Thinking outside the box is becoming the new normal

Published 12:38 am Wednesday, April 22, 2020

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Dawn Burleigh, General Manager/Editor

Governor Greg Abbott may have lessened the restrictions of businesses so they can stay operating again, but it is not business as usual just yet.

Face masks, gloves and sanitizers may continue being the norm throughout the summer.

Personally, I am wondering if the fish and crabs will care if I have a face mask on when I catch them. But not all summer activities are as forgiving.

Tan lines will have a new direction this year with face masks covering faces.

All joking aside, the seriousness of the pandemic is not over. If we do not continue to follow social distancing, washing our hands and sanitizing, we will have to return to ‘the quarantine’.

There may be such a thing as too much togetherness when every one is stressed over what is coming next.

Not knowing what would be closed next, or if the company you work for will be forced to close the doors forever during the pandemic did not help matters.

Then there were families who lost loved ones, not COVID-19 related. These families discovered the definition of ‘immediate family only’. For so many of us, immediate family includes cousins, their spouses and children, parents, grandparents, siblings, and friends considered family. But in times like these, immediate family is those who lived in the house with the person.

The regulations of no gatherings of 10 or more included those funerals, leaving people to think outside the box on how to include others for the grieving process. I know of one woman who attended her brother’s funereal via a ZOOM meeting.

There are several families which will have to consider who to leave home so the rest can go to a state park since gatherings there are limited to groups of five or less. The families with six or more have to select who loses the round to spend some time outdoors somewhere besides their own backyard.

Government entities are meeting via phone conferences and ZOOM meetings to ensure safe distancing.

But some entities are still meeting in person while maintaining six feet distance. For some this is do-able but for others, it does not leave much space for reporters or citizens to safely attend.

Thinking outside the box on how to meet and connect may be the normal for right now but it may also be the inspiration we need to create new traditions.

The LC-M Bear signs for 2020 LC-M graduates is thinking outside the box and maybe a new tradition for the school.

One mother of a graduating senior was actively involved in Project Graduation for the seniors. If there is a way to pull off a celebration for those seniors, I am sure she will figure it out. I, personally, am betting she is just waiting for word on how graduations will be conducted this year to make the LC-M Project Graduation announcement.

We are all in this together, and together we will get through this.

Dawn Burleigh is general manager and editor of The Orange Leader. She can be reached at