Do You Remember?

March 13, 2024

For those of us old enough to have been around, we know where we were shortly after noon on 22 November, 1963.   President John F Kennedy had been shot and killed in Dallas – and the world changed.

Most all of us remember where we were at 8:46am and in the succeeding hours on 11 September, 2001.   It is so familiar there is a nickname – 9/11.   But now there is another . . . 

Do you remember where you were on the afternoon of 13 March, 2020?  Governor Northam closed K-12 schools for two weeks and that was just the beginning!  The pandemic was here and we did not know the rules or how we were supposed to care for the individuals we support, and protect the staff, and navigate through a landscape that was changing if not by the hour at least by the day.    

One of my most vivid memories was a Saturday afternoon when I thought it might be safe to take a quick walk around the block – I got a call from a provider who described a deteriorating situation in a group home where some staff and all of the residents were sick; PPE was tough to find, residents who did not feel too bad did not want to isolate, staff who were not sick were afraid to come to work, etc.   He was trying to do it right, play by that day’s set of rules and he called the local Health Department . . . they told him that he needed to send all staff home!   “I didn’t do that,” he said; “Do you think I’ll get in trouble?”

We lost individuals we supported, we lost staff and some also lost family, but we and the service system survived.   You should all be very, very proud that four years out from the day that suddenly the world became very scary you are still doing the work you were meant to do!