enough virus has to make itself over to you or build up around you over time to trigger an infection.
The virus has to make its way into your respiratory tract and use the ACE-2 receptors there to enter cells and replicate.
Illustration: Erik Brynildsen/THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
One important factor in transmission is that seemingly benign activities like speaking and breathing produce respiratory bits of varying sizes that can disperse along air currents and potentially infect people nearby.
Health agencies have so far identified respiratory-droplet contact as the major mode of Covid-19 transmission. These large fluid droplets can transfer virus from one person to another if they land on the eyes, nose or mouth. But they tend to fall to the ground or on other surfaces pretty quickly.
Some researchers say the new coronavirus can also be transmitted through aerosols, or minuscule droplets that float in the air longer than large droplets. These aerosols can be directly inhaled.
That’s what may have happened at a restaurant in Guangzhou, China, where an infected diner who was not yet ill transmitted the virus to five others sitting at adjacent tables. Ventilation in the space was poor, with exhaust fans turned off, according to one study looking at conditions in the restaurant.
Aerosolized virus from the patient’s breathing or speaking could have built up in the air over time and strong airflow from an air-conditioning unit on the wall may have helped recirculate the particles in the air, according to authors of the study, which hasn’t yet been peer-reviewed.
Sufficient ventilation in the places people visit and work is very important, said Yuguo Li, one of the authors and an engineering professor at the University of Hong Kong. Proper ventilation—such as forcing air toward the ceiling and pumping it outside, or bringing fresh air into a room—dilutes the amount of virus in a space, lowering the risk of infection.
Another factor is prolonged exposure. That’s generally defined as 15 minutes or more of unprotected contact with someone less than 6 feet away, said John Brooks, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s chief medical officer for the Covid-19 response. But that is only a rule of thumb, he cautioned. It could take much less time with a sneeze in the face or other intimate contact where a lot of respiratory droplets are emitted, he said.
At a March 10 church choir practice in Washington state, 87% of attendees were infected, said Lea Hamner, an epidemiologist with the Skagit County public-health department and lead author of a study on an investigation that warned about the potential for “superspreader” events, in which one or a small number of people infect many others.
Members of the choir changed places four times during the 2½-hour practice, were tightly packed in a confined space and were mostly older and therefore more vulnerable to illness, she said. All told, 53 of 61 attendees at the practice were infected, including at least one person who had symptoms. Two died.
Several factors conspired, Ms. Hamner said. When singing, people can emit many large and small respiratory particles. Singers also breathe deeply, increasing the chance they will inhale infectious particles.
Similar transmission dynamics could be at play in other settings where heavy breathing and loud talking are common over extended periods, like gyms, musical or theater performances, conferences, weddings and birthday parties. Of 61 clusters of cases in Japan between Jan. 15 and April 4, many involved heavy breathing in close proximity, such as karaoke parties, cheering at clubs, talking in bars and exercising in gyms, according to a recent study in the journal Emerging Infectious Diseases.
The so-called attack rate—the percentage of people who were infected in a specific place or time—can be very high in crowded events, homes and other spaces where lots of people are in close, prolonged contact.
An estimated 10% of people with Covid-19 are responsible for about 80% of transmissions, according to a study published recently in Wellcome Open Research. Some people with the virus may have a higher viral load, or produce more droplets when they breathe or speak, or be in a confined space with many people and bad ventilation when they’re at their most infectious point in their illness, said Jamie Lloyd-Smith, a University of California, Los Angeles professor who studies the ecology of infectious diseases.
But overall, “the risk of a given infected person transmitting to people is pretty low,” said Scott Dowell, a deputy director overseeing the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s Covid-19 response. “For every superspreading event you have a lot of times when nobody gets infected.”
The attack rate for Covid-19 in households ranges between 4.6% and 19.3%, according to several studies. It was higher for spouses, at 27.8%, than for other household members, at 17.3%, in one study in China.
Rosanna Diaz lives in a three-bedroom apartment in New York City with five other family members. The 37-year-old stay-at-home mother was hospitalized with a stroke on April 18 that her doctors attributed to Covid-19, and was still coughing when she went home two days later.
She pushed to get home quickly, she said, because her 4-year-old son has autism and needed her. She kept her distance from family members, covered her mouth when coughing and washed her hands frequently. No one else in the apartment has fallen ill, she said. “Nobody went near me when I was sick,” she said.
Being outside is generally safer, experts say, because viral particles dilute more quickly. But small and large droplets pose a risk even outdoors, when people are in close, prolonged contact, said Linsey Marr, a Virginia Tech environmental engineering professor who studies airborne transmission of viruses.
No one knows for sure how much virus it takes for someone to become infected, but recent studies offer some clues. In one small study published recently in the journal Nature, researchers were unable to culture live coronavirus if a patient’s throat swab or milliliter of sputum contained less than one million copies of viral RNA.
“Based on our experiment, I would assume that something above that number would be required for infectivity,” said Clemens Wendtner, one of the study’s lead authors and head of the department of infectious diseases and tropical medicine at München Klinik Schwabing, a teaching hospital at the Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich.
He and his colleagues found samples from contagious patients with virus levels up to 1,000 times that, which could help explain why the virus is so infectious in the right conditions: It may take much lower levels of virus than what’s found in a sick patient to infect someone else.
Based on this emerging picture of contagion, some policies are changing. The standard procedure for someone who tests positive is to quarantine at home. Some cities are providing free temporary housing and social services where people who are infected can stay on a voluntary basis, to avoid transmitting the virus to family members.
The CDC recently urged Americans to keep wearing masks and maintaining a distance from others as states reopen. “The more closely you interact with others, the longer the interaction lasts, the greater the number of people involved in the interaction, the higher the risk of Covid-19 spread,” said Jay Butler, the CDC’s Covid-19 response incident manager.
If the number of Covid-19 cases starts to rise dramatically as states reopen, “more extensive mitigation efforts such as what were implemented back in March may be needed again,” a decision that would be made locally, he said.
CDC guidelines for employers whose workers are returning include requiring masks, limiting use of public transit and elevators to reduce exposure, and prohibiting hugs, handshakes and fist-bumps. The agency also suggested replacing communal snacks, water coolers and coffee pots with prepacked, single-serve items, and erecting plastic partitions between desks closer than 6 feet apart.
Current CDC workplace guidelines don’t talk about distribution of aerosols, or small particles, in a room, said Lisa Brosseau, a respiratory-protection consultant for the University of Minnesota’s Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy.
“Aerosol transmission is a scary thing,” she said. “That’s an exposure that’s hard to manage and it’s invisible.” Ensuring infected individuals stay home is important, she said, but that can be difficult due to testing constraints. So additional protocols to interrupt spread, like social distancing in workspaces and providing N95 respirators or other personal protective equipment, might be necessary as well, she said.
Some scientists say while aerosol transmission does occur, it doesn’t explain most infections. In addition, the virus doesn’t appear to spread widely through the air.
“If this were transmitted mainly like measles or tuberculosis, where infectious virus lingered in the airspace for a long time, or spread across large airspaces or through air-handling systems, I think you would be seeing a lot more people infected,” said the CDC’s Dr. Brooks.
SHARE YOUR THOUGHTS
What public-health measures do you think are called for? Join the conversation below.
Sampling the air in high-traffic areas regularly could help employers figure out who needs to get tested, said Donald Milton, professor of environmental and occupational health at the University of Maryland School of Public Health.
“Let’s say you detect the virus during lunchtime on Monday in a dining hall,” he said. “You could then reach out to people who were there during that time telling them that they need to get tested.”
Erin Bromage, a University of Massachusetts Dartmouth associate professor of biology, has been fielding questions from businesses, court systems and even therapists after a blog post he wrote titled “The Risks—Know Them—Avoid Them” went viral.
Courts are trying to figure out how to reconvene safely given that juries normally sit close together, with attorneys speaking to them up close, Dr. Bromage said. Therapists want to be able to hold in-person counseling sessions again. And businesses are trying to figure out what types of cleaning and disease-prevention methods in which to invest most heavily.
He advises that while wiping down surfaces and putting in hand-sanitizer stations in workplaces is good, the bigger risks are close-range face-to-face interactions, and having lots of people in an enclosed space for long periods. High-touch surfaces like doorknobs are a risk, but the virus degrades quickly so other surfaces like cardboard boxes are less worrisome, he said. “Surfaces and cleaning are important, but we shouldn’t be spending half of our budget on it when they may be having only a smaller effect,” he said.
Drugmaker Eli Lilly & Co. has a medical advisory panel that’s reading the latest literature on viral transmission, which it is using to develop recommendations for bringing back the company’s own workers safely.
To go into production facilities, some of which are in operation now, scientists must don multiple layers of personal protective equipment, including gloves, masks, goggles and coveralls. That’s not abnormal for drug-development settings, said Lilly Chief Scientific Officer Daniel Skovronsky. “The air is extensively filtered. There’s lots of protection,” he said.
The places he worries about are the break rooms, locker rooms and security checkpoints, where people interact. Those are spaces where the company has instituted social-distancing measures by staggering the times they are open and how many people can be there at once. Only a few cafeterias are open, and those that are have socially distanced seating. In bathrooms, only half the stalls are available to cut down on the number of people.
“We’ll never be more open than state guidelines,” Dr. Skovronsky said, but “we’re often finding ourselves being more restrictive because we’re following the numbers.”
This was on Facebook. This notice is so correct, but it goes for every person you are kin to, every person that you love, every person that makes you happy, in other words everybody you know. Life is short. Live it to the fullest. Once the light that belongs to anybody that you know, goes out, it goes out for ever.
There are some other people that tell me that I say “I love you.” to too many people and that I say it too much. It is my personal belief that every time you talk to one of the people that you love, you should end by saying, “I love you.” even before saying “Good Bye.” And if it’s someone you love quite a bit, it isn’t wrong to say, “I love you more than you know.” I do this most of the time when I just make comments on their Facebook posts.
You may be wondering why I do this. The answer is that NOBODY, AND I MEAN NOBODY, BUT GOD, KNOWS WHEN YOU’RE GOING TO DIE.
At this point in my life, I am in my late 60’s, and all of my Great Aunts and Great Uncles are deceased, and all of my Uncles on my Mother’s side are deceased. I’m not too sure about my Father’s side. My Father is also deceased. There have also been numerous, too many to count, friends that are deceased. All of the rest of my family lives in different states.
I have lived where I am for 46 years. There is no way to say an exact number of times that I have heard different friends, and even strangers, say after someone’s passing, “I should have told him/her how much I loved him/her.” Some of the times the statement did not have the words “how much”, but just “that I loved him/her.” (at all), “years ago”. After hearing it so much, I reached a point that I said to myself, “I don’t care how much they get annoyed with it, I’m going to at least try to let “whomever” know that I love them.
When I am told that I say “I love you” too much, I slow it down a little, but still never quit saying it to them. Saying “I love you.” is so important to me, that I even say it in my sleep. Once the person’s light goes out, it will never come back on, so my advice to everybody is that if you love somebody. let them know it. Even if you are angry with each other, swallow your pride and let them know. Even if they get upset with you again, at least you will go to bed with a clear conscience knowing that you told them, even if they did not say it back. You will go to sleep feeling good about it, instead of thinking “if (whomever) dies tonight, or if I die tonight, I know that I told the ones that I love, that I do love them, and not to forget it.
Here I will say, I’m sorry for repeating the same thing in so many different ways, but at least you can tell just how important this is to me, and hopefully now it is to you too.
There are many many people that take freedom for granted. They were born into a free nation and just figure that it has always been that way, and will always be that way in the future.
I am constantly surprised by the number of people that do not respect or appreciate our veterans. Apparently they have never paid attention to any articles, conversations, news broadcasts or anything else that has to do with our veterans.
As for myself, I have always said and posted about our veterans. I try to always let it be known that I appreciate our service people always being willing at a moments notice to defend our rights and our freedom while protecting our safety. The way I put it is this: “Even though I do not know your name, thank you for your willingness to give your life to keep America free, and for those that did give their life, Thank you for giving the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom and safety. You are appreciated and loved, and will never be forgotten.”
It is unconscionable how our veterans are treated when they return from service. I cannot imagine how a veteran feels when he/she gets home from their service to our nation, only to find out that their house has been foreclosed on and they are now homeless. It is hard to accept that a serviceman/servicewoman, living on base with their family, has to receive food stamps in order to be able to feed their family. These men/women were willing to give their life for our freedom and safety, and cannot even afford to feed their family on the money that they receive while serving our country.
I know I have repeated myself several times, but what I am saying needs to sink in to the forces that be. Not that they will be aware of what I have said here. I don’t think that it will ever even happen, but I feel that I have to keep saying it every chance I get. Sort of a like the squeaky wheel gets the oil, I’m being the squeaky wheel.
When some people begin to blame their behavior on what they hear, they need to remember this Bible quote. What it boils down to is that just because you heard something mean or dirty, or anything bad doesn’t mean you have to act on it or repeat it.
Let’s say you woke up with a terrible cough, a fever, and severe body aches. Immediately, you rush to the doctor and unfortunately, you’re diagnosed with COVID-19. For the last two weeks, you’ve been unaware that you were infected and you’ve ignored “the rules.” You’ve gotten together with some close friends for pizza, had a few people over, even visited a park and a beach. You figured, “I don’t feel sick. I have the right to keep living my normal life. No one can tell me what to do.”
With your diagnosis, you spend the next few days at home on the couch, feeling pretty crappy; but then you’re well again because you’re young, healthy and strong. Lucky you. But your best friend caught it from you during a visit to your house, and because she didn’t know she was contagious, she visited her 82-year-old grandfather, who uses oxygen tanks daily to help him breathe because he has COPD and heart failure. Now, he’s dead.
Your co-worker, who has asthma, caught it too, during your little pizza get-together. Now, he’s in the ICU, and he’s spread it to a few others in his family, too–but they won’t know that for another couple of weeks yet.
The cashier at the restaurant where you picked up the pizza carried the infection home to his wife, who has MS, which makes her immunosuppressed. She’s not as lucky as you, so she’s admitted to the hospital because she’s having trouble breathing. She may need to be placed in a medically-induced coma and intubated; she may not get to say goodbye to her loved ones. She may die surrounded by machines, with no family at her bedside.
All because you couldn’t stand the inconvenience of a mask; of staying home; of changing your familiar routines for just a little while. Because you have the right, above all others rights, to continue living your normal life and no one, I mean no one, has the right to tell you what to do.
Here’s how the pandemic has changed our manners — maybe for good
by Sarah Elizabeth Adler, AARP, May 15, 2020|Comments: 6
A firm handshake, a kiss on the cheek, the clink of glasses at a dinnertime toast — these are among the polite gestures now on hold indefinitely because of social distancing guidelines intended to keep people safe during the coronavirus outbreak.
But etiquette experts say that doesn’t mean good manners have gone by the wayside. Instead, they point to safer ways of showing respect for one another, like swapping out handshakes for head nods, that have emerged in the past few months — and that will likely remain with us for some time to come.
“Etiquette is always evolving, it’s never set in stone,” says Massachusetts-based etiquette consultant Jodi Smith. “What’s set in stone is the idea of respect for myself and respect for others.”
As long as showing respect means keeping our distance and avoiding large gatherings, here’s what Smith and others say to expect when it comes to minding your manners in the COVID-19 era:
Handshakes and greetings
Myka Meier, author of Business Etiquette Made Easy, notes that few people are likely to be shaking hands at a time when staying 6 feet apart is the norm.
Even something like an elbow bump means making contact with another person and might not be appropriate in more formal settings like business meetings.
Instead, Meier recommends two totally contactless greetings: what she calls “the grasp and greet” — clasping your hands together and putting them over your heart as you approach someone — and the “stop, drop and nod” — standing still, dropping your hands and putting them behind your back (so you’re not tempted to reach out for a handshake), then nodding to say hello.
Invitations, events and RSVPs
Many large-scale gatherings and events have already been cancelled, but if you’ve RSVP’d “yes” to something that’s still scheduled to happen, international etiquette expert Sharon Schweitzer says the rules around declining have become a bit more flexible.
“Long-standing etiquette and social graces have always dictated that if you accepted the RSVP and said you would attend, you must,” she says. “However, in light of the coronavirus, you can change your RSVP to decline if you cannot attend.”
In the case of events like weddings, she says, be sure to send a gift anyway — and change your response promptly out of respect for the host (you might also want to write a personal note expressing how much you regret having to decline).
When it comes to saying no to casual invitations, like neighbors asking you to join them 6 feet apart in their backyard, the experts recommend having a go-to script to politely decline. Smith recommends something like: “I’m so thrilled that you invited me, but I’m just not ready yet.”
Having a few stock phrases in mind can also serve you well when out and about. Schweitzer’s script for keeping your distance from a friendly passerby while walking the dog is something like: “Fluffy and I are both social distancing. Please greet us from at least 6 feet away. We look forward to seeing you after this resolves. You’ll be more than welcome to pet her then!”
EyeWolf / getty images
Masks (and more) in public
With health officials now advising that everyone wear a mask or face covering while out in public, Smith says that fashionable face coverings may become the norm as people start looking to wear masks that coordinate with their clothing.
And, she says, it wouldn’t be the first time fashion norms were shaped by public health concerns. Women of her grandmother’s generation, she notes, always wore gloves in public in part as a way of avoiding germs at a time when diseases like typhoid fever were of concern.
Of course, interacting with others with half of your face covered means losing some of the nonverbal ways we rely on to express ourselves, like smiling.
That’s where gestures come in, Smith says, since something as simple as a thumbs up or a mock salute can help you express yourself in public in the way a smile once would have.
Safety at home
We might also start to see some changes in our homes, Schweitzer says, like asking guests to remove their shoes upon entering, something that she notes is already the norm in many other cultures.
And, she says, there’s really no reason to go back to touching our glasses during a toast or blowing out birthday candles on a cake that is then served to many guests (instead, she foresees alternatives like blowing out an individual candle on your very own cupcake).
Looking to the future
Eventually, however, experts predict that most of our long-standing rituals and habits will reemerge as restrictions on our daily lives are eased.
Smith is certain, for example, that shaking hands — a gesture of goodwill that dates back as far as 5th century Greece — will become the norm in the United States once more.
“We will return to shaking hands,” she says. “It may not be until 2025, but eventually we will.”
This is from Facebook. I imagine that there are quite a few people that feel like they are failing when they are struggling. It’s very hard to understand how anybody can even think that they are not failing when the struggling gets worse and worse, and it seems like things are never going to change. I have gone through it many many times. But I have some secrets that I try to fall back on, and here lately they have worked just fine.
I love music, especially Christian music and Southern Gospel. Whenever things start going wrong, I try to sing as many songs as I can remember. This is especially true when I am alone. It’s sort of praying and singing at the same time, if you can imagine it. Music has always cheered me up. Especially the songs we sing in Church. After all the Bible says:
I looked it up on Google and this is what the results are.
Psalm 100 is the 100th psalm in the Hebrew Bible of the Book of Psalms. In English, it is translated as “Make a joyful noise unto the Lord, all ye lands.” in the King James Version (KJV), and as “O be joyful in the Lord, all ye lands” in the Book of Common Prayer (BCP).
Sometimes I try to think of really special and upbeat things to try. One of the things that I try is reading the poem, “God Has Not Promised” You will find it below. I looked this up on Google as well.
God hath not promised skies always blue,
Flower strewn pathways all our lives through;
God hath not promised sun with out rain,
Joy without sorrow, peace without pain.
But God hath promised strength for the day,
Rest for the labor, light for the way;
Grace for the trials, help from above,
Unfailing sympathy, undying love.
God hath not promised we shall not know
Toil and temptation, trouble and woe;
He hath not told us we shall not bear
Many a burden, Many a care.
God hath not promised smooth roads and wide,
Swift, easy travel, needing no guide;
Never a mountain rocky and steep,
Never a river turbid and deep.
* Public Domain in US Only.
Not everybody has everything handed to them on a silver platter. And even the ones that do seemingly have everything, could still be struggling. Struggling just shows that you are trying to accomplish whatever thing it is that you are working on.