I never thought in my lifetime that I’d see…
A day when we couldn’t go to church.
A day when our children couldn’t attend school, but would have to continue their education from our home.
A day when all school activities would be cancelled.
A day when graduating high school seniors couldn’t have a traditional graduation ceremony.
A day when cities would take down basketball rims at the local park so children couldn’t play together.
A day when children playing together at the community playgrounds was frowned upon and even enforced in some communities.
A day when I couldn’t go out to eat with my family and have a sit-down meal at any of our fantastic local dining establishments.
A day when I couldn’t get a haircut at a salon or barbershop. Our dog can’t even get a haircut!
A day when I couldn’t shop at clothing stores.
A day when I couldn’t watch a movie at our local movie theater.
A day when I couldn’t have friends or family over at my house. I sure do miss beating my neighbor Eric in ping pong, and I hope he sees this.
A day when I couldn’t attend fire department meetings, chamber of commerce board meetings, or newspaper conferences. Meetings by video are simply not even comparable.
A day when I wasn’t sure if there’d be toilet paper available at the grocery store. The supply has started to catch up to the demand.
A day when our newspaper waited to hear whether we were considered an essential business and could stay open.
A day when gas prices would drop to what I recall in 1997, but I had no place to go. However, I have noticed a lot of “Sunday drivers” not just on Sundays. People just want to go somewhere to see something besides their living room.
A day when a single cough scared people.
A day when a disease would politically polarize a nation.
And, yet here we are… living through a historical moment.
As we reopen the economy, I sure hope that we are not forced to revisit this long list.
I sense that the stay-at-home order has been physically and emotionally taxing on many people.
Most Minnesotans were onboard right out of the gate, but public support for isolation has been waning in recent weeks.
Along with the economy tanking, we have been forced to limit our social interaction. Social distancing has led to loneliness, and that’s not good for our mental health.
I look forward to a day when we talk about COVID-19 like it was a historic Minnesota winter blizzard, because then it will be in our rearview mirror.