UPDATE: As of Monday, April 13, 2020, there have been five COVID-19 deaths in Livingston County.
I am stuck at home — like pretty much all of you, I am sure — and I’ve been spending a lot of time perusing social media. I’ve been particularly struck by some who just today decided that they must remodel their kitchens or paint their bedrooms or re-do their landscaping, I am guessing in large part because they can’t over the next three weeks under Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s expanded Executive Order. These people are slinging hash at Whitmer and her expanded stay-home plan like they’re in the kitchen of a diner that’s jammed with hungry customers.
All this while a third Livingston County resident has died of COVID-19.
Except for those three people who died, residents of Livingston County have been pretty darn lucky. Our numbers are nowhere near as dramatic or tragic as in New York or Detroit.
But we can’t feel complacent, and this pushing back against the expanded “Stay Home, Stay Safe” order feels off-key because Livingston County’s numbers of COVID-19 cases are on the rise, nearly doubling since April 1.
And against this backdrop, we have a church in Brighton planning to hold in-person Easter services and an Easter egg hunt for kids.
There’s this new rush to push back against Whitmer’s Executive Order, to lift restrictions, to get everyone back to work and spending money, to get back to normal. But who among us can say what normal will be after this virus finishes ripping its way around the world?
Today’s normal is that there have been three COVID-19 deaths in Livingston County.
Is it difficult staying at home? Yes; yes, it is. But if Michiganders had to pick a community in which to shelter in place, I’m guessing that the bucolic Livingston — the state’s wealthiest county, certainly one of the safest, and, in my humble opinion, the absolute best — would be high on everyone’s list.
So, instead of feeling sorry for ourselves for having to stay home, let’s be forces for good.
It’s just three weeks. Maybe we should think of these three weeks as one each to honor the memory of those in our community who have died of COVID-19.
We can do this. And in those three weeks, let’s see how much flatter we can get the curve.
These are treacherous times, with a killer virus that feeds on human contact just waiting for us to let down our guard.
The choices we make every single time we leave our homes affects everyone else; our behavior determines the health and safety of others.
“Stay Home, Stay Safe” is flattening the curve.
Staying home works.