According to the dictionary, a pandemic is a disease that is prevalent over the world or an entire country. We, here in Crestview and in the United States, are in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic.

Although we may be having this pandemic, we don’t need to panic and hoard supplies.

Because of those who are older or may have compromised immune systems, we have been asked to stay home and keep our germs to ourselves. However, many of our older neighbors will need help getting needed supplies now that we have been asked to only go out when necessary.

The hoarding of supplies is getting out of hand. Many people can’t find everyday necessities to purchase as those in panic mode have purchased all the toilet paper, bottled water, hand sanitizer, bread, meats, frozen meals and so forth. We need to purchase what we need, not hoarding quantities, and leave some supplies for others.

There are many Americans who may not be able to get to the grocery store. We can show kindness by offering to take their list to the store and bring them needed groceries, or go to the drug store and pick up their prescriptions.

The book of Ephesians, states that we are to be kind to one another. We need to practice kindness to our friends, neighbors, strangers as well as our families.

This incident happened this week, and unfortunately this man didn’t practice kindness. A father was looking for his developmentally disabled daughter on a hot afternoon and got overheated. He asked a neighbor for a cold bottle of water. The neighbor offered to trade a bottle of water for a roll of toilet paper. I am still astounded by this response, where was the kindness in this man’s heart?

On the flip side, when my neighbor was at the hospital recently and was going to the parking lot in the pouring rain, an elderly woman offered to take my neighbor to her car with her umbrella. What love was shown by this woman? Isn’t this the way we should respond to those in need?

Truckers who are moving goods across the country so we have needed supplies have a problem. Many fast food restaurants have closed their lobbies and the big rig trucks are too large to go through the “drive thru” lane. If you see a big rig at a fast food place, offer to go through the fast food lane for them and get their order as many restaurants refuse walk ups to their drive thru lanes. Small acts of kindness go a long way.

If you can spare the supplies, make a care package with a couple rolls of toilet paper, hand sanitizer, a loaf of bread and some bottles of water to your elderly neighbors and offer to make a grocery run for them. There are many ways we can show kindness to one another. Let’s make this process as easy as we can on each other.

Janice Lynn Crose, a former accountant, lives in Crestview with her husband, Jim; her two rescue collies, Shane and Jasmine; and two cats, Kathryn and Prince Valiant.