The most painful experience is being away from the people you love, however with covid 19 on the rise, the risk of infection is high. Especially with two of the largest holidays coming up. I tested negative all semester at Keene state college. However as soon as I came home I was unknowingly exposed by my family, who did not take the precautions necessary to keep themselves and others safe. Now I am in quarantine for two weeks, and have covid symptoms. My lungs are burning, and finals are just around the corner. I’m asking for people to please be safe this holiday season. Some of the ways you can be safe are: 

Masks, I understand that they can be uncomfortable, but some of them are really nice. I personally just ordered some christmas themed masks. You can even make sure they match your outfit, I have two flat black masks that always compliment my outfits no matter what I’m wearing. Masks keep you and the people around you safe from breathing in particles or spreading the virus. 

FaceSheilds, If wore correctly this could be a good defense from spreading covid. Unlike the masks, the face shields protect the whole face not just the mouth. However they do nothing to keep particles from being spread by you. Face shields are not the best alternative and have been proven to not be the best when it comes to preventing exposure. However it is better than nothing at all. 

Social distancing, I know it’s really hard to do during the holidays but social distancing is a smart way to keep yourself and others safe. Especially when you are at social gatherings. Please follow the CDC guidelines when it comes to social gatherings, or at least use honest judgment on how safe the environment is between high risk and low risk exposure. 

Wash your hands often or use hand sanitizer. As someone in quarantine I didn’t realize how much my germs spread. A simple dribble of drool could hold the virus. Sneezing could spread the particles really fast, and coughing is no ideal, make sure you cough into your elbow and if you blow your nose please wash your hands after. 

This is really important to keep your family safe this year. I couldnt spend Thanksgiving with my family. I couldn’t even facetime because they were all so busy. It breaks my heart that I have been home for almost five days, and I haven’t hugged my mom or dad. I can’t see my grandparents, or even check up on them. All because one person was neglectful and exposed not just me but my grandparents and sister. I have been sick and barely eating for days now. In between resting I’m just doing my best to finish out the semester. It is awful, and I just want to feel normal. Please keep in mind that even though you would be fine if you caught covid, there are some people who could not fight this off even if they tried, Covid 19 has already killed 264,000 people in the US. 

Please be safe and make good choices. Take precautions to keep others safe and make sure you are safe for the holidays.