by Jane McClure
As you can see by my picture, I still wear a mask or gaiter regularly. I work to stay up to date on vaccines and try to stay safe. During the days leading up to Christmas, it was a real challenge at times! Long lines at the store are tough to keep social distance in, especially with the folks who apparently want to see what is in your shopping basket.
And then are the huggers we all know and love, or tolerate. I’m not big on hugs because of arthritis and just sheer physical pain some days. My friends, who know how to be gentle, joke about it.
A lot of us saw family and friends over Christmas. Much as I would have enjoyed seeing two longtime pals, they wisely stayed home after one was diagnosed with COVID-19.
So here’s a timely reminder from the Minnesota Department of Health, about staying safe at this time of year:
Share laughter and love with your friends and family this holiday season, not germs. There are several respiratory illnesses spreading right now, including influenza, RSV, COVID-19, and others. You can protect yourself and others from these common illnesses by doing these things:
• Get vaccinated. Make sure you are up to date on all of your recommended vaccines, including flu and the bivalent COVID-19 vaccines.
• Stay home if you are sick.
• Cover your coughs and sneezes
• Wash your hands frequently.
• You may want to consider avoiding crowded indoor spaces and wearing a mask indoors, especially if you are at higher risk, or if you are interacting with someone at higher risk, for getting sick from one of these viruses.
• Continue to get tested for COVID-19 if you have symptoms or were exposed. Consider testing before a gathering.
Don’t rely on just one thing to prevent the spread of these illness. We need to use layers of protection to help protect ourselves, our loved ones, and our communities. More information at https://www.health.state.mn.us/
One more for direct support
I follow many disability community Facebook groups and pages. Among the many I really like is Minnesotans for Direct Support Improvements.
The group leaders recently created this post: Share Gifts of Gratitude!
Thank a community member (or two or three!) for helping to improve health, safety, and dignity throughout our many, diverse communities!
HOW: Simply create a post on their feed sharing a few words of your appreciation and why you value their efforts. Include the #MNs4DSIGratitude hashtag. Then, at the end, include a link to one of the following “thank you” videos that you think best describes them and their efforts!
THANK YOU VIDEOS
General = https://youtu.be/8o-cqi1SJtU
Investments (e.g. time, energy, talents) = https://youtu.be/7qcpnrikAr0
Inclusion = https://youtu.be/wSVKxNgQu-Y
Focus = https://youtu.be/s_GoBPkIUfE
Persistence = https://youtu.be/CfZ2JqBkxBY
Courage = https://youtu.be/vnB5Shi-QHo
THANK *YOU* FOR SHARING THE GIFT OF GRATITUDE!