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According to experts in the psychology field, the five stages of grief can be defined as denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance. One could call the massive shift we’ve been experiencing as a result of the coronavirus pandemic – the loss of our carefree days of travel and packed group gatherings – something that’s certainly worthy of the grieving process. And in recent weeks, it’s become obvious that America needs help moving past the “denial” stage, with people selfishly engaging in risky activities, from refusing to wear masks to crowding into bars, despite the clear-as-day dangers they pose.

Back in March and April, we were mostly in the mindset of, “OK, let’s hunker down and get through this. Then we can get back to normal.” But when COVID-19 cases began surging uncontrollably across the sunbelt this summer, the realization came to light that what we consider “normal” no longer exists. Businesses that rely on in-person interactions to operate are shuttering or changing their operation models. If the pandemic continues into 2021 or longer, that corner restaurant, bar or beauty salon you once loved may either not be there or will look very different, meaning it will no longer be possible to experience it as you did in “normal” times.

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Natasha Chilingerian

Natasha Chilingerian has worked in the credit union space for over a decade. She joined CU Times as managing editor in 2015 and was promoted to executive editor in 2019. Before that, she served as a communications specialist for Xceed Financial Credit Union (now Kinecta Federal Credit Union) in Los Angeles from 2013-2015, and as a CU Times freelancer from 2011-2013. She has been a professional writer and editor for more than 17 years, specializing in news and lifestyle journalism as well as marketing copywriting for companies in the finance and technology space.

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