Wear Mask, Wash Hands, Social Distance…Is this the New Normal?

What can I say, these are uncertain times that all of us are learning to navigate one day at a time. It is sometimes surreal to think how much has changed and continues to change since the dawn of the new year.

We are back at school now, our health and safety demands that we wear masks all day, open all the windows and doors, remind students to wash their hands, sanitise desks, chairs and other things we touch in the classroom, as well as, social distance. It’s a lot and we are trying our best to have classes and educate our charges in the midst of all this.

I wonder how schools with classrooms at capacity will manage all of this when they reopen? It is hard to relax and have conversations with students and other members of staff like before. Social distancing is at the forefront of our minds. This is the new normal and it is exhausting to remember this day after day after day. It is quite easy to become paranoid at this time because it just feels like this invisible parasite is just lurking around at every turn.

We all know that the emphasis is on physical distancing but the term social distancing has taken root to describe this. It amazing how this term has become a part of the daily lingo and shows how a living language grows and stretches to accommodate words and expressions. We are reflecting on this in my classes and analysing how different posters are made using paralanguage and such. I like that we can discuss these kinds of things in my classes as we bring in current issues into our analysis of texts.

Wearing a mask in these hot humid climes is not fun at all. There is a lot of walking to be done to get from point A to B in this city. I often end up breathing hard through my mouth after a few minutes with beads of sweat bursting every which where. It is rough! I, however, try to pace myself literally and figuratively. I drink lots of water before leaving home each morning and throughout the day. It is important to replenish all the liquid that the mask helps me to sweat out. Phew!

Here we are almost halfway through 2020 and it seems like an unending rollercoaster. I am reminded daily to be thankful and treasure each moment of each day. There are many annoyances, tests and trials of course but there is much to be thankful for.

Each one of us need to think well about how to manage ourselves at this time and focus on this too. There are lots of heavy things happening. With this in mind, I carve out time on the weekend to stay in, relax, read a book and enjoy not having to wear a mask. This really helps me to go out and be my best on week days.

I pray we all keep well, in all aspects of our lives. Wear your mask, wash your hands well, social distance and feed your mind what keeps it healthy. For now, this is the new normal…

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