Looking Back ~ Looking Ahead ~ and Heroes along the Way

Looking back…. Normally, at this time of year, this newsletter and the Celebrating All Abilities Facebook page would be filled with fun holiday activities, and trainings and seminars of every type stretching out into the spring. As we know, all that came to a screeching halt on Friday, March 13, 2020, when Governor Northam ordered the temporary closure of schools which turned into the rest of the school year. I believe that the Governor and the school districts across Virgina did the best they could under the unprecedented conditions, and most schools did open again for in-person learning this fall, only to revert to virtual learning again a few weeks later and for the forseeable future.

Heroes along the way include, of course doctors, nurses and all the hospital and emergency personnel who put their own lives at risk to care for us. I still tear up when I think of the thousands of people, every day at their windows, cheering and clapping for these heroes, on the streets of New York and around the world. Teachers are definitely heroes; they figured out how to coordinate Live and Virtual learning and still keep their kids engaged. Community members worked at food pantries, checked on their neighbors, delivered meals and made masks. Before masks became readily available and a fashion accessory, our volunteer group here in Virginia Beach made several thousand to distribute to essential workers so that emergency workers would be able to have the all-important N95 masks.

I also count as heroes, the millions of people who turned out to vote; by mail, early in-person and on election day. I volunteered at several early polling stations in Virginia Beach and was always amazed at the patience and good humor of those waiting in the sometimes very long lines, while of course, wearing their masks. Parents – I think we can agree – are the most unsung heroes. They juggled multiple tasks, working from home,  learning the “new math,” and solving endless children/student crises. Perhaps, most significantly, they developed an unbounded admiration and respect for their children’s teachers!

Looking ahead … to a time when the excruciating numbers of the death toll due to Covid will start to fall and flatten due to the vaccine that is around the corner. Those scientists are also heroes, their round-the-clock efforts have achieved this vaccine in record time. In fact, as I write this, I’m watching the discussions of the massive logistics involved in getting the vaccine out the to the world.

Also thinking ahead to vacations, parties, concerts, sporting events and getting together with families and friends. Till then, be safe, and wear your mask.

Laura – 

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