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Dear diary, let me update you on how the world has changed in the past few weeks

Dear diary, today is Saturday, April 18 and the only reason I know that is because I looked it up.

At this point, the days have run together from one day to the next, broken apart only by the delivery of lunches by heroes on a school bus, or the sight of front line medical workers stopping by for a crucial cup of coffee on their way to work, face mask and all. Sometimes I think someone should invent a face mask that would allow someone to drink coffee without ever having to remove the mask.

But, I digress.

I have come to the conclusion that no one really knows what to call this thing, this virus. For the longest time, I and others at the newspaper have written the virus’s name in all caps, like some subliminal way of yelling it out … COVID-19! Yet others go to the trouble of righting out “coronavirus,” but that is not actually correct, since the common cold is a type of coronavirus. Those trying to be really official and sound and read like they know what they are talking about write “novel coronavirus 2019.” And in an effort to settle it once and for all, I looked it up only to be told by trusted resources that COVID-19 is good, but if you’re feeling frisky, write “severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2” or “SARS-CoV-2.”

Again, down a wormhole there.

Diary, the children are doing well, their mother not so much. While I have the opportunity to race out the door each morning to chase down one story or another, taking all the necessary precautions, she has turned into even more of a superhero than before. She has now added teacher, principal and counselor to her list of job titles. There is the morning Bible study, followed by making sure the kiddos are doing their online work and it’s outside they go. I check in from time-to-time, making sure all are doing well and mom is sane — well, as close to sane as possible. She did admit yesterday that when the children do go back to school she will be a bit emotional. We will see.

All three children have received new bikes in this time away from school and have clocked enough miles to have had a respectable finish in the Tour de France. Both boys have moved from training wheels to now trying tricks and riding without hands. Let’s just say that didn’t end too well. Count that as a lesson learned.

They are enjoying the mid-day stop by the district’s school bus as they deliver lunch and breakfast. I am not sure who gets more joy from the daily visit, the kids or the bus driver and volunteers delivering the food. Let’s call it even.

Let me wrap this up.

Most of all diary, we are all healthy, our families are healthy and those we consider dear friends and neighbors are also healthy. We have somewhat adjusted to a “new normal” where face masks, hand sanitizer and social distancing are no longer oddities, but necessities. We have become far better planners on when we venture out to the grocery store and what we need when we go there. More orders have been placed online and we are truly thankful for the men and women who have continued to stock the shelves at the grocery stores and make deliveries. Calling them essential just doesn’t seem to do them justice.

We miss our church family, our Sunday School classmates and have come to realize that Zoom, while nice, just doesn’t allow for the comedic timing I have depended on to add a bit to the class.

The children have missed their teachers, their classmates and time at the ballpark, but we have told them all will come back in time.

Now, diary, it is the time to continue to follow the rules, make the adjustments to not only keep ourselves safe but those around us and those we hold so dear.

Diary, it is an interesting time in our lives but it is temporary, is important.

If I ever get the chance to look back and read this entry again, I hope and pray that this thing we have all dealt with, whatever you call it, will be a footnote in history and a time when we learned — or relearned — the value of family, the value of quality time and how those two things so desperately belong together more often.

 

Tim Reeves is editor of The Vicksburg Post. He can be reached at tim.reeves@vicksburgpost.com.

About Tim Reeves

Tim Reeves, and his wife Stephanie, are the parents of three children, Sarah Cameron, Clayton and Fin, who all attend school in the Vicksburg Warren School District. The family are members of First Baptist Church Vicksburg. Tim is involved in a number of civic and volunteer organizations including the United Way of West Central Mississippi and serves on the City of Vicksburg's Riverfront Redevelopment Committee.

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