Remember when we were kids and couldn’t wait to grow up and be adults because it was going to be so amazing? Then we became adults, and we were like, wait, this is what I was waiting for? Kids don’t know how good they got it. No bills. Parents to feed them and do their laundry. Plus, many of them can get away with saying inappropriate things because people are like “oh, they just don’t know any better”. If I have a meltdown and go on a three-day bender, suddenly I need rehab. Kids just need a nap.

It’s kind of the same with the pandemic. We were locked up for over a year, had to wear masks and do everything remotely. Now life is getting back to normal and I’m like, “can we just go back to lock down”? It’s all happening a little too fast for me. Did we need to go from zero to 60 in three days? It feels like the government dragged their feet to take the first step over several months, then took the next 15 in under two weeks.

A lot of the guidance offers a choose-your-own-adventure path for people to follow. If you are vaccinated, you should do one thing. However, if you are anti-vax you should do something else. But we are using the honor system here folks – and I honestly don’t trust 85% of the world. I’m vaccinated, so I should really not be too worried about COVID. Yet, the possibility of a breakthrough infection is there. It’s small, but you best believe that I am concerned about it.

It’s that concern that leads me to be weary about jumping in headfirst to the world. Let’s slow our roll and make sure that the delta variant isn’t going to come through and just kill us all. I know that I have seen one too many post-apocalyptic movies. My therapist laughs at me, which really you know you’re being ridiculous when the paid professional who’s supposed to tell you that you aren’t crazy is laughing at your craziness, because it’s basically my superpower to find the worst possible outcome for everything and spiral uncontrollably.

As close as we might be, we aren’t out of the woods yet. When will we be out of the woods though? That’s the question we have to ask ourselves. It’s not like one day the news is just going to announce that COVID is gone. In the last year, Swine Flu and Ebola both came back. So, we aren’t just going to eradicate COVID magically one day (despite what certain former Presidents might have said). That question is going to be different for everyone. Everyone is going to feel that they are out of the woods at different times, based on their own circumstances.

Let’s all calm down and maybe go about this intelligently. After being locked up for the last year, it also seems like people have forgotten how to act. People have lost their damn minds, going crazy like every night is spring break at the MTV beach house (did I just date myself with that?). Even if I trust them about their health, I don’t trust them to not be acting a fool. In Philadelphia, our homicide and gun violence rate is skyrocketing. Frankly, I have enough trouble trying to dress myself. I don’t want to have to try to accessorize around a gun shot wound.

In the meantime, I’m going to be at home with my Red Bull fort, waiting for more time to pass and everyone to regain their common sense.

Padraic Maroney hails from upstate New York, suffering from middle child syndrome.  His writing career began after moving to the Philadelphia suburbs while in high school. He wrote for The Bucks County Courier Times’ Reality section, written by local teenagers, and has the distinction of writing a weekly gossip column for a college newspaper at a school he didn’t even attend! His love of pop culture led him to intern at Teen People, where he met Janis Gaudelli, and realized he could turn being a millennial into a career. Since then he’s alternated between writing and marketing, but always focused on Millennials and everything they bring to the table. Padraic is a lover of shenanigans, 80s music, and the movie “Scream.”

You can follow his additional adventures on Instagram: @padraicjacob

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