The coronavirus pandemic continues to overwhelmingly alter human affairs. Schools are closed, travelling’s practically impossible, and families and loved ones have been forced apart for months.
Some things we once took for granted, like dropping the kids off at grandma’s house, are temporarily shelved.
We can’t wait for the world to “return to normal” – life doesn’t work that way.
Instead we’ve been forced to adapt to new circumstances. But adaptation begets innovation.
10-year-old Paige Okray certainly isn’t waiting around for anything.
Recently, she created something extraordinary.
Paige waits patiently outside her grandparents’ home. Something’s a little different – the door’s shielded by a giant plastic sheet featuring four cut-outs slots for arms. It looks like something you’d see in a surgical facility… or a sci-fi.
Paige continues to wait…
Grandma answers, absolutely shocked. She takes a moment to process what she sees. She’s overjoyed!
As the door opens, Paige excitedly declares, “You get to hug me!”
Grandma’s unable to contain her excitement,
“Oh my god, oh my god!! Ohhh, I love you!!!”
Paige’s mother, filming the interaction, proceeds to add, “It might be wet from the Lysol wipes.”
Grandma doesn’t care, immediately feeding her arms through the plastic and proceeding to hug her loving granddaughter.
Paige’s mom, Lindsay Okray, posted about the exchange on Facebook, stating,
“Paige saw a video of someone who made this type of “blanket” to hug their family. She put together a list and she designed it so she could hug nana and papa.. this girl is so freaking amazing ❤️ and we were so happy to be able to hug them!!”
Instead of a blanket, she took things a step further – a plastic partition the size of a door with cut-out protective arm sleeves for safe physical interaction. Otherwise known as a “hug curtain.”
Her tools: a shower curtain, disposable plates, Ziploc bags, and a glue gun.
Paige and her grandmother continue to embrace – it’s been a while. They’re making up for months of lost hugs.
The family’s taking social distancing very seriously. Mother Lindsay is actually a nurse at Riverside Community Hospital in California. She’s seen firsthand the impact coronavirus has had on her community.
Hug one is followed by a tighter second.
Grandpa soon joins in on the fun. He’s ecstatic, giving Paige a bear hug.
There’s more than enough love to go around.
Paige looks so happy.
Lindsay went on to tell KABC,
“She came up with the idea, she laid it out in the family room and spent multiple hours working on it.”
She’s so proud of her daughter.
Paige’s quite the engineer. Grandpa keeps the love going.
Paige’s heartwarming efforts are simply unforgettable.
Lindsay’s video of the interaction set the worldwide web ablaze. Reporter Alexander Greensmith commented with the following,
Hi Lindsay, I am captivated by this innovative and adorable invention. I’d love to write an article for it to be sent to the UK national press. It is important we share this love in these trying times! So please do not hesitate to get in touch if you are interested via Messenger. I shall eagerly await your reply. Thank you Lindsay, Alexander Greensmith. Reporter. Media Drum World.
For now, life goes on completely changed. Things aren’t going to “go back to normal” just yet. But fortunately, this won’t be the reality forever.
In the meantime, we must continue to adapt to the ever-changing new abnormal – Paige certainly has.
Even in the face of adversity, let’s make the most of the moment.
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