Cherish memories of a COVID Christmas

Commentary by
Richard Froese

“It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas…!

Is it? Not really!

In 2020, it’s looking a lot like anything but Christmas.

People will still celebrate the real reason for the season as Alberta bans all major gatherings during the holiday to reduce the number of cases and the risk of spread.

Alberta Premier Jason Kenney announced Dec. 8 that all indoor and outdoor gatherings are banned for four weeks, except for getting together with those in your household.

Province-wide restrictions and mandatory masks were created to help reduce the spread and risk of COVID-19 as daily cases skyrocketed to 1,800 in the first week of December.

Have a masky Christmas. Follow all the health restrictions and you could have a special memorable Christmas.

It could be the best Christmas present you could give anyone, family and friends; to protect them from the risk of COVID-19.

December is usually the busiest month of the year for large gatherings to celebrate Christmas.

This year, the 2020 Christmas calendar is pretty empty.

No school concerts. No staff, group or community parties.

No major church celebrations. No Santa Claus. No driving to another community for Christmas dinner with family and/or friends.

No visitors from out of town coming over. No travelling to another province or country to celebrate.

Everyone has to realize the popular saying, “We’re all in this together.”

While many people have lost jobs or income during the pandemic, money is tight to buy Christmas gifts, even for the young children.

As each of us enjoys a quiet relaxing unhurried Christmas, think of all the millions of people around the world who don’t have the same wealth of memories with family, friends, food and fun.

The Christmas of 2020 will remind us how fortunate most of us are in northern Alberta, and Canada.

A COVID Christmas may also remind many seniors 80 and over of their childhood, when the special day and season were simple. Seniors often talk about fond memories at Christmas with their immediate family and maybe a few relatives who live a few miles away. Handmade gifts, homemade cooking and baking, and fun with the family are among the greatest Christmas memories for many seniors.

“I’ll be home for Christmas” is a line in a Christmas carol that could well be the theme for season in 2020.

May your presence with family in a COVID Christmas be your gift and create special memories that last a lifetime.

The world offers many ways to stay connected with your family when you can’t be physically with them.

Remember, we’re all in this together.

As people everywhere follow restrictions to reduce the spread of COVID-19, we will be able to be together again in Christmas 2021.

Better yet, as the vaccine shots start in Alberta and other parts of Canada, we can start to see larger gatherings open up sooner as the risk is under control.

Have a Merry Christmas!

May it be just as memorable!

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