Of course, I don’t like wearing a mask. Does anyone? It is hot, uncomfortable, makes my breathing feel constrained, but mostly it adds to the isolation, the loneliness of this pandemic. Not only are we supposed to stay away from others, keep a safe distance, minimize contact and interaction but now we cannot share a smile, gauge others’ reactions. It is as though we are with others but still alone, in our thoughts, our facial expressions stifled; if a tree falls in the forest and nobody is there to hear it, did it make a sound? I did not realize how important a smile was until I could no longer see others smiling and often I feel I cannot hear properly not because of bad hearing but because we watch people’s mouths move to understand their intonations.
But none of these feelings should allow for NOT wearing a mask. Wearing a mask today is scientifically and medically advised. Medical experts say it is at least 50% (more likely 60%) effective at stopping the spread of the virus. The question is not why wear a mask, it is why would you NOT wear a mask? Our President seems to believe that wearing a mask makes you weak, stupid even and that not wearing one shows some sort of bravado. But he is entirely missing the point. This is not about showing anybody anything. This is not about proving any points, winning any arguments. Wearing a mask is simply about showing respect for our fellow human beings. Wearing a mask during this pandemic says “I care about you. I want you to be as safe as possible in my presence and I want you to KNOW that I care about your safety”. Our President does not understand what all parents trying to be good parents know inherently- the best way to teach is not by preaching (though he does not even preach mask-wearing, he openly mocks it) but by example. If I want my child to eat nicely I need to model eating nicely. If I want my child to speak kindly, I must model speaking kindly. If I want my child to be honest, I must act honestly. Wearing a mask should not divide our country into blue and red. If there are places in the United States lucky enough not to know the tragedies of Covid deaths we are grateful for that and hope they never do. But this pandemic moves mysteriously and quickly. Your State, your County may be next; however far-fetched that may seem where you are now. Hopefully, those in the Country who have not suffered will not suffer. We do not wish suffering on anyone, but in solidarity to our other countrymen who have suffered and lost loved ones we wear a mask anyway. We wear helmets when we bicycle and ski, warm gloves in wintertime, sunglasses in the summer and scarves to protect our throats in the cold, wearing a mask during this pandemic is much the same thing. But it is more: A mask says I care and I don’t want anything bad to befall you because of me. Let’s all remember who we are and who we want our children to be. Model kind behavior. Start by wearing a mask in public, our children will be kinder for it and it may just save a life.
Atara Twersky, Author of Curlee Girlee is a TODAY Show Style Icon. The Curlee Girlee book series was inspired by author, Atara Twersky’s young daughter and written for all young curly girls in an effort to ensure they love and embrace their natural hair so that they will become the women they are meant to be understanding that their hair is part of who they are and part of a greater legacy they share with those who came before them.For some ideas on how to make your own masks, check out our blog here.
Join us as together we change the “coarse” of curly hair. Don’t forget to check out our recent article on What to Do or Say if Your Daughter is Showing Signs of Hating Her Curly Hair.