Letter to the editor: It’s okay to feel sad now and to say so

Rich Nichols is the director of technology in the Perry Community School District.

To the editor:

The Perry Community School District and Perry Community have gone through a rough patch over the last week.

Like the rest of the country, we have felt the anxiety and a sense of unease over the restrictions COVID-19 has put on our lives. Last week, we also experienced the tragedy of a car accident that took the lives of two of our elementary students and severely injured students in the elementary, middle school and high school.

This week we lost a wonderful teacher to cancer. He was not just a teacher. He was a friend, a role model, a father, a husband and a dedicated educator. Dedicated in ways most people will never know.

Now we have experienced a huge outbreak of COVID-19 in our meat packing plant. This is another tragic situation that impacts the families, friends and relatives of our community.

I also feel sad about the way we treat each other these days. The “them-versus-us” mentality. The sense that we have lost our compassion and our humanity. The emotionless manner the increasing number of deaths are announced and the lack of unity we, or at least I always felt, have had in this country.

When I got home from work last night. I was sad. I kept telling myself to stay positive and keep focused on the job at hand.

Eventually, I came to the conclusion that it is okay to be sad. It is okay to recognize the difficult times we are in. It is okay to feel the sorrow of loss and the emotional toll of what we are facing as a community.

I have always tried to keep an optimistic and positive view of thing regardless of what I am going through. I try to keep pushing through the emotions and focus on the things I can control.

Today, I decided it is okay to be sad for a while.

Rich Nichols


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