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COVID-19: Living In Slow Motion

I don’t know about you, but this COVID viral infection pandemic has me feeling like I am living in slow- motion.

I also know that younger people probably expect slow-motion from me because of my advanced age. I am, by definition, moving pretty slow. I walk slowly with a limp, I get out of a chair more slowly these days, it takes me more time to get my wallet out when I am at the grocery store.

But, I am not talking about “slow-motion” as a matter of aging. I am speaking about time itself — it seems like the clock has slowed down and things are taking forever to happen. “When will we have a vaccine?” “When will I be able to hug my grandchildren like I used to?” “When can we sit down and enjoy a big family Thanksgiving again?”

All of this is taking forever to come about.

As human beings and, especially, as Americans, we like to keep things moving along. Dynamic is good, and slow is bad. If things are standing still, we feel we are moving in the wrong direction. We want and need our holidays. We need the sports seasons of baseball, track, football, soccer and hockey.

When will we actually be able to have the Masters’ Golf Tournament again where the “patrons” can attend? When will fans be able to return to the Buffalo Bills’ stadium? The Japanese think that they can pull off the Olympics next year, but will they be able to?

The airlines want the airports to be full again, but when will that be safe? I want to walk into a crowded restaurant again with friends, but when will that happen?

For the past 20 years or so, every year, a couple we know have come down from Rochester for a holiday dinner with friends from here. We receive our orders as to what the dress of the night will be and whether the dinner will have a certain theme. We always know that the food and comradery will be terrific, and e-mails build up in anticipation of the event. We have marked this date on our calendars for years– but not this year. It feels like a part of Christmas has been pulled out from under us.

The most insidious thing about this virus is that it attacks togetherness. It upsets the timing and the timetable of how we congregate. The desire to be together becomes our enemy and not our friend.

Now that we see vaccines coming, we know that there will be an end to this. But, let’s be honest. This pandemic thing has been a real “bummer.” It seems like it will never end, though it will. It makes me feel that I am in a time warp, that I am walking and living in slow-motion. I know we have to patient, but I can’t wait for it to end so that we can return to what we used to know as “normal” in our personal and family lives. Despite the fact that these winter months could be our most challenging — the sooner that we can get together again, the better!

To wit, I think we might all agree with a preacher I once knew who always ended his sermons with the words–“Let all God’s people, say ‘Amen!'”

Rolland Kidder is a Stow resident.

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