July 1, 2021
BC entered phase three of its reopening plan. The hated masks are no longer mandatory in public places. It was a wonderful thing to see a strange face once more. Along with the masks we are allowed to gather again. Festivals and concerts are returning and live music is back.
Many people are rejoicing at the lifting of restrictions and infection counts of the dreaded covid are way down. In our beautiful province, they have told us that it is optional to wear a mask now. They still recommend masks for those that don’t have two doses of the vaccine. Still, most people have stopped wearing the loathed face coverings.
Some don’t feel comfortable yet and that is ok. I will get my second dose soon, but I will no longer wear the mask that has become part of my identity for the last eight months.
In the sweltering heat, I am very happy to allow my face to breathe freely.
July 1, 2021, was a day to celebrate the easing of restrictions and the hopeful end of the pandemic. It was also Canada Day. A day for rejoicing and sober reflection. We can’t cancel the birthday of Canada as some would have us do. Canada day is a day we can use to understand our past mistakes and try to right the wrongs committed by those that came before. To forego the celebration of all we have accomplished does nothing to erase the crimes committed in an other era.
In some ways removing our masks is an ironic parallel of the revealing of the atrocities that occurred at the residential schools across our nation. In the last few weeks, many bodies have been discovered in the schoolyards of the places that housed the indigenous youth of previous generations.
It is a horrific crime that needed to be unmasked. Canada day was a time to reflect on those wrongs. We can’t remove them any more than we can erase the creation of our country. We can face them and find a way to recover.
We are living in historic times. How we move forward will be the way we are judged by the future.
We enter a new phase in history. We are freer today. Our great country can celebrate its birth with somber reflection and rejoice in all the good that our country represents. The fact we can now walk freely without a mask is one step closer to living free.
Remember those lives that were lost. Mourn for those that never had a chance. Take advantage of the time we are given and make the future the best we can.