I have not written about him in quite some time, but that doesn’t mean I don’t think of him every day. Truthfully, he’s not really a “him,” but rather an “it,” a horrible life-changing and oftentimes also life-ending “it.”
It’s the thing that creeps through the shadows of night, yet boldly rampages through the countries, cities, streets and our homes during the day. And when it strikes, it leaves behind the sounds of hacking and gasping for air, the beeps of machines lined up by bedsides and the wailing, mournful cries of those left standing in its wake.
When we first began this shrouded era of the pandemic, there were many who scoffed at it, labeled it a story of conspiracy designed to cause fear and disruption. They were right about what it would cause, but that list falls short. They were completely wrong about the fictional foundation of the virus. It is real. It is here. And it is undeniably and powerfully persistent.
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) predicts that by Oct. 16, 2021, we will have lost 736,000 husbands, wives, fathers, mothers, sisters, brothers and children to COVID 19.
Far too many homes have cats and dogs waiting by the door for their companions to return, empty chairs at dinner tables, thoughts left unshared, messages unsent, hugs unreturned. The pain and suffering felt by those who succumbed to COVID-19+ is matched by the devastated hearts and homes of those left behind.
But deep in the dark and gloomy shadows of COVID, there is a light of hope. It might seem faint, it might appear to flicker, not yet full of energy and support, but the light is here all the same. And that light is made stronger by prayers and science.
If we follow the light, follow the guidance offered by those who legitimately know the answers, then one day, I believe, we can step into a new world without masks, hand sanitizer and social distancing. Those things will become less prevalent because of the power and protection of vaccinations and boosters. The inoculations are a small price to pay for the rewards that can be earned by getting them.
We are all tired, I know, but this COVID monster is relentless. We cannot give up the fight. If you have not been vaccinated, please consider doing so if you can. If you have any questions, there is a wealth of information out there. You can make an appointment with your doctor or a local health care provider, call or visit your local pharmacy, and also visit www.cdc.gov. We cannot give up the fight.
Written and submitted by Amy Randall-McSorley for The Circleville Herald. The views of this column may not necessarily reflect that of the newspaper.