As more and more people become vaccinated and Spring arrives, there appears to be a sense of optimism that we can go back to a normal, pre-COVID world.
The reality is our normal may look vastly different for a while. As cases of COVID -19 still rise across the country, health care professionals and officials from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) appear to have a better handle on the treatment of it, and fewer deaths are occurring. Still, the vaccines give us hope that this could all be behind us soon.
If you know me well, you know that I’m an eternal optimist. But I’m struggling with the thought of what normal is. My fear is that we all might be disappointed with what normal will look like in the immediate future.
So, let’s talk about it. Being prepared with realistic expectations might be helpful in predicting what our new normal is.
Realistically, many people will not opt to get the vaccination. That is their decision, (no judgment here). I can only hope and pray they have that conversation with their physician. If people continue getting vaccinated at the current rate, herd immunity is possible by summer. Refer to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) for more information.
If herd immunity is achieved, it does not mean that everything will be behind us and the challenges of COVID-19 will be behind us. Life still may not look the same for quite some time, but it will hopefully be better than this past year!
Things we still need to do that will help us navigate through this post-pandemic era.
- We might still be wearing masks in public for a little longer.
- You might want to wait before booking that trip to other areas, especially areas that might still be at high risk.
- Avoid large crowds as much as possible, stay close to your family. I know about a dozen people that are planning their weddings, graduation parties, proms, showers, reunions, sports events, and all the fun stuff we love. Be careful. If you must celebrate and I know we all want to, keep it small. Lead by example.
- Be responsible for your safety and the safety of those you care about. Remember you have a compromised immune system. There is still so much more we do not know.
- Be real, what we want and what we need are two different things.
- Technology is our new reality. I know we are tired of it, but it is our friend, and it has seen us through the storm.
- Washing your hands is still a priority!
- This would be the time for you to follow up on your medical wellbeing. Many of us have been trapped in our homes and put off visiting our docs. Get checked out, get those labs done you’ve been putting off.
- The sun may be our enemy but right now the fresh air will do us all good. Use your sunscreen and other protective measures but enjoy some fresh air!
- Most of all, be thankful. We made it through the storm and over 500,000 did not.
Take it slow. If we are rushed to get back to our old way of life, we will self-destruct. Be part of the solution.