Many of us in our regional district are staying at home as much as we can to help limit the transmission of COVID-19 and “flatten the curve” of this pandemic.
We are taking the orders of the Provincial Health Officer to heart and practising our very best physical distancing. We are living in isolation.
For some, this was perhaps a welcome relief at the start, a time to slow down and catch up on a few things on the ‘to do’ list. But as time goes on, the novelty of being isolated perhaps becomes stressful and isolation turns into loneliness.
We are fortunate to have a few tools at our disposal that can be used to relieve the stress and to blunt those feelings of loneliness. We have the telephone and the internet and these give us access to apps such as Skype, FaceTime, WhatsApp, Zoom and others.
I am sure that many people are using these, especially if you have young people around to lead the way. I know that it is a joy for my wife and I to be able to connect with our family close by in Squamish and with our family in the UK. It is comforting to be able to know on a daily basis that everyone is safe and healthy.
As I consider our good fortune, I think of the people in our communities who do not have family they can connect with, who are isolated from neighbours, who are beginning to feel cut off and alone.
I would like to encourage everyone to think about this and to look through your contact list, your address book, your Christmas Card list and critically think of everyone listed: who might need a call? Who might need some help to connect with a “modern” app? It could be a person living miles away in a sparsely populated area or it could be a person in the house next door.
Why not reach out to someone you have not spoken with in some time? We are likely to be in this state of isolation for a few weeks yet so now is a good time to do this. Of course, it has a benefit for you, too, as it gives you another contact, another conversation and I doubt that any of us would complain about receiving another call, even if we do need to pause Netflix for a few minutes.
SLRD Board Chair