If you asked Oxford citizens in January what they were planning to do in April, they would likely tell you about their plans to attend Double Decker or an Ole Miss baseball game. Now, most of us are working from home, teaching our children, caring for our families and dealing with isolation as best we can. All the while, we’re wondering when we can get back to “normal.”
While social distancing is necessary to preserve public health, it’s still shocking. My first wake-up call was when the NCAA canceled March Madness. This cancellation signaled the beginning of many more public closures that have now wreaked havoc on the economy, our day-to-day lives and changed the way we contribute to our communities. Families have had to cancel weddings, birthday parties and funerals, preventing us from celebrating or grieving together. It seems as though the closing down of businesses and canceling of events has spread as fast as the virus itself.
As we are stuck home, many are struggling financially, caring for the elderly and looking after neighbors. Meanwhile, healthcare professionals and first responders are risking their lives to save the lives of others. Attorneys are filing petitions to local, state and federal courts, passionately advocating for the release of those in jails awaiting trial who cannot afford to bond out. Mental health counselors are using telemedicine to treat patients experiencing anxiety and depression caused by isolation.
I want to salute not only those on the frontlines fighting the direct impact of the virus but also those who have stepped up to make sure our community stays afloat during these trying times. Whether it is truckers increasing their hours to deliver groceries to our local store, employees at supermarkets stocking the shelves or local restaurants that continue to provide curbside service, we thank you for bravely doing what you can to minimize the struggle we are facing. And while our day-to-day lives have changed drastically, I’m proud of the way our community has come together.
In my articles, I have often talked about the importance of taking care of your mental and physical health. I want to remind you that now is not the time to neglect your wellbeing. Summer is around the corner, and while things may never be back to the way they were, there will be a “new normal,” and we will adjust. In the meantime, take care of yourself. Continue your daily exercise habits or develop an exercise habit that you enjoy and stick with it.
A veteran of the U.S. Marine Corps, Amy Pietrowski is an Oxford-based attorney at Pietrowski Law Practice, working primarily in DUI Defense, Criminal Defense and Family Law. She can be reached at email@example.com. View her complete bio: https://apietrowski.com/about/