Help and Inspiration - Written Submissions

Now, after 7 weeks (and counting) of isolation, I have been amazed by the initiatives of individuals, communities, and organizations across the world that have become heroes during this crisis. I am reminded of the beauty in humanity that has come from the ugliness of this pandemic. I look back on when my grandparents told me about their experience during World War II. Or when my parents explained their struggles through the 2008 Great Recession. One day, I will tell my children about my experience during the 2020 COVID-19 Pandemic, but more importantly, I will tell her about our healthcare workers, frontline workers, and the numerous people who have done their part in a variety of unique ways.   
Anonymous, Waterloo 

The reality is, each and every person is sacrificing something during this quarantine, be it a wedding, a prom, an education, mental health, finances, staying home with young children, the missed birth or death of a loved one, a lay-off, working on the front lines, sicknesses, and countless others. We need to mourn our collective sacrifices, but still embrace them with the appreciation that they are for the greater good.
Kristen Woodall, Kitchener 

I’ve kept in touch with friends by emails, texts, Facebook and phone calls. We’re all looking out for each other. I haven’t sensed any feelings from them that are different from my own. We’re worried but not terrified.
Lorna Weber, Elmira 

The 2 weeks that followed reminded me of everything that is good about being Canadian. Having traveled, we were required to isolate at home for 2 weeks in our tiny apartment. Stores were still figuring out how to manage home deliveries, so it meant relying on the kindness of others to look after food and supplies for ourselves and our cats. We never went without food. Different friends brought groceries from different stores, looking after not just our need to be fed but also to have some specialty ingredients to feel nourished and cared for. They tucked in a bouquet of flowers or a bottle of wine as a gift. And no one accepted payment for the groceries, wishing instead for our good health. 
Rachel Bolton, Kitchener

Our lives seem quieter but there’s more focused attention on the people and things that are truly important
Michelle Hrabi, Kitchener

The underpaid and undervalued professions that are now essential throughout this crisis, must be given more priority and attention in times to come. Perhaps people will start thinking more about what they eat, how much they travel, how much debt they want to carry.
Margaret Brubacher, Elmira

Each evening I will open my third floor apartment window which faces west and watch the sunset. Seeing that sunset reminds me that we made it another day. I survive and thrive one day at a time.
Joe Lethbridge, Cambridge

I received this email near the start of the social and structural impacts of COVID on my life (Uni classes being moved online, work being impacted/moved online, starting to distance from old friends and family because I was quarantining with four roommates). This email made me feel understood and like someone cared, and it made a huge difference to me. I want people to look back on this time and to remember the things we said to each other, and the ways we supported each other.
Kate Short, Kitchener

But breathe deep. Take time to do things that make you happy. Turn off your phone, Stop reading the news, Stream some ridiculous shows. Bake something. Stream some ridiculous shows of other people baking something. Play your favourite video games. Dance wildly to whatever kind of music makes you the most likely to break out the air guitar. FaceTime your friends and family to talk about something other than this illness and toilet paper. And have faith that there are whole teams of people working to keep things safe and stable for as many people – including you and your loved ones – as they possibly can.
Veronica Carter, Waterloo