This post is ironic. When my family went to Disney in July, I wouldn’t let anyone post anything on social media because I was afraid of being judged or shamed for our decisions. When we decided to take a quick trip in October, the same rules applied. Consequently, it’s kind of weird that I am not only posting a picture but telling the world about it in a blog post, huh?
Before you read any further, you need to know just a bit about me. I’m a square peg in a round hole as a liberal who is worried about COVID-19, almost never leaves the house, makes my own face masks for my family, and carries hand sanitizer in her pockets. At the same time, I believe in trying to open businesses safely, I sent sent one daughter off to college in August, and I am letting another one attend public high school, including show choir. So I guess I am all over the place.
I planned like crazy for our Disney trips. I read blog and forum posts each day. I watched vlogs to look for social distancing. I researched ideal crowd capacity times. I made Disney-patterned masks for every day of the trip, including pockets for a third layer of filter. I warned my family repeatedly about all of the rules we would be following.
But at the same time, I was watching other people on social media and judging them for their choices. I don’t even mean silently judging them. I actually told a friend that I thought someone deserved to get COVID-19 with the way they were behaving. That’s harsh and (probably) wrong. I supported the people who chose to stay home but I critiqued everyone who left their house. Post a maskless selfie with a friend? Irresponsible. Eat at a table with others in a restaurant? You’re asking for trouble.
In the end, I assumed everyone would judge me for my Disney trip the way I was judging others for their choices, and I didn’t want to deal with that. As word started getting around about our trip, I finally decided there was no use hiding it anymore.
What’s the moral of all of this? I guess in part that we are all making choices right now for ourselves and our families– HARD choices. Some things are definitely selfish in my opinion, but I know my opinion is different than yours. You may think my trip was selfish. Maybe it was. But it wasn’t done without regard for others’ safety. Educating people can be done nicely. Shaming them is something different.
We are at a point in our country where EVERYTHING is divisive and everyone is on edge. Polite discourse has gone out the window and public attacks are the norm. We see pictures online and we don’t know the full story behind them so we jump to conclusions. Maybe we all need to give each other just a little more grace?
Things are going to get worse before they get better in the next couple of months (in MULTIPLE ways). Keep your family safe and sane by following the science and go find some cute Disney face masks somewhere!