It’s so strange though. Hard to process it all. Even harder to know what steps we truly need to be taking, where the line from preparation and panic lies anymore. Not sure how to make this new reality fit into my world. -Brittany Mackenzie
What’s the count?
This is the question we wake up to here in the Alvarez home. Lauren, especially, will ask this when she wakes up to me watching the news. It’s not a bad question. It’s a rather neutral one if you think about it. Just someone asking for a number.
But things are different in the time of Corona. We are asking how many people are infected around the world and in the USA. We are asking how many more have tested positive in our county. We are asking how many are dead today. That’s what we really want to know. How many are dead? How close is that death to where we are? When will it all end?
I have no idea what the answer to that last question is. I don’t even know when we are going to stop asking those questions. Viruses never really stop. They come and go in waves and will continue to do that until we get a vaccine to slow them down.
But this time it is different than before. We have had global pandemics before in my life time. We have had viruses go across the planet and take millions of lives. I don’t remember ever having to wake up every day and ask what the count was. I don’t remember waking up and feeling lost about or insecure about it.
I remember the H1N1 virus. I got it and was laid up in bed for about a week. Too fatigued to even get up and walk around. But I wasn’t panicked about it. No one was rushing to stock up on anything. No one was thinking “this thing is going to kill us all”. The stock markets did not crash. Not even close. And when I think about why I realized the answer is simple.
We trusted our leader at that time. We did not think of him as some incompetent fool like the one we have now. We didn’t wake up every morning wondering if our president was going to help us or just find some way to profit off our deaths. We live in a sad time. We got ourselves in the mess ourselves and I hope we are able to get out of it this November. That’s all I got to say about that.
Through the eyes of a pandemic
I saw a man walking across the street the other day. He was walking back and forth wringing his hands and shaking his head no every once in a while. I don’t know he was. But he was the first customer to the La Quinta Inn across the street in days. For over a week their parking had been empty and suddenly this man checked in. Probably the only man in the hotel. He was in his 40’s, Asian, and a smoker.
Every evening for 3 days he walked back and forth for a couple of hours. He paced up and down like a man waiting to here the news about a dear relative after a major operation. He was stressed and talking to himself. He would pull at his own hair as he walked. Masked people walked by him and he never looked up.
It was a point of professional pride (when I was a detective) for me to be able to read people. To look for clues in their behavior that others can’t see and make reasonable conclusions as to who they were and what was going on in their lives. To make educated guesses, and to be right a majority of the time. But it isn’t that simple nowadays. I see everything through the eyes of the pandemic now. The added stress of the pandemic has so changed people’s lives that nothing seems normal anymore. Everything in our lives seems exaggerated and convoluted and we are not sure of our own direction. Many people don’t know who they are anymore so how could I? I look around and all I see is the coronavirus. I am affected too.
A person can stress, but so can a people.
A mindset of despair among a community is just as serious as a virus. It can linger long after the actual physical threat is gone and we are going to have to account for that when this thing is finally over. We are going to have to help each other out of this when this is over as a community or we will never be the same again.
Is there a doctor in the house?
Among the small group of people I associate with at my apartment complex is a young couple who work in the medical field. It is my understanding that they are both therapists and have doctorates in their fields. And, if I do say so myself, it is about time we found some doctors to join our little group. If only because I have always wanted to find a reason to use the above gif from the movie Spies like Us.
I also mention them here because I, like the rest of us that know them here, are in awe of what they do every day. We hardly see them nowadays. I have no doubt that they, like most in the medical field, are working overtime and putting themselves right in the front lines of what is going in the world today.
When I do see them it’s usually out jogging or walking their dogs. Both of which they seem to do several times a day and usually at some ungodly hour of the morning. I’m up at that time because I am not healthy and can’t sleep. They are up because they are healthy. Quite the big difference there. And, to be honest, I no longer remember what they look like either, because they, being doctors and smarter than the rest of us, wear their masks literally all the time outside of their apartment in this time of corona. I mean all the time. They are both probably going to have surgical mask tan lines when this is over.
But it is as it should be. And those that serve others like our doctors and nurses who put themselves in harms way deserve all the respect and honor we can show them. They are the best among us.
Blue is bored
I caught blue dozing off watching Trump lie about the pandemic. He handles it much better than I do. Oh to be a dog in the time of Corona.
Hope all of you are doing well. Stay safe by staying home.