Bright Spots

By Chloe Learey, Executive Director

The term “languishing” has cropped up to describe how some of us may be feeling the affects of the pandemic that seems to have no end. Languishing includes feeling a lack of motivation, stuck, emptiness, lack of focus, blah – an overall absence of feeling good. We thought we would be beyond the pandemic by now, maybe not back to the old normal, but certainly in a more “open” new normal. Instead, we continue to wear masks and worry about getting sick, even if we have been vaccinated.

Small bright spots can bring some light into the languishing, even if only for a brief respite. Some of these highlights from the past month include: Everyone Eats!; surveillance testing on site; and vaccinations getting approved for younger children.

Everyone Eats! has been an amazing example of what happens when a few people get together with an idea, believe in it, and help it grow. Throughout much of the pandemic our community has had access to locally meals that have nourished people and businesses in a win-win for all. Being able to partner with EE! and get meals delivered to campus one day a week is a joy. It gives families a chance to grab dinner and not worry about cooking, leaving more time to connect at the end of the day. It also supports restaurants to stay in business during a time of continued uncertainty. And having the opportunity to try foods you might not have otherwise tasted is an extra bonus!

Being able to start surveillance testing for COVID is perhaps not as fun as food, but it has been fun to develop a new project and be able to do something concrete to help keep children, families and staff safe. We are opening this testing to the whole Prouty community, including family members. We encourage everyone to sign up even if you don’t anticipate using it a lot. It is easy to enroll and free, and we plan to do it on a drop in basis on Mondays and Thursdays. So if you travel or if you think you might have been exposed, drop by and get tested! Sign up here. We are proud of our OHRT (Organizational Health Response Team) for staying on top of the possibilities and taking the initiative to make this happen.

One final bright spot: COVID vaccinations are approved for 5 to 11 year olds. This is another big step to containing the virus and minimizing its impact, hopefully moving us towards a more open time for connecting and exploring the world on the other side. If you would like more information about children and vaccinations the Vermont chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics is hosting Zoom meetings, and you can find information here to join: Dr. Richards from Brattleboro Primary Care is hosting the November 10th conversation if you want to hear it from someone you know.

Sometimes all we can do is just keep putting one foot in front of the other, accept that we are doing the best we can even if we don’t feel like we are flourishing, and look for bright spots to inspire us to keep going. As Dory the fish says. “Just keep swimming.” And take good care.