SELF-ISOLATION, DAY 19; MAKE MY DAY
This Lady made my day
I have been a little ashamed the past 2 days I was tired and kind of down. Of course, we all go up and down. One thing I have learned over the past several years has been that when I feel down, sad; I know it is just now and I will feel better again. Therapy with a professional therapist has helped me a lot. Something has been going on over time here; I am losing my fear of being myself; letting my friends and family see me…. I do not know what difference it makes… but I no longer wish to appear as some artificial image of who I might like the world to see. Who I am is a profound question for all of us. But.. to my story today:
So, I was quite tired last night after work, as I wrote. This AM I was still a bit tired but my mood was better. So, I was working and as I have said, we do not have masks available. There are some vinyl or plastic or latex gloves available. A young woman came up to me, wearing a mask, it looked likely the N95 mask. She needed a particular kind of beer. Fortunately I was able to help her find it. As I have said, I have become more open in speaking with people, initiating a conversation. 60 years ago I would not have imagined myself today. So, I asked her, “pardon me ma’am, I hope you don’t mind my asking, but where did you get your mask? “ She replied, “my husband is a police officer!” So I continued on with the discussion, that it was good that he was taking care of his family, and I appreciate that he is out there as a first responder. I said that it is hard to get a mask and I can either go to work or not. I am kind of fatalistic about it. I truly was not trying to get a mask from her. So she pulled a surgical mask from her purse. For those who don’t know, a surgical mask can screen out aerosol droplets from your breath, nose and in surgery or some other procedure, can help prevent contamination of a surgical field. The N95 mask is designed to prevent the passage of these tiny submicroscopic virus particles. I have worn both in my past life in the medical field. I had an N95 mask during the 2009 H1N1 influenza epidemic. In any case, I told her, “No, I just want you to take care of yourself, your family and your husband who is out there as a first-responder.” So, we exchanged conversation for a minute and she said she had a couple others and it did not matter. So, I accepted it and wished her and her family well, and to stay safe. I nearly cried. By now, those of you who know me know that I can be an emotional old whatever. It was not quite as significant, but for me it felt almost like someone giving me their life vest. OK, now I am crying. Sorry! OK? But she did not have to do that. Yeah, she has her own mask, which is good. If I were a cop or still a doctor and could acquire an N95 mask for the one I love, you bet your ass I would make sure I took care of my family. So, I do NOT believe that doctors or nurses or the police are hoarding the masks from the rest of us. I DO believe that the administration has totally screwed up and is not doing everything it can to care for us citizens. That’s another story.
But my story is the story of two people meeting during a time of trial; an epidemic; a time when many more than usual will die. And one made a significant gesture to care for a stranger. So, it is so easy to find stories of people being mean to each other. But… and I guess I am a kind of “cup is half-full” kind of guy; there is a lot of kindness. It made the rest of my day. Wore it most of the time. I have it drying under a lamp in my bathroom. I do not have ultraviolet light, so I can only hope to dry it and maybe if there are any COVID-19 viruses on it, they might die, and tomorrow I will wear it again to try to help prevent the spread of the virus. Maybe I will not get sick and die.
This brings me to the next part of my blog, dear readers! This whole blog-thing is about how I feel each day during our isolation, our partial lock-down, our trying to survive the pandemic of 2020. One part of me does NOT accept that I could potentially acquire this virus, get sick and die, feeling very miserable. I just have decided I will NOT get sick. Does brute-force power of will count? I have no idea. Another part knows, when it is night, the sky is dark, I am tired and awake in the early hours and know I could just get sick and die like many others. It is just the world. Life. Life and Death. What I want to tell all of you is that we should NOT worry so much about dying from COVID-19, if we truly have religious/spiritual thoughts about Life. About, why we live and what it really means to live our lives. I return time and again to the final moments of my wife’s last moments, more than 13 years ago. She was already beginning to transition from this world in her body into the next. She did not speak. I watched as she stopped breathing. I touched her cheek and it was no longer soft. No longer living. That changed my life as I knew then that I would die. At some point my spirit/soul will separate from my body. It is true for all of us. This can be a profound awakening for all of us. We should not be afraid.
So, my friends, my sisters and brothers. Please believe in each other, in the Divine within each of us. That God, the One, however you perceive the Universal Spirit in the Universe and within each of us, is alive and loving us. We cannot know where we are all going, but, please,
Be safe, stay well, believe in the higher powers, the Divine in us. We can do this together.
David, April, 4, 2020
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