We are six months into the COVID-19 pandemic, and we are getting tired.
We are tired of wearing face coverings. Tired of physically distancing. Tired of not being in school. Tired of constantly refreshing a county map every Saturday to see if school is in person, online or if students can participate in sports.
We are tired of hearing about the Coronavirus.
We are becoming accustomed to the rising number of cases in our young people. Many are numb to the fact that more than 205,000 people in our country, and one million around the world, have died.
We are tired of worrying about catching COVID-19. We are tired of being hesitant to visit older loved ones. We are tired of restricted visiting policies.
We are tired of the constant change and disorder that this pandemic has introduced into our lives.
Citizens feel restricted from their most precious freedoms.
Elected leaders feel caught between the reopening of schools, businesses and amenities and the health impact COVID-19 has taken on the health of their citizens.
Public health experts have become the enemy to some - seen as obstacles to desired freedoms.
The frustrations, concerns and issues we experience are reasonable. But they do not excuse us from responding to this generational moment of need.
We must stay together, protecting ourselves and each other. Finding the beauty in each of us that loves one another.
There is no playbook to this pandemic. There are few answers from the past to help solve this problem.
Just you. Just me. Just us.
We must practice the golden rule and treat ourselves and each other as we would want someone we love to be treated. We must commit to the safety and wellbeing of each other.
Nothing about this is an ordinary experience. This is an evolving situation, unfolding in real time. We have not previously seen the challenges this pandemic has brought to our lives.
But if we stay together, love and protect each other, we will emerge from this better than before. We will be bound to each other and bound to the principle of health and wellbeing. But getting there will challenge us all.
West Virginia, stay healthy. Stay strong. We are always better together.