From my childhood on, I have been taught about the power of words. The ditty went “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me.” This made perfect sense back then; however, today we know that long after our bones heal, mean, nasty words hurt us and have a devastating effect.
I think I’m going to fare poorly when it comes time to fully return to a post COVID-19 world. I’ve been faithfully wearing my masks and gloves and staying home, using the bank and pharmacy drive thru, and staying away from people in the grocery store. I haven’t been shopping since March 15, and I canceled all deliveries, repairs, cable and telephone upgrades. When I say I have been sheltering at home since March 15, I mean it, and I intend to continue.
Over the past year, Roger and I have had lots of chances to see nurses in action. I was hospitalized for the first time in 15 years and he was hospitalized twice and each time we were blessed with wonderful nurses and assistants who were careful, safety-minded, responsive, kind, and patient. Each time their non-anxious presence was calming, and we wondered if they ever went home because they always seemed to be around. Their concern for our well being made being sick not so bad.
This week’s recognition of nurses is well deserved. During this COVID-19 crises we have heard about the shortage of nurses, their working conditions, dedication, family sacrifices, and the risks they’ve taken to care for their patients, often putting themselves at the bottom of the list. Their long shifts, increasing patient load, added risk of caring for sick and dying patients, all should help us remember and appreciate these unsung heroes and heroines in the days ahead. I pray as things reopen and settle down, we remember to recognize and celebrate these important medical professionals.
I read this message on a bumper I was probably too close to the other day and I smiled. May is National Teachers Appreciation Month so if you’re looking for an opportunity to say thanks, this is it. After parents and grandparents spent the past month helping with teaching and homework for home bound students, I suspect there will be extra thanks swirling around our teachers, principals and other school personnel.
I’ve probably enjoyed staying home a little too much over the past 35 or 40 days. I have my trusty laptop, food, books, and more work than I know what to do with, so I’m set for another two months at least. Yes, I miss seeing my barber, going out to eat, to the movies and library, wandering around aimlessly at the mall— “normal” stuff this pandemic prevented.
So far I haven’t suffered any fever—real or cabin—and though I have Zoomed until I literally fell out, I love my commute of 50 steps and no traffic, my casual business attire—t-shirt and cutoffs, and trips to the bank drive-thru and the pharmacy. My tank of gas is the same one I had last month.
This new mindset took adjustment but now that I have a new “normal,” I like it. I’ve decided not to go back to the “bad ole days,” and I pray you, too, will discover a new improved dailiness.
During stressful times, keep calm, carry on
You’ve probably heard the phrase “perfect storm,” and after all we’ve been through in the past 45 days, I think I know what one looks and feels like. I am blessed that I have a home to shelter in place. I slept through tornadoes in Nashville last months and severe storms Sunday without an inkling a storm raged outside. I can work from home and I’ve had e-church the past three Sundays because we can’t congregate.
If the Coronavirus/Covid19 has taught me anything, it’s to not put stuff off. This is not the first time I’ve broached this subject with you and it probably won’t be the last, yet many of us are still figuring we have a million tomorrows. Trust me, friends, we don’t.
Growing up in the 60s and early 70s, I was sure that I was abused as a child. I got whippings and there was always the threat of getting another one if I were “hardheaded,” stubborn, or displayed my “ugly ways.” One of the last whippings I got came the month after my 16th birthday.
My mother told me to do something I obviously didn’t want to do, and she said I “sole up,” code for bad attitude coupled with eye rolling. It was New Year’s Day and she beat me right there, fair and square, in the middle of the kitchen floor as she had promised to do whenever one of those attitudinal episodes presented themselves.
As our world continues to be rocked by the Coronavirus-Covid19 pandemic, let’s look at what we know and where we are. I’m on my 11th day inside my home and the authorities were correct—I am safer. I intend to stay there until somebody drags me out kicking and screaming. So long as there is milk, Cheerios, ground beef, chicken, onions, and potatoes in the cupboard and freezer, I may be here indefinitely.
Conquering fear is a full-time job
When President Franklin Delano Roosevelt said, “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself,” his words were meant to reassure us that everything would be all right, and we should not succumb to our fears. My friends, I don’t know about you, but I’m not nearly as afraid of the Coronavirus/Covid19 as I am of the news reports, uncertainty, and the unknown.