Every August my brother-in-law hosts a family reunion. He has a lovely deck, with grill and pool and umbrellas and tables and lounge chairs, and it's a very nice gathering. I didn't go the first year after I quit because the temptation to smoke would have been too much. I did go last year and I had fun. It's wonderful to see the whole family together.
He made the decision to hold it again this year. In two weeks. I said no.
Even though in New York State the Covid-19 positive rate is less than 1%, that's not ZERO and there's no vaccine. And even though we'd be outside, we're family. We'd talk, and laugh, and drink, and eat, and hug and kiss, and be less than 6 feet away. Any good intention about masks will disappear in a flash.
It's particularly dangerous when faced with those we love. It's easy to stay away from strangers, or casual acquaintances.
I haven't seen my grandchildren or my daughter or son-in-law since March. Do you think I could see them right now without crushing hugs?? And if I can't go be with them, why would I attend a gathering of distant cousins and in-laws?
I may not be able to see them all for a really long time. It's a horrible sacrifice most of us are making to keep everyone safe, even though there are plenty of people not willing to sacrifice at all. It makes me sad and worried and deeply furious.
N.O.P.E. means Not One Puff Ever. I used that adage a lot my first quit year. I'm now using a similar idea regarding staying safe now so we can be together again some day. I hope you are, too.