Sharon Stone mug

Social distancing. Wash your hands. Cough into your elbow. Push open doors with elbows. Don’t touch your face. Stay home. Call your doctor first before going to an emergency room if you feel sick. Use sanitizing wipes. Spray handles often with Lysol.

All of these strongly advised suggestions are enough to rattle the nerves of just about anyone.

My concern goes out to every small business owner and their employees. My thoughts also are with every first responder, nurse, doctor, lab technician and firefighter who are all working through their own fears and taking extra precautions to provide necessary services to the community.

As an employee at a local news outlet as well as a small business owner here in town, I can tell you that we all need to take a deep breath, preferably outside in the sunshine, and stay level headed. We need to support each other. We also need to monitor our elderly loved ones.

These next few weeks will challenge us all. Some of us will continue making deliveries, or working at the office while others are forced to work remotely. Some people will be laid off.

Our first responders and everyone in the medical field are rising to the challenge even though they don’t know what they are walking into when they respond to a 911 call. These heroes don’t know for sure how ill a person is or whether they might be exposed to the COVID-19 virus.

I’d like to acknowledge all the school leaders and day care center owners who have had to make difficult decisions on whether to stay open or close. I’m confident they did what they had to do to protect the children and their families. What a horrible situation to be in.

To all of the parents of school age kids. Hang in there. Reading books, coloring, making blanket forts, running around in the backyard, shooting baskets in the driveway, playing board games, completing textbook assignments from their teachers could be just what the doctor ordered.

To show how optimistic I am, I have not canceled my spring break plans yet.

 Sharon Stone is the editor of the Tri-County Times. To contact her, email her at sstone@tctimes.com or call her at (810) 433-6786.

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