This is the time of year when I generally step back from being the physician you read every Tuesday on these pages and just have a conversation.  Does anyone think that this is a normal holiday season?  Most of us look forward to this time of year whether we are celebrating Christmas, Hanukkah, or any other religious festival timed to occur in mid to late December.  Are we really able to do that this year? For many of us, this holiday season will be forever remembered not for the happiness and joy it should bring, but the sadness associated with the loss of a loved one to a global pandemic.  How do we rationalize the fact that some of the choices made by our fellow Americans made some sense to them but resulted in calamity to others?

At the time of this writing, the pandemic is uncontrolled but so, it seems, are our actions.  Travel and social gatherings with friends and family are all part of the season, but not this season.  I am tired of hearing the nightly statistics about how many more COVID cases have occurred, how many people are in the hospital, or how many deaths are occurring.  Don’t tell me these things, until you can tell me what we are really doing about it.  Are we, as a people, really doing the things that can help keep our family and friends safe?  Don’t wait for others to help you – help yourselves.  Merry Christmas!