If someone told me a year ago that this would be happening, I would have never believed them. As our country watched what was happening in China, I think there was a sense of unease here, but mostly it seemed like everyone thought we would be fine. We are the United States of America after all. Things like widespread deadly viruses aren't things we think about. They just don't happen here. But then it did.
The first Coronavirus case was announced in the United States. Even though all along I think I knew it was inevitable, the pit in my stomach I felt that day was unexpected. Still, I felt like it wasn't really a big deal. They'd be isolated and that would be the end of it. Maybe I was in denial or maybe I'm just really naïve (I do live in Indiana), but everyday since, something has happened or been announced that has made me question the comfort and security I've always known.
Our local store started limiting the number of medicines and sanitizing products we could buy. I have three children at home so I made sure to buy extra fever medicine and some cleaning wipes. No big deal right? Then almost overnight things started selling out. I was shocked to see the empty aisles and people stocking up on supplies that could last them for years.
My husband watched an elderly man standing in the empty toilet paper aisle and said it was heartbreaking. Then I heard that the entire state of Ohio had closed their schools. This really couldn't be happening. I thought they were overreacting. Children aren't even getting the virus! I thought of all of the school employees, all of the parents, all of the businesses that schools being in session depend on. The next day, our district closed. A few days later and Indiana is closing all bars and restaurants.
I guess I saw this coming, although this time instead of shock, it was a sense of sadness. All of the owners, the waitresses, the families that would be impacted by this. And I was angry. There are so many unanswered questions. Did China start this intentionally? Was this some horrible way to destroy everything our country has accomplished? I was even unsettled by how much control I felt our government had over us. I became sorry for our people. I am sorry for our President. I am sorry for everything American's are experiencing right now.
Will my grandparents be okay? Will my parents' 401k's be okay? What will the effects of this be on my children? I feel for every child with their brand new baseball helmet and bat, hearing that the season is canceled. Every senior that has worked for Valedictorian that won't get to stand at graduation. Every girl that will miss her senior prom. There are countless examples of things that each family and person will endure, that to them will be devastating.
I have come to accept that this is real. This is actually happening here. My family will do all we can to help minimize the spread of this disease and help our country recover as soon as possible. In the end, I know that we will all be okay. We can all take a step back, slow down, and remember what is important. Let's enjoy our time with our families and pray for everyone that is being impacted. We will get through this.