Provincial health officials have asked British Columbians not to gather with anyone outside their household or look for loopholes in health orders. (Stock photo)

Provincial health officials have asked British Columbians not to gather with anyone outside their household or look for loopholes in health orders. (Stock photo)

Editorial: Respect the rest of us, heed holiday restrictions

So many are sacrificing tradition for the greater good

If COVID-19 is the virus that stole Christmas, then it’s up to us to try to grow our hearts two sizes and think about the reason for the season.

The meaning of Christmas is something different for everyone. For many, it’s a religious holiday at its core. For a lot of kids, presents are the best part. For most of us, it’s probably the traditions and the togetherness that are most important.

The pandemic has turned tradition upside-down. Not only are extended family gatherings and travel plans cancelled, many of us can’t even celebrate with grandparents, parents, siblings, children and grandchildren.

We know how Christmas Eve, Christmas morning and Christmas dinner are supposed to look, taste, smell and feel, and there will be times, this weekend, when we might look around and sense what’s missing.

Traditions are important; family and connections are among what’s most important. To go without is to sacrifice greatly, so these next few days aren’t going to be just like any other days during a seemingly never-ending pandemic.

With that in mind, we sure hope that people heed the public health orders that are in place. So many of us are going to be putting the greater good before our own Christmas wishes that it would be a shame if a few families ignore the orders, spread the virus, and make everyone else’s efforts all for naught.

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry has asked British Columbians not to gather with anyone outside their household or look for loopholes in health orders. The province recommends virtual Christmas parties and religious services and Zoom gift openings.

Not as traditional, not as personal, not as appealing, perhaps, but something we can do.

There’s an irony that Christmas has never been more distanced, and yet we need to celebrate like this if we’re truly in this together.

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RELATED: 5 things we’ve learned about COVID-19 since the pandemic struck

RELATED: 380,000 British Columbians expected to be immunized for COVID-19 by March: Top doctor

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