MIchelle Obama is sending comfort to all Americans who are isolating themselves in order to avoid contracting the coronavirus.
Via Instagram, the former first lady wanted to let everyone know they’re not alone during this pandemic and that we’re all in this together.
“These past few weeks have been scary and difficult for many of us,” she wrote. “We just don’t have a roadmap for what we’re currently experiencing—that in and of itself can bring up feelings of anxiety, loneliness, and fear. Whatever you’re going through right now, I want you to know you aren’t alone. Even as we practice social distancing, this new normal is something we are figuring out together.”
“Social distancing” has become the new normal since COVID-19 broke out in the United States earlier this month. To that end, Obama shared tips on how people can help their community while in isolation.
“Contact your local school and sign up to volunteer with their food distribution program,” one of her suggestions reads. “Know a teacher or two? Reach out and ask how you can help.”
Obama also suggested offering to pick up groceries for those in the community who are at a greater risk of contracting the coronavirus. “Search online and get involved with neighborhood groups that may already be assisting,” she wrote.
Other suggestions include: ordering takeout from a local restaurant, buying a gift certificate for that restaurant to use later or donating to a local business in the community.
According to the Center for Disease Control, symptoms from COVID-19 may appear 2 to 14 days after exposure (based on the incubation period of MERS-CoV viruses). Symptoms include fever, coughing and shortness of breath.
For the latest on the coronavirus, contact your local health department and visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website.
See Michelle Obama’s Instagram post below.
Photo: Paul Morigi/Getty Images for Glamour