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Staying Connected While Practicing Social Distance

Social distancing is hard, but even when kept apart, we are in this together!

Thanks to this Coronavirus, Covid-19, we are all encouraged to keep our distance from one another, to prevent spreading it. I understand why that is so important, however it is hard to do. We miss our members, visiting us in the lobby. Our shared branching members too. We think of many of you as family and friends. Sharing a quick visit, and a laugh or two, with you is often the highlight of our workday.

Thank heavens we have two drive-up lanes and get to see many of you coming by that way. We know sometimes the lines are long and have great appreciation for those who are still smiling when they reach the tubes.

Some of our staff is working from home, while others are in the Credit Union. Our closely knit team is still together in spirit, but we are all keeping a safe distance from one another. No more goofy group photos for the foreseeable future.

Outside of work, many of us are keeping away from friends and family. Calling our elderly parents, or grandparents, rather than visiting. We do this to protect them, just in case we’ve been exposed and could in turn expose them. Celebrations and social activities canceled. It can all feel very isolating. But here’s the thing. Even if we feel alone, we are all in this together.

There are ways to stay connected. Obviously if you have social media or are comfortable video-chatting, it is easier for you than for those who are not tech savvy. Our family, spread between three states, is getting together via video chat on Saturday night. We’d like to all catch up, lay our eyes on one another and even play a game. I can’t wait to see them all.

But here is an idea for those not comfortable with computers. Make a lunch date with a friend. You may not be able to sit together in one of your homes, or in a restaurant, but consider this. Support a struggling local diner or restaurant that now offers only take-out or curbside pickup. You can both call your orders in, pick them up and park your cars near one another and speak through your open windows, while you both enjoy a leisurely lunch. It works. I know because I tried it. This is challenging if one of you is hearing impaired, but otherwise it works just fine. The weather is getting better, so you may even consider parking along the waterfront and brown bagging it. Just keep a safe distance and you can still enjoy a lunch date with a friend.

If you are truly feeling isolated, need advice or counseling, or are looking for information or resources, please call 211. This is a free service to all people in Maine. They can direct you to counseling, financial aid and more. We’d like everyone to get through this together, even if only in spirit. We love our members.

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