Christmas was a bust in 2020. Although, with the vaccinations, this year’s Christmas (2021) was supposed to return to normal. MY sister in law always tells me, ” when we make plans, G-d laughs!” In July I started Christmas Shopping. I shopped for months to find the perfect gifts for everyone. I used to get a real tree. Since we were locked down last year, I bought a fake tree. Even though the fake tree is really pretty, with state of the art lights that go from pink, to blue to red – you get the message, it wasn’t the same. But, it was really expensive, and I thought I would get another “wear” out of it. Plus, it doesn’t make a mess! And then there was the wrapping. I stayed up all hours of the night for two weeks wrapping gifts. And, then my son came home from a business trip in Florida, with Covid. Even worse, my precious 2 year old granddaughter caught Covid. But, they were just given the o.k. with negative Covid tests! Christmas was on! Finally, I put the mounds of gifts under the tree. I went to Honey Baked Ham, stood in line for an hour, for a 14 pound ham. As I am walking to the car, with ham in tow, my phone rang. My daughter in law and 4 year old granddaughter tested positive for Covid. So, now it is official! Today, the day before Christmas Eve, we had to cancel Christmas. Again!
Covid, or should I say the surging COVID variants, are leaving us with this very difficult decision. Again! I am starting to feel like I’m in a time warp, once again reliving Christmas 2020. Basically, there was no Christmas 2020. What should we do with our family gatherings for this year’s holidays? Obviously, like Christmas 2020 last year, this year Christmas 2021, is now Cancelled.
I thought the following poem on “A Covid Christmas” by Tom McDonald would be more appropriate for Christmas Eve, than the original Night Before Christmas!
Twas the night before Christmas, but Covid was here,
So we all had to stay extra cautious this year.
Our masks were all hung by the chimney with care
In case Santa forgot his and needed a spare.
With Covid, we couldn’t leave cookies or cake
So we left Santa hand sanitizer to take.
The children were sleeping, the brave little tots
The ones over 5 had just had their first shots,
And mom in her kerchief and me in my cap
Had just settled in for a long winter’s nap.
But we tossed and we turned all night in our beds
As visions of variants danced in our heads.
Gamma and Delta and now Omicron
These Covid mutations that go on and on
I thought to myself, “If this doesn’t get better,
I’ll soon be familiar with every Greek letter”.
Then just as I started to drift off and doze
A clatter of noise from the front lawn arose.
I leapt from my bed and ran straight down the stair
I opened the door, and an old gent stood there.
His N 95 made him look pretty weird
But I knew who he was by his red suit and beard.
I kept six feet away but blurted out quick
“What are you doing here, jolly Saint Nick?”
Then I said, “Where’s your presents, your reindeer and sleigh?
Don’t you know that tomorrow will be Christmas Day? “.
And Santa stood there looking sad in the snow
As he started to tell me a long tale of woe.
He said he’d been stuck at the North Pole alone
All his white collar elves had been working from home,
And most of the others said “Santa, don’t hire us!
We can live off the CERB now, thanks to the virus”.
Those left in the toyshop had little to do.
With supply chain disruptions, they could make nothing new.
And as for the reindeer, they’d all gone away.
None of them left to pull on his sleigh.
He said Dasher and Dancer were in quarantine,
Prancer and Vixen refused the vaccine,
Comet and Cupid were in ICU,
So were Donner and Blitzen, they may not pull through.
And Rudolph’s career can’t be resurrected.
With his shiny red nose, they all think he’s infected.
Even with his old sleigh, Santa couldn’t go far.
Every border to cross needs a new PCR.
Santa sighed as he told me how nice it would be
If children could once again sit on his knee.
He couldn’t care less if they’re naughty or nice
But they’d have to show proof that they’d had their shot twice.
But then the old twinkle returned to his eyes.
And he said that he’d brought me a Christmas surprise.
When I unwrapped the box and opened it wide,
Starlight and rainbows streamed out from inside.
Some letters whirled round and flew up to the sky
And they spelled out a word that was 40 feet high.
There first was an H, then an O, then a P,
Then I saw it spelled HOPE when it added the E.
“Christmas magic” said Santa as he smiled through his beard.
Then suddenly all of the reindeer appeared.
He jumped into his sleigh and he waved me good-bye,
Then he soared o’er the rooftops and into the sky.
I heard him exclaim as he drove out of sight
“Get your vaccines my friends, Merry Christmas, good-night”.
Then I went back to bed and a sweet Christmas dream
Of a world when we’d finished with Covid 19.
COVID-19 raised its ugly head and started surging across the nation, causing huge increases in new cases. Even worse, the hospitals are filled with Covid patients. They are treating the most COVID patients since the Pandemic began, almost 2 years ago.
My husband and I didn’t like what was happening with the spread of the Delta variant and the new Omicron variant, We made the really tough decision to cancel our family Christmas. It was an extremely difficult decision and it makes me so sad, but once the decision was made, we told our family. In My heart, I know it was the right decision.
The health of our family is our top priority and, with so many people refusing to wear a mask, or socially distance themselves ,COVID is going to to get worse in our country before it gets better. Therefore we need to reduce our odds of getting it by practicing and implementing caution this holiday season and beyond.
Every family has to make its own decision about Christmas and holiday gatherings, but, with over 800,000 people not getting together for Christmas this year and last (because of dying from COVID) I don’t want our family gathering to damage the health, or take the life, of any family member (or myself). I want us to have future Christmas gatherings because we were careful this Christmas. I love my sons and their families very much and that’s why, with COVID cases rising, I don’t want to gather with them this Christmas season. It’s not that I don’t want to see them. It’s about protecting them from infection and worse.
Now, Covid has spoiled two Christmas holidays, creating isolation for and from family members — but there will be future, joyous holidays when the Pandemic danger is greatly reduced — or eliminated altogether.
MERRY CHRISTMAS TO ALL!