To say recent events have added stress to our lives would be an understatement.

Schools closing, near blanket uncertainty about our economic future and grave threats to our health or the wellbeing of our loved ones. All those extra worries, and many more, already have taken a toll on many of us.

They weigh on us each day as we attempt to adapt to a new norm that is anything but normal.

That’s why we are making an extra effort to check on our friends, neighbors and loved ones who may struggle with extra anxiety. That doesn’t mean breaking our social distancing commitments, because social distance really means physical space.

Sure, it takes a little more effort to maintain healthy social relationships while adhering to the physical constraints necessary to combat the spread of the novel coronavirus pandemic. But the massive advances in technology some of us have found somewhat invasive in recent years enable us unprecedented connectedness without physical interaction.

We have joined many of our friends, neighbors and coworkers in using video meeting platforms to have eye-to-eye conversations even as we face restrictions on travel and gathering.

Families are finding ways to come together for stay-at-home birthdays, and friends are hosting video happy hours instead of meeting at area restaurants and pubs to close the work week.

None of these arrangements is ideal, but they’re what we have. For now.

It is in these times of challenge that our commitment not to leave one another behind is most important. We will make extra efforts — something so simple as an extra call or text message — in the coming weeks to check on those around us who may struggle with the distance.

We encourage you to do the same.

It’s likely — if the pandemic’s progression in other countries is any indication — things will become more difficult, more grave, before we reach a plateau.

History tells us we, our nation, will rise to meet even the most insurmountable challenges. We have no doubt we will rise to meet this adversity as well, the same way we have overcome others.

Together.

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