Tag Archives: #pandemic2020

I’m terrified….

Helluva post title, huh?

But really…I am. And no, it’s not because I’ve just read the latest Stephen King novel.

2020 has been as close to apocalyptic as any year in my lifetime of 60 years on this earth.

This is not the country I wanted to leave for my daughter when I envisioned what her world would look like.

The thing that terrifies me the most is when we got back to what most of us would consider normal :being about to hug one another, not wearing face masks, eating inside a restaurant again, attending an actual school and not a computer classroom, many of the things we’d learned and practiced for a lifetime will be gone.

I’m talking about manners and life skills.

Holding the door if you proceed someone through it. Saying “God Bless you” if someone sneezes ( into the elbow region!!) Letting another person finish speaking and not interrupting. Saying a simple please and thank you. Smiling. Sharing ( not hoarding). Looking out for one another. Not yelling to make your point. Helping elderly people or anyone who needs it, be it a physical ailment or disability. Going to church. Respecting one another.

We’ve been isolated, quarantined, and removed from one another due to this pandemic. Well, most of us have. There are those idiots out there…but that is for another blog. Many of us have worked from home and don’t even get dressed from the waist down ( or up,  for that matter) when attending internet meetings or classes.

I’m terrified we’ve lost…us. Our love for one another. Our respect. Our beliefs and practices. Our knowledge of right and wrong. Our basic social skills.

I’m terrified we’ve turned into an narcissistic, whining, confrontational, and spoiled bunch of brats who only worry about our own lives, our own finances, our own little space in the world.

What effect is this all going to have on our children? What kind of world are they going to be subjected to when the world turns right side up again – if it turns right side up again.

Maybe you think I’m being dramatic. I dare say I may be. But I know I’m not the only one worried about the present state of our world and what 2021 and beyond is going to look like for our children, ourselves, and our planet.

As for me, well, I’m going to remember my social skills. Even when I am in a store today, masked, and hand-sanitized, I still hold the door for others. Many don’t say thank you or even acknowledge my action with an eye flick, but I still do it. I say please and thank you – I think now more than I ever did before. I certainly say I love you a lot more to the people I do love. A whole lot more. Who knows if this may be the last time I get to say it…show it.

I’m determined to remember who I am – and was before the world turned upside down – and take that into the future with me. It’s really the only way I can keep my terror of what’s to come contained.

Just sayin…

 

 

 

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The lonely goodbye…. #covid19 #quarantinelife

I didn’t have a blog piece planned today.

I was going to take a break for a day because the rest of the week and into the weekend is already plotted for me. But as I was trolling Facebook this morning, one of my friends posted this picture and I knew i had to write something to express how it made me feel when I spotted it.

If you know me you know how important my Catholic faith is to me. You also know that I have a medical background and sometimes the two theologies war with one another when I’m faced with decisions I need to make that have consequences. This may be the first time in my life that both teachings have collided so forcefully for me.

All that aside, when I saw this photo I started crying.

Inconsolably.

I don’t know what I would do, how I would be able to survive, if someone I loved died alone because they were in isolation. To not be able to be there when their last breath on this earth is expelled; to not be able to hold their hand while their soul leaves for Heaven; to be unable to kiss their forehead or cheek, or hug them one last time before you never see them again. I know in my heart, despite my faith, I wouldn’t be able to go on.

This is something I never talk about, but today I’m willing to share it because I need to face that the current pandemic may effect me in just this way. I am not afraid of many things. Truly, I’m not. But the one fear I do have and which is my biggest fear in life, is dying alone or having someone I love die without me there with them.

To be cut off from the people you love most in the world, to be isolated in a room surrounded by machines, shut off from human contact because hands are double gloved, faces are masked, and clothing is covered by protective gear, to not be able to hold the hand of your spouse or parent or child as they leave this planet and this life. All those things terrify me.

My darling daughter is quarantined 300 miles away from me. I have not seen her since Christmas. If she were to be stricken with the virus I would go mad with worry. Stark raving mad. Not to be able to care for her, touch her, be with her, would send me over the edge mentally and emotionally. I’m sobbing right now writing this at just the thought.

My parents are 30 minutes away from me and quarantined in their mobile home. Both are high risk due to age and chronic conditions and they have seen no one other than me when I deliver food to them for almost a month. I jumped on the bandwagon of self isolation early because I could see what was coming and I knew they were at risk. If either of them were stricken and, God forbid died, my heart would break because I couldn’t be with them.

Every night I pray for my family, my friends, the people of this country and then the world. To die is part of living, I know that and I get it. But to die alone, without the people who love you and who you love with you, is by far the worse thing I can think of. Human touch, the human one-on-one connection, is so ingrained in us as a species, that to be robbed of the ability to reach out and touch another person, or to sit with them or offer comfort, is anathema and counterintuitive to who and what we are.

As this pandemic kills even more people and destroys the lives of those left behind to survive without their loved ones, I am taking my cue today from Pope Francis and praying for all those who have died alone, and for those families who have never had a chance to kiss them goodbye.

And I am keeping all the front line doctors, nurses, police, fire fighters and EMTS who have become surrogates for so many loved ones,  in my prayers as well.  Their sacrifices can not have been made in vain.

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Are you self isolating because of Covid 19? I’m a recluse, so here are some tips for survival

Panic, it appears, has infected the globe.

While I’m not saying it’s a bad thing to take all these precautions against spreading and/or catching the corona virus, most people are not used to being isolated in their home, unable to go outside to do anything for a minimum of 14 days JUST IN CASE they have the virus. Most people are social beings and need to be around others to talk, interact, bitch and gossip.

I’m not like most people. I self isolate routinely.

I could use the excuse it’s because I have a solitary career, being a writer and all, but that’s only half of it. I like being alone. I truly do.

So because I am used to being sequestered in the house, where sometimes a week can go by and I have only left it once to grocery shop and care for my parents, I know how to survive the long days where you may feel as if you are the only person on the planet. Here are a few tips so you don’t go crazy.

  1. even if you are not leaving the house, get up and take a shower and get dressed every day. This is your norm, isn’t it? Even when you go on vacay you still do this. Do it now. (Full disclosure here: sometimes I don’t do this until about 5 in the evening when I know hubby will be home in a few hours! )
  2. if you are working from home, work. Don’t watch TV, play a video game, or binge watch sixteen seasons of MASH on Netflix. Do what you’re supposed to be doing. Believe me, it helps off set depression and keeps you on schedule mentally and physically.
  3. make your bed. The desire to crawl back into it during the day is lessened if it’s already make. And don’t grab you laptop and work in you bed. The bed is for sleeping, recreational…sports, and making babies. Not for WORK.
  4. get some exercise. If you can walk outside even for a little while and you can avoid crowds, do it. I have a home gym so I get to exercise everyday no matter what the weather. If you live someplace with a gym on premises, or even have  a home gym like I do, utilize it.
  5. Take a lunch break. You do when you’re at the office, or wherever you work, right? This is the one time you can watch tv if you want. When I take a lunch break I typically watch THE VIEW on ABC and walk on my treadmill for an hour. I combine a break with exercise. Works for me.
  6. if you are truly isolating or working at home because YOU MAY have come in contact with Covid 19, you can still interact and talk with people via Skype, Face time, or any of the other phone/computer apps where you can actually SEE people you are talking to. My daughter’s company has made them all work at home until the end of March and we have had “lunch” together a few times via facetime. She’s eating, I’m eating, and we’re talking and planning.
  7. eat on schedule. DON’T GRAZE or snack. When  you have to get back into work clothes after doing this for a few weeks you will be pissed at the weight gain you could have prevented.
  8. if you no longer work but are isolating at home, my number one thing to do to drive off the boredom is READ. This, I feel, is why e-devices were invented. Even if you don’t have a kindle, but you have an IPAD, you can upload the kindle app for free or even the Nook app. There are literally thousands of free books you can borrow from Amazon, but you can also find oodles of 99cents books from new-to-you authors or recommendations from other people for good books. The other day on my FB page I asked my author friends to post links to their current books so people who were at home could download them to read.  Check it out, here: Recommend a book via FB

And now I just want to get a few things off my chest about this panic and why people are making me insane.

  1. If your kid’s school is CLOSED it’s not a license to take them on fields trips to museums, the movies, the mall, MacDonald’s playland, or anywhere where they are around crowds. The school is closed to keep them safe from catching the virus. Dragging them all over the place because they are bored – or you are – is putting them in danger, precisely what closing the schools was to meant prevent! Think with your brains, people!
  2. Corvid 19 is a RESPIRATORY virus not a GASTRIC one. If you get it you will be SNOTTY not SHITTY. STOP HOARDING TOILET PAPER!!! No person alive needs a gross of tp for 2 weeks of isolation. Even the Duggars don’t go through that much much in 14 days!!!
  3. If you are not feeling well – STAY HOME!!!
  4. Stop touching your face. I was at Mass last week and the priest on the altar kept swiping at his nose. Why my husband got mad at me because I didn’t want to receive from this guy is a mystery!!!! My nails are starting to grow for the first time in decades because I haven’t been biting them.
  5. Cough and sneeze into your elbow and teach your snotty little kids to do it, too! I was at Mass – again- last week and a six year old sneezed full faced so hard I thought he was gonna push out brain matter. Did he cover his nose and mouth? That would be NO! HE just let lose all over the people in the pew in front of him. It took every Catholic bone in my body not to scream at him and his parents.
  6. Don’t wipe up disinfectant after you spray or swipe it on a surface. The purpose of disinfectant is to DRY on the area you put it on in order to kill the germs. If you spray it on something and then wipe it off, you are doing no good.
  7. WASH YOUR HANDS. EVERY SINGLE TIME. I’m a nurse, so I was taught to wash my hands BEFORE AND AFTER I use the bathroom. Still do to this day.
  8. Use hand sanitizer LIBERALLY. Rub it in. I don’t care if you smell like bleach and no one else does either. Bleach is a good, clean smell. Use it as cologne for all I care, just use it.

Truly the most important thing you can do to get through this trying time is not panic.

Panic benefits no one.

Listen to the suggestions and isolate at home, wash your hands, avoid crowds, and cough or sneeze into your elbow.

This, too, will pass. And it will do so much quicker if we all use common sense and take necessary precautions.

And above all else STOP HARDING TOILET PAPER!!!!!!!!

Rant over…until next time, peeps ~Peg

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