By Willis Washington, The City Sentinel
OKLAHOMA CITY, OK – Rediscovering the need for social interaction, and why it’s so important:
Through direct contact or indirect contact like seeing what others or doing on social media platforms like Facebook.
Social relation or social interaction is any relationship between two or more individuals. In my opinion it’s another form of communication used to connect.
In November of 2019 I was invited to an adaptive deer hunt hosted by the Bar Circle F New Discoveries Hunt just outside of Jay, Oklahoma — during the crossbow hunting season.
This was only my second time ever going hunting. I am not a die-hard fan of killing animals but I understand that throughout our history animals have been used as a source of food to survive.
I was excited to get away from the hustle and business of life to unplug and spend time with some good friends who I do not get to see or hangout with as much as I would like because we are all so busy living or trying to make a living. Attempting to crossbow hunt for the first time was fun, it was new; something different, a new challenge!
I saw some deer even took a few shots but did not successfully bring home any deer meat or deer jerky that I had heard so much about.
What I think we all found out was how much we all needed to reconnect, catch up and just joke, laugh, and enjoy our time together. Hunting takes patience, skill, and being quiet for long periods of time. During that time you have a lot of time to think and reflect about life, decisions made in your past and decisions that you need to make in your future.
Why am I sharing this hunting trip and experience with readers of The City Sentinel?
Well, in light of the Coronavirus disease or COVID-19 as it’s called; I have been stripped of the freedom, and choice to do things that I like with others. And, I am realizing how I have taken that for granted. Being socially responsible and listening to the medical experts and Oklahoma state and federal leaders, I understand the need to practice social distancing. The outbreak of this epidemic I dare say caught us all off guard and has changed how we function and live our daily lives.
The new normal of social distancing has its Pros and Cons that we are all starting to discover for ourselves as we get through this epidemic.
There is a small percentage of our population of people who do not care to have any social interaction with other people. I know that I am not part of that group. I enjoy spending time with my family, friends, business associates, and acquaintances.
So now that we have the time or more time (for a little bit longer), let’s use it.
Reach out to an old friend, classmate, service member, or senior and check up on them. There is no telling how that could lift someone’s spirits from just having a conversation.
I would like to thank the Bar Circle F New Discoveries Hunt, and host John Fields and Family, Lance Fields, Jose Rivera, and Larry Mendenhall for organizing the first annual adaptive hunt for individuals with disabilities.
We each would all like to thank and acknowledge LL Sporting Good Store and L & L Outdoors for their equipment and sponsorship of our hunt.
The Bar Circle F plans to continue this hunt annually in the future to give disabled individuals an opportunity to get out, try something new or different, and embrace the camaraderie of reconnecting socially with their peers and nature.
NOTE: Willis Washington is an ADA ICC Compliance Inspector and Certified Aging in Place Specialist also known as CAPS and has completed levels I, II, & III with the Oklahoma State Homebuilders Association and currently works for Ato Z Commercial and Residential Inspections. He was recently accepted into the Oklahoma University Graduate School Degree Program to become a Regional City Planner. This analysis first appeared in The City Sentinel newspaper’s April print edition, where his stories are printed frequently. To read his March print edition story, go here. And, check out his introductory essay at The City Sentinel newspaper here.