When we headed out for Denver at the beginning of Spring Break, we never dreamt that things would change so drastically in a week. It was a beautiful drive with a fun group of volleyball friends…and I was grateful for the one-on-one time with my daughter. Denver is always beautiful, and the Colorado Crossroads National Qualifier has always been one of my favorite tournaments. It was our first Qualifier of the season and our team was ready to do BIG things! As we competed that weekend, we began to hear rumblings about the Coronavirus…and we noticed that the convention center had set up lots of extra hand sanitizer stations. By the time Monday rolled around, everyone was talking about it – but we never expected that as we packed up our volleyball gear and headed back home, it would be for the last time this season. Or that our last dinner with friends in New Mexico would be the last time we ate at a restaurant for months.
Within two days of returning home to enjoy the rest of our Spring Break, everything began shutting down. We were in disbelief…but honestly never thought it would directly affect us here. Then the news came – an extra week of Spring Break. That was okay, we would enjoy another week at home with our kids. Then our oldest daughter called with the news…the University of Arkansas was moving to online classes for the rest of the semester and the dorms were closing. Well, we could handle that too – we missed her and looked forward to having her home early. But in the days and weeks that followed, as more and more things closed and cancelled, the somber reality began to set in. This wasn’t going to be over in a week or two…we were looking at months! Fear began to set in for our friends that own local businesses and restaurants…for those that began to lose their jobs due to the Stay at Home Orders…and for our children that were being asked to give up being with friends and extended family, as well as staying home from school and extracurricular activities. It was surreal.
We all adjusted…we had no choice. We set up our home offices, school desks for our kids and hunkered down. We only went out for groceries and to support our local restaurants a few times a week for curbside service – and fell in love with the loosening of the guidelines to allow for take-out margaritas, growlers of beer and mason jar drinks from The Gin! We followed the orders and we adapted for our clients…we did whatever we could to help our community and flatten the curve. We wanted this to end…we wanted people to be able to get back to work and for local businesses to open their doors again. We wanted our kids to get back to doing what kids do. We wanted to go out to dinner with our friends. We wanted our community back…and we wanted it stronger than ever!
Now that things are opening back up again, things are starting to feel more “normal”. Graduation ceremonies are being planned and the Class of 2020 can breathe a sigh of relief that all is not lost. If there is anything that we’ve learned over the last two months, it’s that kindness, grace and compassion mean EVERYTHING. Yes, it’s a scary time…yes, we’re all living differently…yes, we all have our own opinions about the virus and the orders. But witnessing our community coming together to help those in need proves just how STRONG we are. We are honored to represent our community each and every day and pray that everyone stays safe and healthy. Reach out to us and let us know how you’re doing…let us know what we can do to help. We are here for you and WE ARE CELINA!!
With Bobcat Heart,
Jason & Heather Reynolds, Publishers of Celina Life & Luxury Magazine