From the Desk of CEO Judy Halper: March 2021

From the Desk of CEO Judy Halper

Other than people who suffer from claustrophobia, who else could imagine that getting into an elevator could strike fear into you? That was my experience the other day. For the first time in a year, I got into an elevator, and I was followed by two other people. I was extremely uncomfortable despite the fact that all three of us were wearing masks and physically distanced, and in typical Minnesota etiquette, did not exchange eye contact or speak to one another. Still, I noticed my level of discomfort, and relayed the story several times to various people as a means of settling myself and readjusting.

Each of us will have stories like that one. I am referring to this phenomenon as “Post-Pandemic Stress Disorder.” As we re-enter life as we knew it, we will be confronted by many different versions of what we remember as “normal,” but we will feel differently, and some of it will be difficult. More than ever, I see the usefulness and essentialness of Jewish Family and Children’s Service of Minneapolis. We strive to be the place people turn to for help, support, assistance, and comfort. Our programs and services are designed to meet the needs of every age and stage of life, and now we will also add that we are Here For All. Always….in a post-pandemic world.

We are approaching Passover, and the festival of freedom, celebrating the ancient Hebrew slaves’ Exodus from Egypt. The parallel to our modern day is there if you look for it. We are in our own exodus from a different enslavement—a pandemic that has chained us to our homes, and prevented us from doing what humans must do—be in touch with other humans. Of course, the pandemic has done so much more to upend our lives, including the loss of loved ones, loss of employment and livelihood, and myriad of cancelled events.

As we become more free of the pandemic and resume our “normal” lives, there will be many challenges. Some will be as “simple” as getting into an elevator, and others will be much greater – such as properly experiencing the many losses we’ve amassed. Big or small, JFCS can be a resource to help in your adjustment to our post-pandemic world. As our message states, “Just Call JFCS…”—we’re here to help.

Best wishes for a sweet Passover.