March 29, 2020

“Look for the Helpers”

“When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, “Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.” – Fred Rogers

I’ve been meaning to write down some thoughts through all of this, but couldn’t figure out where and then I decided that the blog would be a good place. A couple of weeks ago, we all started to realize the severity and realness of the COVID-19 pandemic. At first, there were just a few stories and people weren’t sure how or if we’d be affected. Now, we’re all well aware of the seriousness of it all. We’ve heard of friends of friends passing away, we’ve gone from being careful and washing our hands to complete isolation and doing our best to help “flatten the curve”. We’ve read countless articles, seen multiple charts, watched hours upon hours of news reports and we’ve comforted our children and tried our best to shield them from any fear or anxiety.

The fear and anxiety for us has come in waves. As small business owners, we’ve moved through bouts of frozen panic and the hope that if we stay still it will all go away to productivity and active preparation. We’re doing our best to comfort our brides and stay positive. Our hearts have gone out to those who’ve just started their businesses and can’t see the light at the end of the tunnel, to those who have been infected and are trying to recover alone, and to those who want to see and help their elderly parents or grandparents, but can’t for their safety.

The good news is, there will be an end to this. It may not be here yet, but it’s coming and we can’t wait for it! We will get through this together #ALONETOGETHER and we will come out better from it. We will have learned so many lessons, we will have a deeper appreciation for the many essential workers who don’t have the luxury of staying home to stay safe. We will come out of this with a new perspective on life, community, togetherness. We feel so incredibly lucky to be a part of such a wonderful community here on Nantucket. I’m going to share just a few of the beautiful things we’ve experienced over the past couple of weeks and I would LOVE to hear your stories!

Let’s start with the one that gives us what we need most – BELLY LAUGHS! My friend Hannah has been dressing up in a carrot suit and making one TIK-TOK video a day to make us laugh and it’s working. She has been the comic relief that we truly needed! Thank you Hannah! Maybe you can continue them long after all of this??? Please? Love you friend!

Next, there is our landlord and neighbor. She sanitized and dropped off a special board game for us to play with our four year old. We just happened to have the book that goes along with the game which motivated us to start reading it toghether. Such a kind gesture that made for a fun hour and memories we’ll cherish forever.

My sweet friend who had no idea how to use a sewing machine spent 6 hours learning on one that was lent to her and joined the incredible army of people making masks for our essential employees. She saw the need for masks not only for our hospital staff, but for UPS drivers, pharmacy staff, post office workers and every day people making trips to Stop and Shop. She also realized the standard mask size wasn’t fitting some of the men she was giving them to so she tweaked her design and made adjustable, larger masks to fit them better. She is a helper and we are so grateful for her. Thank you Otilia!

One of the most enjoyable parts of isolation has been the music from some of our favorite artists. This virus has affected ALL of us, with no exceptions and because of that we’ve been able to enjoy private (at least they feel private) concerts from Dave Matthews, Willie Nelson, Tallest Man on Earth, D-Nice, Questlove and so many more. We are forever grateful for these live shows coming straight from their living rooms. It’s made us feel together and included and it’s lifted our spirits. I don’t think I stopped smiling during Dave Matthews’ livestream.

Save with Stories, another saving grace for our little family. This instagram is “a spot to watch your favorite celebrities read your favorite children’s books”. The project supports a new fund between Save the Children and Share Our Strength’s No Kid Hungry. Willow absolutely LOVES watching Mom and Dad’s favorite actors reading her stories every day. Thank you for this wonderful distraction and important charity!

Bringing it back to our very own community, Laura, Chris and Lorna started an amazing fundraiser, The #CoronaSongChallenge raising awareness for COVID-19 on Nantucket. “We wanted to create a fun way to get our Nantucket Community to realize the seriousness of the COVID-19. What better way than through song?” They’ve encouraged others to re-write a song and post it on Facebook to remind people how they can help flatten the curve. It’s been a success and we are truly grateful for this sweet team who put it together. It’s been a blast watching what people have come up with! I believe they’ve raised over $5,000 at this point and it’s still going. Thank you Laura, Chris and Lorna! We applaud you!

Another friend who lives just down the street created an outdoor scavenger hunt resource and shared it with the community. She’s also designing and delivering gorgeous floral arrangements to add some light to your day. I ordered an arrangement for a friend and what she created was nothing short of magical! Thank you Hafsa!

Then there was the message we received from one of our favorite local restaurants. They told us that they wanted to show love with food and delivered us (with a mask and a sanitized bag) an amazing ready to cook meal. It was the most delicious part of our quarantined life so far and we are extremely grateful for them and their spirit that is helping hold together our community. Thank you LemonPress! We love you ladies and we’ll be putting in an order soon!

These are just SOME of the helpers and stories we’ve seen so far and we know that there will be so many more when this is all over. Like the owners of The Sandbar who have turned their service into a meals on wheels type service delivering food to our elderly community, and the many people who drove by a little boy’s house beeping their horns and waving to wish him a happy birthday, to Jason Bridges who is consistently getting online to answer questions from concerned citizens and offering advice and solutions. We salute all of you! We cheer for our Nurses, our Doctors, the restaurant owners like Gaven and Sabrina from Keepers who are keeping our island fed and those at the local paper who are keeping us updated and bringing us the latest news – the list is really endless. THANK YOU! THANK YOU! THANK YOU! Now, let’s hear your stories in the comments! Sending so much LOVE from our little island.

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