Pandemic ~ I Don’t Know What to Write

Looks like we’re going into Fall with a new surge of COVID-19 Delta Variant. Most likely through the Winter too. My pandemic hair is growing longer and whiter. Other than that I’m settling in, using common sense and using self-care and respect for others along the way. Be Safe, Mask UP and Please Get Vaccinated!

I’m not sure if the white hair is caused by the year-and-a-half long pandemic or if my hair stylist did a fantastic job applying low lights over the years. It’s just that I was ‘shocked’ when I snapped a selfie while sitting outside in the patio. My inside hair doesn’t look this white. I’m growing comfortable with the natural look as I approach 80 years old.

What I’m not comfortable with is the uncertainty of where we’re heading in this United States of America. The EU has set travel restrictions for unvaccinated Americans. We’ve been taken off the safe list. Schools have already begun quarantining students who’ve tested positive even though the new year has just begun. Teachers are going to be teaching both in-person and on-line instruction. Most discouraging of all, our hospitals and health care workers are, once again, collapsing under this new surge.

So, I don’t know what to write this time. We’re all tired and anxious. Especially those who have families and responsibilities that have been disrupted. Being retired, the surges haven’t been as disruptive to my life while navigating through my day. The set backs in life that others are experiencing are life changing! And then there are so many deaths.

Top Five ~ Worldometer ~ August 31st

Today is my Sixth Anniversary with WordPress! Time well spent! I literally pour out my heart and soul into this blog/website. It has been an important part of my recovery and healing from various medical issues over the last six years. I’m hoping to revive my blogging and get past this brain fog that’s crept in due to COVID-19. Each day I am grateful to be in this world. The one thing we can control is how we respond to what this life places on our path. And this is what I write about!

Pandemic 2020-21 ~ May

The Finish Line???

“Today is a great day for America, ………“Get vaccinated — or wear a mask until you do.”

“We’ve gotten this far — please protect yourself until you get to the finish line.”

~President Biden~

The numbers; the cases, the deaths and the hospitalizations have suddenly plunged here in the United States. And in what seemed to be an about face, the CDC declared no more masks for those who are fully vaccinated. Forty Percent of the nation has been vaccinated. And the rest, for various reasons, remain unvaccinated and continue to be at risk of infection. Along with the announcement came confusion.

On May 13th, 2021, there were 39,825 new cases here in America and 791 new deaths (Worldometer.com):

~Thinking of India ~

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So, as the confusion settles, it comes down to continuing to do what you need to do to feel safe. I’ll be wearing a mask in situations where I’m coming in contact with others. This is my season of rest. My time to slow down. So ‘back to normal’ for me is what it has been even through this pandemic. I’m easing up of my expectations for myself. A season of rest which is nice at this stage of my life.

Ways to accept and lean into a season of rest:

https://ericalayne.co/7-ways-to-accept-and-lean-into-a-season-of-rest/?fbclid=IwAR2oueExGi4ZuibTX3nbvFA7-gtfMPsmTECE2OzgRKiEXcueSBjZEDGPynM

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~Allow~ 

There is no controlling life.
Try corralling a lightning bolt,
Containing a tornado.
Dam a stream and it will create a new channel.

Resist, and the tide will sweep you off your feet.
Allow, and grace will carry you to a higher ground.
The only safety lies in letting it all in –
The wild and the weak: fear, fantasies, failures and success.

When loss rips off the doors of the heart, or sadness veils your vision with despair,
Practice becomes simply bearing the truth.
In the choice to let go of your known way of being,
The whole world is revealed to your new eyes.

By: Danna Faulds

Pandemic 2020-21 ~ February

Have the new jab

The roll out of vaccines continues to improve after a very fitful start! It was just by a fluke that I happened to snag my appointment early on by filling out the survey with the health department. I had no idea that I’d be one of the first 5,000 in our district to be put in the pilot program with the University of Virginia 75 plus Employee Health. As of now, I’m feeling relief that I have both #1 and #2 dose when I see so many getting frustrated with the mechanics of securing their appointments. Pat also had his #1 and #2 dose, and the long-term care facility process went very smoothly. No major side effects for either one of us.

The federal government continues to act in getting information out to all Americans. Vaccination sites now include pharmacies and hospitals, as well as the mass vaccination sites around the district. It was just announced that the federal government is sending 25 million masks to Community Health Centers, Soup Kitchens and Food Pantries across the nation!!
💚😇😷

I kept thinking about the memoir my Uncle Jack wrote about the period covering (1917-1927). I couldn’t remember if he’d written about the 1918 Flu Epidemic. I’ve been writing in his mother Anna’s, first-person voice with the information he’d provided. It was also during the time the US was at war with Germany and rationing food. (WWI)”

The number of deaths from the 2018 flu epidemic was estimated to be at least 50 million worldwide with about 675,000 occurring in the United States. Mortality was high in people younger than 5 years old, 20-40 years old, and 65 years and older.

Over the last year I’d stopped writing about his and my paternal grandmother’s experience because of COVID-19 brain fog and writer’s block. When I finally took the memoir out, I came across this section about their own experience with this deadly epidemic.

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“The worldwide flu epidemic killed many people and we had our own scare when Jack got very sick. We put his bed in the front room where we could keep the temperature cold by opening the windows because the doctor believed this killed the germs. We covered him with lots of blankets. The only foods he could eat were soft foods like soft-boiled eggs, ice cream, custard, jello and rice pudding. He really liked this because we rarely had these delicious foods during the rationing. I tried to keep him quiet by propping him up with pillows so he could look out the window and watch the men build the new school across the street. They tore down all the houses that were there, leaving only the foundations, and putting up the school in their place. It was going to be named Roosevelt School.

Jack’s fifth birthday went by without our celebrating it because he was so sick. When he was feeling better, we surprised him with a birthday cake. Ray, Henry and I, along with two of Jack’s aunts, walked into his room carrying the cake with lighted candles. We all sang ‘Happy Birthday to you” and rolled in the brand new red wagon that he’d always wanted.

Finally, the day came that we could close the windows in his room and heat up his room. We got him out of bed and up on his feet. We helped him stand up but he was too weak to walk. Each day I would help him out of bed and walk with him around the room. It wasn’t long before he was running all around the apartment. The day came that we all celebrated when Jack was able to go outside!! What a joy to see him pulling his red wagon up and down the street. The workmen building the school across the street asked him if he’d like to load some of the pieces of wood laying all over the construction site into his wagon, and bring it home for firewood for our stove. Jack was so proud when he wheeled the wagon into our apartment and put all the wood into our coal bin.”

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(c) Donna Ashworth
Worldometer dot com as of February 28th

Pandemic 2020 ~ December

The Gift of Vaccine

Jeffrey Sherman

When I was a kid, they rolled out a vaccine for polio. We were given it at school on a sugar cube. I went home and my dad, who was working on Mary Poppins, asked how my day was. What I didn’t know was that Julie Andrews who was hired to play Mary had not really liked the song my dad and uncle had written -“Through the Eyes of Love” – and it was rejected. It was their favorite song for the movie. Walt asked the Sherman Brothers to come up with a new song that would be in line with Mary’s //Julie’s philosophy. Dad asked me how my day was and I told him about getting the polio vaccine at school. I was known for rejecting the booster shots at my doctors’ office and running away. He said, “ Didn’t it hurt?” I told him they put it on a sugar cube and you just ate it. He stared at me, then went to the phone and called my uncle Dick. They went back to the office and wrote -“A Spoonful of Sugar” (Helps the Medicine Go Down.”) It’s my little corner of film music history I suppose. Inadvertently. For anyone I know here on FB, trust the doctors. When the vaccine for Covid comes out, get it. We are all dependent on each other in this pandemic. Trust science and doctors and epidemiologists. We are a small world and we will beat this enemy if we listen to those who know. Be safe. Wear a mask. Be kind and thoughtful and considerate to your fellow man and woman. We will beat this. xo J

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“I wasn’t nervous at all.” 90-year-old British grandma is the world’s first to receive Pfizer-BioNTech’s COVID vaccine.

First COVID Vaccine In U.S. Goes To NYC Critical Care Nurse🇺🇸
😷🧡🩺💉👏

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I was one of the lucky 16 days of giveaway winners at my apartment complex! A wonderful Spa Kit to help me get through the next two cold, winter months.

Holiday Grab Bag 2020

It turned out to be a very nice Christmas this year. My son, Jeff, came down a few days before to take me out to lunch (a first for me since COVID-19 began) and we were the only ones in the cafe. Masks and social distancing were strictly enforced and yet it was still a pleasant experience. Jeff received his first vaccine provided for the healthcare providers.

I was able to talk on the phone with my other sons and know that they are all well. Each is fortunate to have jobs that keep them secure.

The long-term care facility where Pat lives provided a wonderful Christmas lunch that was delivered to his apartment. We’re both happy to have made it this far and to have had each other to lean on.

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Lie of the Year (Yup! You guessed it!) The “award” this year goes to claims that deny, downplay or disinform about COVID-19:

https://www.politifact.com/article/2020/dec/16/lie-year-coronavirus-downplay-and-denial/?fbclid=IwAR1NALg-EHRlS3_luZYRDTFUEaEp_yvmCc–FAVvGce2GHUxdZPHbLKwTKo

Quotes of the 2020:

“One day – It’s like a miracle – It will disappear!” Trump 2/27

“Wear a Mask!” Fauci 5/21

“The science should not stand in the way of this.” McEnany 7/16

Source: Worldometer.com

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My wishes to all of you, both near and far, for a safer and healthier New Year 2021.

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Add your thoughts in comments below: American interest wanes in getting COVID-19 vaccine. Why?

Pandemic 2020 ~ November

November 2020 will surely go down in history as the most memorable during this pandemic. After grooming his followers with expectations of massive voter fraud, the president set the tone that the only way Vice President Biden could ever win would be through fraud via mail-in ballots. Meanwhile, states began preparing for a different kind of election because of COVID-19 and put in place a process of requesting ballots early and voting early. In my state alone a majority of the Virginia votes cast in this election were done through early voting to the tune of 2.7 million. From all accounts the process worked well for most states and I learned that there are already some states who have been successfully doing only mail-in voting for some time.

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The Pandemic has also changed the way we are approaching the 2020 holiday season. On going warnings from the CDC and medical professionals brought many to reconsider travel and large family gatherings for the Thanksgiving weekend. It’s expected that the next months are going to be even worse than what we experienced in the beginning. For those of us who are elderly and/or dealing with health conditions that make us more vulnerable, the best option was to avoid exposure to infection in any way. I was grateful to be able to spend Thanksgiving Day with Pat at his long-term-care facility. They served a wonderful turkey dinner and, because it was a gorgeous day, we were able to take a walk outside.

COVID-Wise Thanksgiving 2020

President-Elect Biden continues to be certified as the winner in all states at this time yet there are still steps being taken by this president to ‘steal the election’. It appears that the two main reasons that he lost the election were his disturbing performance in leading us through the pandemic and the fact that he encouraged his base not to trust the mail-in ballot process early on which might have contributed to some not voting at all. In any case, this election brought about the highest number of voters than in any other election totaling more than 155,000,000 votes. To date, Joe Biden is 7,000,000 votes ahead of Donald Trump.

Meanwhile, world-wide case of Coronavirus totaled 63,071,670 with the USA at the top of the list with 13,750,608 (according to worldometer.com). We’re told that a vaccine is coming in the next few weeks. Virginia is getting 70,000 doses which will be given to healthcare workers and the elderly living in long-term-care facilities.

I turned to watercolor paints to help me through this month and keep me distracted from all the ongoing drama in our news. I signed up for Joanne Sharpe’s Holiday Greeting online course. We had a lot of fun sharing our creations and now I’m deciding who gets which card. The next two or three winter months ahead of us are predicted to be bad so I’m looking for ways to keep the stress level down and remain lowkey through it all. Meditation, reading books, watercolor sketching and basically just keeping a calm routine are all a part of my plan. My connection to family and friends is very rewarding and the daily love and support connection over the phone with Pat keeps me going.

My Holiday Card Assortment ~ Watercolor Online Class

To My Blogger Friends here in the United States and all around the world: Be Well! Stay Safe! Happy Holiday in whatever way you celebrate!