Happy Weekend, all.
With the current weather predictions showing highs in the 50s and 60s next week, I already feel a sense relief that better days are ahead (and certainly warmer ones).
While I am feeling slight relief, I’m not sure if it’s due to spring’s impending arrival, the conclusion of my spring semester of graduate school arriving or some optimism about this March being better than the last.
Last March, on the 9th to be exact, I traveled from my Lebanon County home to a meeting at Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center where U.S. Rep. Scott Perry, R-10th District hosted a meeting about the yet-to-be-understood coronavirus and school and community administrators.
The pre-mask mandate meeting was intended to brief county officials in central Pennsylvania on the virus, with many of the school administrators in attendance asking for clearer guidance on next steps to mitigate the spread of the virus.
At the time, schools were still open and sporting events were still happening.
Dr. Catherine Paules, an expert in influenza with Penn State Hershey’s Division of Infectious Diseases said then, “This is no trivial virus.”
Little did we know then how right Paules’ words would be.
After the meeting, I returned home to write the story (linked above) since my house was closer than returning to our Harrisburg office.
I didn’t know then, but I wouldn’t be returning to our office for some time, as later that week Gov. Tom Wolf issued orders to close schools and businesses and cancel local events as the virus continued to spread.
It’s been a strange and trying year since then.
Last May, I lost my great grandmother to COVID-19, and by August l was watching as my sister battled stage 3 Ovarian Cancer during a pandemic. I’m certain I am not the only one with experiences such as these.
Despite the challenges, I remain optimistic that this year will be better.
In fact, earlier this week, my sister received a clean bill of health after numerous intense rounds of chemotherapy.
Here’s to a better March,
Cassie Miller, Associate Editor