Pandemic 2020 ~ May, June and July

I decided to combine May, June and July because of ‘brain fog’ and also I wanted to catch up to the present month of August. It’s easier to journal as it’s happening than to attempt to go back and recall these surreal events over the last five months.

School Bus COVID19 View from my Window

One by one school systems made the decision to close all schools. It was surreal because Spring was arriving and if we didn’t have the news reporting the pandemic we wouldn’t know that the threat was there.

Here in my apartment complex the county school bus would stop by around 11 a.m. and drop off school lunches for the children. The first nice Spring day that I sat outside in the patio there was a lot going on with cars pulling up to the school bus and the sound of the driver greeting those who came to get theirs.  There was a little girl running up and down the bank of the running creek, calling out to her mother.  The decision was made that by delivering the school lunches, the children would have a feeling of connection to their school while classes weren’t in session. At the present time, in August, there are plans to continue this program.

On May 25th the world witnessed a video of George Floyd being slowly killed by one of our civil servants in law enforcement.  Millions of people took to the streets in peaceful protest all over the world. My family members among them.  The message was clear. There needed to be reform that addressed the ongoing brutality by some in law enforcement that crossed over the line.  The call for reform concerned the lack of swift action on the part of law enforcement to bring accountability to the offenders within their ranks.   This message began to get lost when radical left and right took advantage of this and provoked violent confrontations.

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By May 27th, the Worldometer recorded cases in the US that were growing at an alarming rate:

May 27 Worldometer

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I was attempting to find ways to take my mind off of what was unfolding day after day. So many unknowns. So much confusion of facts. The president continued to minimize what we were hearing from the medical professionals. the States that were the epicenter of the pandemics surges were met with criticism and partisan resistance to needed federal action. He blamed everyone but himself.  It was exhausting and infuriating to watch his briefings.

Trump Who's Fault

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For most of May I enjoyed participating in an Audubon Webinar on Drawing Birds. Most of my time was spent watching birds coming into my bird feeder and they brought me a lot of joy. It was a wonderful distraction to see the sketches of the other artists and share my attempts on artist Facebook Pages.

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By the end of June it was obvious we weren’t mitigating the spread of the virus here in the US:

When business shut down and we weren’t able to get a hair cut, I decided I was going to let my hair grow for as long as COVID-19 kept us staying home. I had long hair when I was young and my grandmother wore her hair pulled back in a twist when she was older.  Being I’m not going anywhere, what do I have to lose and I’m saving the price of a hair cut.

Just as I had predicted, the fashion industry jumped on board and began marketing all different styles of masks. We were learning just which masks provided the best protection. I finally gave in and ordered two masks from AmazonPrime. It was looking more and more like we were going to be dealing with this virus for a long time. There was a growing anti-mask rebellion by those who were listening to the president and the conspiracy theories. Dr. Anthony Fauci continued to be the Voice of Reason for those who looked to science and the medical profession for the clearest advice and guidance.

Mask COVID-19 August

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By the end of July, Worldometer continued to record ever-increasing numbers of positive cases and deaths around the world:

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Every day Pat and I talk with each other. I’ve come to love (and need) this connection with him. I’d love to be with him and he keeps asking me when I’ll be able to come for a visit. It’s been over five months since I’ve been with him and the information coming from the Virginia Health Department isn’t very reassuring. I wouldn’t be able to forgive myself if I carried the virus with me into his Independent Living/Assisted Living facility. We are both strong and offer each other a comforting and supportive love. His birthday was in July and I look forward to the day when I can have him over for a nice birthday steak dinner and raise a glass of wine to another year. ❤

Pat's Birthday 86 #1

To read Pandemic 2020 ~ March

To read  Pandemic 2020 ~ April

Pandemic 2020 ~ April

The World is Temporarily Closed

The World

By the end of March, there were 336,075 Coronavirus cases in the world and 14,613 deaths. The US held daily briefings from each State’s governor and the White House. It was stressed over and over again by  WHO and the CDC not to touch our faces because the virus enters through the nose and mouth. Throughout the whole month there was a stampede to stores that wiped out the supply of Toilet Paper. The warnings were more aimed at people in my age group, especially those who had underlying conditions like cardiovascular disease, respiratory conditions and diabetes. Saint Patrick’s Day events were cancelled, foreign travel was stopped and businesses began to close. Hospitals were running out of supplies for handling the increase in cases. It was becoming clear that this virus didn’t respect borders and the only thing that would contain the spread is if we follow clear guidelines set down by the CDC and WHO.

The White House briefing became exhausting when the president resorted to blaming and politicizing. His narrative about the threat of the virus conflicted drastically with other credible sources.  I continued to watch mainly for the sound advice from Dr. Anthony Fauci who was becoming our national medical leader and because I wanted to hear for myself what the president was saying so it couldn’t be dismissed as ‘fake news’. The president opined that this would all be gone by Easter ~ a miracle. Wouldn’t that be nice!

 

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Mostly I stayed with our governor here in Virginia, a physician who gave intelligent, sound guidance. I also followed the New Jersey and New York governors because I had family there and those two states were the epicenter on the east coast.

We got to see who the Stand-Up Wonders were and who the Gutless Wonders were.

By April 6th, the Worldometer website listed 1,343,107 total cases worldwide and 74,657 deaths worldwide. Here in the US our total cases were at 364,590 and total deaths at 10,841.

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Worldometer

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My reflection on COVID19 that I sketched on Good Friday. My heart and prayers go out to all those who are vulnerable at this time. 💚 (I feel like coronavirus is raining down on us.)

Pandemic and me Good Friday

“My eyes replaced the virus raining down on me with a beam of holy white light from the heavens. I moved all the virus to the outside of that beam thereby placing me in total protection.)

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By April 13th, on the day after Easter, the worldwide cases were up to 1,922,267 and deaths at 119,547. The US numbers had climbed to 585,469 total cases and 23,592 total deaths. Clearly, the president’s confidence that it would be gone by Easter, a miracle, didn’t happen.

People were told to stay home and celebrate the holiday virtually through the online services.The guidelines for Stay at Home were increasing and including everyone. Stay at Home unless absolutely necessary and, if necessary, wear a mask and practice social distancing of six feet distance from others.

Stay Calm/Mask Up

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Worldometer.jpg #1

Worldometer Report April 13th, 2020

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Homemade masks became the new craft as many took to their sewing machines or learned how to use fabrics to fold and use as masks. I used cloth Christmas napkins and following a video on how to fold for maximum protection.

Mask COVID19#2ab3resize

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My primary care nurse practitioner did a telehealth visit over the phone instead of my having to go to her office. It did turn out that I needed to go to the office anyway so that they could have blood drawn. I was the first patient to visit the make-shift tent that they had set up for ‘healthy’ patients so that the office waiting rooms could be for sick patients only. The LPN that drew the blood was very nervous and the fact that the wind was blowing around us made it more difficult for her. She finally got a full vial and the final results were all okay!

COVID19 Blood Lab

During this buildup, Pat and I spoke every day. I found it very comforting to listen to his voice and know that he was handling this sudden, abrupt change in our lives with acceptance. There wasn’t much news to share except for the day to day updates on the steadily growing numbers of positive cases. The assisted living/independent living facility had no additional cases. This was a relief considering we were hearing of multiple deaths in other nursing homes and long-term care homes.

At the end of April, there were almost 3,000,000 cases worldwide and 1,000,00 US cases. Deaths in the US were reaching the 50,000 mark.

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Image may contain: text that says 'Now Yesterday All America Country, Other Europe Total Cases Asia Searc South America New Cases Africa World Total Deaths Oceania New Deaths 818, 176 USA +95 007 Total Recovered 196, 575 916,348 Spain 658 +29,906 779 766 51,742 219,764 italy +1,508 +6,740 22,524 93,275 192,994 France 159 828 92,355 Germany +1,645 22,245 154,545 60,498 UK +389 +1,416 5,723 43,493 143,464 Turkey +5,386 19,506 06,800 104,912 Iran +3,122 2,600 N/A 88,194 China +109 +1,168 5,574 21,737 82,804 +6 4,632 66,599 77,257'

(Worldometer Report April 24th, 2020)

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Protests were beginning in some of the States that had stricter restrictions because of the density and contagion in the hot spots around the country. Some resented the ongoing restrictions and considered them to be an infringement of their civil rights.  The president seemed to be enabling this behavior which included armed protests that threatened the capitol buildings of some states. His comments and tweets egged them on when the governors of those States were democrats. The politicizing of this crisis by him was increasingly called out.

Our governor continued to brief us with science and facts. There was no politicizing going on while each of the people on his staff reported their findings. We were able to flatten the curve and avoid the anticipated surge. Our hospitals weren’t overwhelmed and were able to prepare for that possibility down the road.

I was very fortunate to have to nearby delivery services to rely on for food and supplies. My niece checked in on me to see if I needed prescriptions picked up or if there was anything else that I needed. My sons checked in to see how I was doing.

Jessie COVID 19 2020

 

 

* You can read Pandemic 2020 ~ March here: Pandemic 2020 ~ March