How can we express our joy and sorrow for others? Is a masked hug a dangerous exchange? Can we shake hands wishing congratulations?

We are cloistered in our homes – looking forward to the new year – when vaccines may improve our options – reducing the COVID virus effects – with safety our primary concern.

As we find our way through the pandemic – adapting to changes in our relationships – we are missing physical contact with others. Social existence requires multiple parameters – to reduce the COVID virus effects: keeping 6 feet away from others – wearing a mask for protection – visiting outside at a distance – bumping elbows a tolerated greeting.

Loneliness is becoming our daily norm – with Zoom visits unable to restore – goodbye hugs at the outside door.

Barbara Dowell


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