HOUSTON — It’s a springtime Saturday night, and for high school seniors somewhere, that would mean tuxes and limousines.
But thanks to coronavirus, prom night came to an end before it ever began.
Her hair is done. The dress is on. Her date is Dad.
“It meant the world to me to have them plan all of this for me," said Maddie Ramirez, a Clear Springs High School senior.
Maddie’s senior prom looks nothing like she’d imagine, but still, she said yes.
“I don’t really know a whole lot as to what will be happening tonight, but I am very excited and looking forward to it," she said.
From the crystal stemware to the catered dinner, it’s prom during a pandemic.
“It was one of the most, I don’t know, it was just so crushing to not be able to have that experience," Maddie said.
The time-honored tradition looks very different these days.
“It’s still a fun experience that I'll be able to have, even though it’s not exactly the same," Maddie said.
But parents are proving even coronavirus can’t crash this party.
Taylor Smith became the prom queen in her house when mom surprised her with a crown and corsage made from her wedding bouquet.
And for Destyn Scales, Saturday night’s prom is at home. But it includes dinner and a dance DJ’ed by her cousin through Instagram.
“We wanted to make a prom and that’s what we did," her mom Denise said.
Destyn's favorite part about this prom is it’s all about her: her menu, her music, her memories.
“It’s really important just to have that experience, with friends or family, it doesn’t matter," her sister Domenique said.
It's an experience that’s now become a family affair. Everyone’s invited.
“We have dad, he’ll be there, little brother, he’ll be there. We’ll all be dressed and having a good time," Denise said.
It may not be the prom they planned for, but it’s one they may cherish even more.
“How my family wanted me to have this experience, how they helped me," Destyn said.
The symptoms of coronavirus can be similar to the flu or a bad cold. Symptoms include a fever, cough and shortness of breath, according to the Centers for Disease Control. Some patients also have nausea, body aches, headaches and stomach issues. Losing your sense of taste and/or smell can also be an early warning sign.
Most healthy people will have mild symptoms. A study of more than 72,000 patients by the Centers for Disease Control in China showed 80 percent of the cases there were mild.
But infections can cause pneumonia, severe acute respiratory syndrome, kidney failure and even death, according to the World Health Organization. Older people with underlying health conditions are most at risk for becoming seriously ill. However, U.S. experts are seeing a significant number of younger people being hospitalized, including some in ICU.
The CDC believes symptoms may appear anywhere from two to 14 days after being exposed.
Human coronaviruses are usually spread through...
- The air by coughing or sneezing
- Close personal contact, such as touching or shaking hands
- Touching an object or surface with the virus on it, then touching your mouth, nose or eyes before washing your hands.
Help stop the spread of coronavirus
- Stay home when you are sick.
- Eat and sleep separately from your family members
- Use different utensils and dishes
- Cover your cough or sneeze with your arm, not your hand.
- If you use a tissue, throw it in the trash.
- Follow social distancing
Lower your risk
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
- If you are 60 or over and have an underlying health condition such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes or respiratory illnesses like asthma or COPD, the World Health Organization advises you to try to avoid crowds or places where you might interact with people who are sick.
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