We are living in a much different world today than we were a year ago. As of this month, more than 40 percent of the U.S. is fully vaccinated. Businesses are opening back up. Some restaurants and public places no longer require masks. The President has declared the world safe for those who are fully vaccinated.
One of the most important implications of this new phase of the pandemic is that parents can now go back to work. If you’ve been working from home for the last 15 months or if you were laid off, chances are your employer is calling you back into the office, restaurant, or retail store to resume work.
I know for many parents this can bring both relief and anxiety. Relief that life is getting back to normal and anxiety over being back around people again, wondering if life as usual can truly resume. To assuage your fears, I have a few tips for those of you who are worried about going back to work and what that could mean for your family and their health.
It’s very possible that you’re not able to go back to work until you are vaccinated, according to many employers. But if getting vaccinated is an option for you and you want to go back to work, I highly recommend being fully vaccinated first. I am pro-vaccine. I was a physician when chickenpox, HIB and meningitis killed far more people than they do now. Vaccines make for a safer and healthier world and when it comes to being back in contact with people on a daily basis, the vaccine is what will prevent you from getting sick and bringing sickness back home to your kids.
Exercise precautions when you need to.
While being vaccinated greatly reduces your risk of being infected by Covid-19, I know many parents will still feel cautious around others, not wanting to get the rest of their family sick. Listen to your hesitations. If your coffee shop job no longer requires wearing a mask, but you feel nervous without one, wear it. If your boss no longer requires wearing a mask while meeting with clients, but you want to just to be safe, do it. There’s no need to create more anxiety for yourself because you’re worried about what people will think. During this grey time when the pandemic is easing but not yet over, many people will need to do what they need to do to feel safe in public again. Let’s have extra grace and understanding for each other.