"Caring more for others is my resolution this year" by: Jessica Shepard

   I know it’s a tradition to make a list of resolutions for each New Year, but I can’t recall being able to get past maybe four items and then forgetting about them by the second week in January. 
   Friends of mine have shared some of theirs on Facebook for the past week and they seem pretty easy this year. 
   No one is giving outrageous goals a try this year and I completely understand why. 
   After all, we had big dreams and plans for 2020 and the COVID-19 pandemic just ruined a lot of that. 
   This year, it seems more like people are turning to the little things like personal growth at a manageable level or working on things that are within reach. 
   The virus still holds so much sway over our lives that it should give most people pause to think critically and thoroughly before making life-altering commitments. 
   Plenty gave up their grand vacations or social gatherings and the trend is set to continue this year until we get a hold of this virus. 
   I have to say that I understand when others say they’re tired of it! 
   I wish I could just go out and do whatever I wanted without worries or fears that it might be my last restaurant-style meal or that I could lose a loved one in the process. 
   Sadly, even before COVID that was also a reality but it seemed less likely to happen. 
   With close friends having lost family members and hearing first-hand accounts of those who fought COVID and got out alive – I can’t fathom enduring such a thing, should it happen to me or my immediate family. 
   We’re coming up on a year with the pandemic in March and that’s only a handful of months away. 
   I thought that by now we’d be in a better place, but I suppose I was giving my fellow Americans too much credit. 
   Especially with the current COVID numbers in our county reaching over 380 cases in December alone. 
   It’s hard to hold onto hope when no one wears a face-covering correctly to cover their nose or at all and I see people still not washing their hands after using the bathroom or not covering their mouths when they cough. 
   I suppose that just makes it my goal to be more aggressively compliant and practicing better hygiene when I’m out and about. 
   I just wish that other folks cared enough to do the same. 
   I am always glad to see local businesses enforcing the face mask mandates and encouraging their customers to do better. 
   It’s just weird that those disbelievers and anti-maskers can’t find the drive within themselves to adhere to the rules. 
   Other countries across the globe can manage it and are doing better than we are with less active cases, deaths, and overall better general health of their people. 
   Perhaps that’s what everyone’s resolution should be this year: caring more for others, themselves, and all of our lives. 
   I’ve got no problem fully embracing this goal and will strive to stick to it as long as possible.   

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