For the first time in my 30 years of life, I will not be at my grandparents’ table on Thanksgiving. Neither will my wife or our 2-month-old son, whom they’ve yet to meet.

We’d all been hoping it would be safe enough for us to visit if we were vigilant, wore masks and kept our distance. But with COVID cases, hospitalizations and deaths rising across Maine, we simply couldn’t risk their health or ours. It was as painful a decision we’ve had to make as a family in a long, long time.

My grandmother is 82 years old. My grandfather is 88. I miss them very much, and desperately want them to meet their great-grandson. They will meet him someday, but it will not be on Thanksgiving this year. Maybe it will be on Christmas, or perhaps not until there is a vaccine next year that gives us the peace of mind that eating at the same table won’t kill them.

If we make these painful sacrifices now, we can stop this pandemic. I know it’s not fair. None of this is fair. But to know that our collective circumstances are made worse every day because folks are unwilling to do what is necessary to defeat this virus is worse than “not fair” – it’s absolutely maddening.

So please, listen to our public health professionals and stay home on Thanksgiving. For you, for your loved ones and for all of us.

I just want to see my family again.

Chris Glynn
South Portland

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