By Zachary Baker–

With classes ending and finals being the main focus of every student before completely shutting down for the winter break, we have to reflect on how much we have overcome this year. We’ve overcome the pandemic suddenly changing our spring semester, the lockdowns over the summer and a tumultuous virtual semester. 

Many of us are looking forward to forgetting about academia for the next couple of weeks and to spending time with family and friends. However, despite our desires for a relaxing winter break, we must remember to stay safe and be smart.

For many students the Thanksgiving break was likely a little rough. Many of us still have work to get done, others are out of a job due to the new mandates by Governor Beshear, and likely all of us long for some time with those closest to us. 

But the reality is, COVID-19 still separates us. Despite our yearlong stress and our desire to finally take a break from it all, we have to make sure that we respect our distance around family. 

To do this, stick to small gatherings, make sure to avoid family if you are sick and go remote if you can. 

We have to remember that the holiday season is about joy, appreciation of loved ones and the celebration of each other. None of us want to lose loved ones to COVID-19. Many Americans have already lost someone that they had at the beginning of the year. COVID-19 is preventable.

Spending one Christmas limiting gatherings or going online will not kill the holiday season, but it will prevent COVID-19 from killing someone you love. 

During this tough time, we have to remember to love each other and protect those we care about without endangering them. 

With Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s all within weeks of each other, this will be a deciding time for the start of the 2021 new year. We all really want the next year to be better than this one was. 

Stay safe, healthy and enjoy yourselves for the winter season.

File Graphic // The Louisville Cardinal