March 4, 2021

Stevens County Times

Your spot for community news in Stevens County, Minnesota

We Face Tough Personal Decisions With Reopening


This is an important time of year. School is coming to an end, graduations are taking place and we are honoring our veterans on Memorial Day. People are trying to get out more after the Stay-at-Home order was allowed to expire and the Stay-Safe order has replaced it.

Each of these things can affect the others during this pandemic. Children will want to be out and about more, graduation party invites will be going out, and family picnics will probably be held over the weekend. It will be a difficult decision-making time for many people. Do you risk the virus and gather with others, or do you stay home, as we have been doing for weeks, and stay safe?

I have been trying to advocate for allowing people to make their own decisions when it comes to gathering with others. However, some things are very tempting and other things you just don’t want to miss. I think if I had a grandchild graduating, I would not miss the ceremony or the party. I would just hope that everyone attending would be smart about it. No hugs, no handshakes, and keep your distance.

I love that the retail stores are now open but I am being cautious about going shopping. I can’t wait for the bars and restaurants to open but I might go on nights when I don’t think there will be crowds. I will probably prefer to sit outside rather than inside. 

I know a lot of people my age also enjoy going to casinos or traveling. I recently told my husband that I am really missing not going to Bingo. These are popular pastimes for people who are most vulnerable and unfortunately will probably not be back in my plans for some time. Those are places where there will be crowds of people and more of a risk of catching something, even if it is just a cold. I know, I have returned from vacations several times, and promptly came down with a cold.

I guess we have to continue to be patient and ease back into things. Maybe take baby steps to leave the safety of our homes and do some of the things we really want to do. I know a lot of grandparents who are now happily able to see, and maybe even hug, their grandchildren. It would be wonderful if our churches could reopen, but once again we have to move slowly. 

We are getting by and nothing is being hurt by being careful. However, if we move too quickly, we could be hurt badly by throwing caution to the wind. I hope they don’t restart Bingo because I might just have to go to that, after all I could be a winner.

Katie Erdman