Updates from Sierra Nevada Memorial Hospital and Hospital Foundation
Happy Thanksgiving! For many, today is a favorite holiday focused on spending time with family, eating an abundance of food, watching parades, and celebrating traditions. This year will be difficult for people. Thanksgiving in the time of COVID-19 has meant making hard choices and giving up precious moments. A simple get together, even with people you believe to be safe, may have consequences. Many public health directors believe small household gatherings are a primary cause for the rise in cases.
Thanksgiving dates back to 1621 when people settled in Plymouth, Massachusetts. It was a celebration with indigenous people and a sharing of the harvest. That year 45 of the 102 colonists died from an epidemic that swept the region. History has a way of reminding us that there are things that can change the course of lives for which we have little control.
The recommendation is to keep festivities to people in your household. This is disappointing, but it also offers an opportunity to think outside the box and try something different.
One idea is we all have a family member that makes a recipe we love. As much as you’ve tried, you haven’t been able to get the secret ingredient that makes it exceptional. This year, encourage family members to share their recipe and get on Zoom to have all households prepare it at the same time.
Many will get on virtually with family members. Depending on the size of the group, ask each family member to pick two to three photos that are special to them. Have each person show the photo and tell the story behind it.
Another idea is to play a game of virtual family trivia. Ask each family member to come up with two to three question about the family. Be creative when writing questions and don’t forget those that married into the family. Ideas include, “Where did you first meet your in-laws,” “Who was the first person in the family to come to this country?” or even a simple question like, “What was your grandfather’s occupation?” You might be surprised what you learn from each other.
There are also things you can do closer to home. One thing about COVID-19 is your neighbors are likely at home too. If you have a friendly connection with your neighborhood, arrange a potluck where each of you deliver a dish to each other. Work out in advance who is preparing what so you have a complete meal. Then you can all go on Zoom and enjoy it together or if the weather is nice sit in your front yard and visit.
Consider a random act of kindness, especially if you know someone is by themselves. Make some calls to say hello and brighten a day for someone.
Despite the challenges today, we are reminded of the treasures in our lives. On behalf of everyone at Dignity Health Sierra Nevada Memorial Hospital, we wish you laughter, joy, and love this Thanksgiving holiday.
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