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We know. COVID fatigue is real. Pandemic PTSD is a thing. And we’re all tired of living it, mourning it, fearing it, seeing it, hearing about it—much less reading about it.
The last year no doubt created its own special brand of hell. But with it came a level of community (and solitude), reflection, innovation and growth like none of us have seen or experienced in our lifetimes.
And at the one-year anniversary, with more sleeves being rolled up each day and numbers finally dropping, we can actually see the light at the end of the tunnel. Social distancing will come to an end. We will sit on bar stools again and dine indoors without inhibition. We will sway to live music. We will complain about all the people at fests and the NC State Fair. We will tailgate (pack those coolers!). We will fill the stands at Carter Finley and PNC. And we will hug and high-five again. (Is anyone else in their feels?)
And, as you have told us, most importantly, we will live with a level of gratitude and abandon we could have never discovered if not for this pandemic. So, at this one-year anniversary (which somehow seems momentary and lifelong at once), we asked people from all walks of life—of all ages, stations and from all over the city—to tell us their biggest life changes, saddest moments, what they learned, how their life view changed—and what they are most looking forward to.
So, grab the tissues and dive in—and feel solidarity and hope. We thank you; we see you; we feel you—and we cannot wait to hang out with you again.
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