The term “social distancing” has quickly become my most unliked phrase of 2020. I vote for retiring the phrase when the ball drops on New Year’s Eve at the end of this year. Quite honestly, it’s a misnomer from the start. Shouldn’t we be saying “physical distancing”? Humans are social creatures. If we must distance ourselves from socializing, what’s the point! But physical distancing, during a pandemic, I can get behind that.
The earliest record of physical distancing is recorded in the Bible; Leviticus 13:46 “And the leper in whom the plague is…he shall dwell alone; outside the came shall his habitation be.” I’m certainly not comparing the coronavirus to leprosy, but you get the gist.
This week, my wife called her grandma. Her grandma and grandpa are both still living and, most recently, have been confined/quarantined within the walls of a nursing home. Keri has kept up good contact with them through this, but no one has been able to enter or exit their room to visit. During the height of the pandemic, the pictures you saw on the news of families touching hands through the glass window barrier between the nursing home resident and the family member were very real to us. That’s how contact has been made between them and members of the family for over 2 months.
“When am I allowed to get out of here!” came the words from her grandma. “I don’t know, but things are looking better out here…hopefully soon” Keri replied. This seemed to give hope and purpose to her grandma as their conversation went well the rest of the call.
A true reminder that we are social beings. Human connection was never meant to be ‘distanced’. One can remain physically distanced and still maintain a social connection to a friend and loved one. With today’s technology, it’s never been easier to connect with each other, no matter where the quarantine may find us. Reach out to a loved one today. Zoom them, call them, go to their location and join hands if even through a glass window. Last I checked, the US Postal Service is still in operation as well…write a letter, send a card, insert a $5 gift card to their favorite coffee shop…they will be able to use it soon…I promise.
The economy is reopening. Be careful, stay safe, physically distance where appropriate. But never distance yourself socially…you were meant for connection.