/In this together 

In this together 

By Sue Tiffin

We’re all in this together.

It’s a mantra that has been repeated around the world around the countryaround the province around the county around our towns as our worldencounters the spread of COVID-19 a virus which can make any of us feel awful and poses exceptional risk to our most vulnerable and to thestability of our health-care system.
It might not feel as thoughwe’re all in this together because we’re staying apart. It might feelisolating. It might exacerbate anxiety. It might make us feel helplessand inconvenienced and either busier or bored than we would like to be.

But as it always does in times of joy or sorrow the community is pullingtogether. While you might be at home not having seen friends andfamilies or seeing the familiar faces in passing that make living in asmall town so charming community members have been learning technology organizing and sharing both live and pre-recorded videos online to keep us connected.

Meghan Reid of Just Movement Fitness has beenbroadcasting exercise videos from her living room to keep us moving.Nancy Therrien Jaime Bilodeau – alongside little Holly Carpenter – andRob Muir have been broadcasting Haliburton County Public Librarystorytimes into our homes from their own homes. Brent Coltman – who youcan read about in next week’s Minden Times – started a Facebook pagecalled Music From Home that quickly gathered more than 1800 peoplemany of them local in one place to share songs with each other evenwhen in different places.

Being apart means parents and teacherswill be working closer than they ever have before to ensure theeducation of our children is not drastically interrupted during a timethat can be frightening for our youngest community members.

ArchieStouffer Elementary School has been calling students to action to helpfrom wherever they are decorating windows with heart decorations forfrontline workers or being sure to call someone who might feel alone.We’re all learning together sometimes as we go to adapt be morepatient and get creative about how we work shop and help and celebrate each other from a distance.

And even while apart we are helpingand celebrating each other. Staying home means the people in ourcommunity who are still going to work to keep us safe and supported –doctors nurses first responders pharmacy staff public healthofficials other health-care professionals grocery store staff localgovernment officials volunteers cleaning and janitorial staff foodsuppliers restaurant staff bank employees and those working in thetransportation industry – will be safer with less exposure to thepublic.

Remember this when you feel at your most lonely: we’re all in this together. We’re all feeling the  stress the worry theanticipatory grief. And one day when we’re physically together againwe will all remember how we had to be apart to get through it togetherand we’ll be closer than ever before.