Thanksgiving Gratitude


Today, Dear Pandemic celebrates gratitude.

We are so grateful to each and every one of you, our readers, for coming along with us on this strange, surprising, and often difficult journey. We’ve grown so much this past year–as individuals and as a community. We are so grateful for our readers and especially all our volunteers. Dear Pandemic’s contributions wouldn’t exist without all of you.

Thank you to our readers for trusting us. You give us purpose every day. Thank you for leading with kindness and science. Thank you for your commitment to facts. Thank you for asking questions instead of making assumptions. Thanks for laughing at the absurdities of our situation along with us. And most of all, thank you for keeping the candle of hope burning for a brighter future.

Thank you to the public health professionals. We know you’ve been working hard to keep us all safe. Thank you to the nurses, doctors, therapists, and all the other clinical professionals who have been working hard to keep us whole and sane. Thank you to the cooks, custodians, delivery truck drivers, elevator repair people, mask manufacturing plant workers, sanitation workers, administrative staff, data analysts, programmers, lab technicians, and everyone else who is part of the great machine of health care delivery.

Thank you to the creative people who are using 3D printers to make face shields and the creative people who are keeping us laughing through the worst collective year any of us can remember.

Thank you to every person who wears a mask to protect other people. We see that act of selflessness. It gives us hope.

I also want to personally express my deep gratitude to the members of the Dear Pandemic team. Over these past 9 months, you have given thousands of hours of your valuable time to this project, simply because you care and you want to help. This work is a labor of love, but unlike many of our other unpaid (and paid) roles in life, at Dear Pandemic we don’t have the opportunity to know many of the people we are helping. It takes imagination, talent, commitment, and a certain flavor of public-spiritedness. Dear Pandemic is unlike any collaboration I have ever been a part of, and I’m so grateful to be here with you.

~ Malia Jones, PhD, MPH
Editor-in-chief & co-founder, Dear Pandemic

BONUS! I asked members of the team to tell us what they are thankful for today, and here’s what they told me!

I am grateful for what has been the most intense but at the same time most relaxed period of my life- rewarding work, lots of long walks and meals with family, no hectic travel, and deep (virtual) connections with friends and colleagues. ~ Dr. Jennifer Beam Dowd

I am thankful for this “squad”! Also for coffee, my health, my family, being able to go outside, yoga, cookies/the British baking show, kombucha, technology, reality TV (this is new to me, where have I been?), reconnecting with old friends, finding ways to laugh every day, and being able to have a job despite a global pandemic. Let me add waking up with purpose everyday (thank you in no small part to this group). ~ Dr. Aparna Kumar

I am grateful for the beauty of nature, my husband, and my two kitties, Callie and Fritz. They bring a calm and peace to my life that is much needed now. ~ Gretchen Peterson

I am grateful for family, friends, and the opportunity to lift up Nerdy Girls everywhere. Also: I’m incredibly grateful for my pair of heroes on the homefront — Brian and Ashley — whose help makes my Nerdy efforts possible. ~ Dr. Lindsey Leininger

I’m thankful for the journalists, authors, artists, performers, musicians, chefs, designers, comedians, and all the creative people who have continued to enrich our lives. We value you now more than ever. ~ Dr. Lauren Hale

I’m grateful for the state and local public health officials who have been battling the pandemic from Day 1 with grit, expertise, and compassion. They don’t get thanked very often, but they serve on “the other front line” and deserve our gratitude. ~ Dr. Alison Buttenheim

I am grateful for time in nature and the smiles of my children. ~ Dr. Ashley Ritter

I am grateful for unseasonably warm weather in WI thus far this fall for walking my pups. Thank you to our community of followers who partner with us in sharing science-based information related to the pandemic to their friends and family, keep us up-to-date on the latest burning questions related to COVID-19, and support each other in staying safe and sane! ~ Dr. Amanda Simanek

I am grateful for my family’s health and for my supportive network. ~ Dr. Michelle Kinder

I am grateful for my friends and family who lift each other up when we are feeling down. I am grateful for my husband and my cats, who bring laughter and joy to my life. I am grateful to all the healthcare workers out there putting it all on the line to help others. ~ Dr. Sarah Coles

I am grateful for health, family, friends. I’m grateful to learn daily. ~ Dr. Shoshi Aronowitz

I’m grateful to be alive, and for my family and friends, after over a year of health-related battles. I’m also thankful for the perspective I’ve gained, and for the ability to appreciate what’s most important in life: family, friends, and service to the community. Finally, I’m grateful for the heroic efforts of our healthcare personnel and essential workers who have put their lives on the line to keep our society functioning. ~ Dr. Sandra Albrecht

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