My Covid19 Post

This isn’t going to be a post about statistics. I’m not going to share instructions on how to properly wash your hands. I have no infographics showing the benefits of social distancing. I just need a space. A space to put all my feelings, emotions, thoughts, and concerns. So here it is.

Mad – I’m upset. My birthday is this weekend and my 3 best friends from college were supposed to come into town. I had a 5 page agenda. We had been planning this for months. The show we had tickets to, cancelled. The massages and pedicures we had lined up, not going. Every restaurant and bar on my list, no longer offering dine-in options. My parents might not even drive in one hour for a birthday dinner. Needless to say, I’m bummed. (See Guilt for follow up.)

Sad – My heart breaks for others. The elderly who are without visitors in their nursing homes. The children who are without meals now that schools are cancelled. Families who saved up for their first trip to Disney. Those who have increased fear, anxiety, or panic over the unknown. College students who are missing out on final recitals, weekends out, or their last semester with their best friends.

Guilt – I feel bad. I feel bad that I’m upset. Yes, I’m basically cancelling my 25th birthday, but I’m not confined to my home. I’m not working overtime at a 1:9 ICU patient ratio. I’m not sick. I’m merely inconvenienced. Guilt part two is nursing guilt. Should I be picking up more shifts? Working 16s? Overtime? But at the same time, I need to protect myself and make sure I’m mentally and physically ready to work when I’m scheduled. Enter more selfishness? It’s been a cyclical thing, really.

Not Worried – Generally speaking, I’m not worried. I trust the information from the CDC and WHO. I’m not worried that this is going to be an apocalyptic scenario. I believe myself to be education on the differences between China, Italy, and the US. I listen to warnings and have been following temporary lifestyle change suggestions. I have faith in my coworkers, the most resiliant batch of nurses and nursing assistants I’ve ever worked with.

Worried – Sometimes I’m worried that I’m not worried. These moments of worry lead me to participate in some of the more panicked events such as stocking up on frozen and non-perishable groceries and deep cleaning my apartment. I’m a source of information and advice for my friends and family and while I try to give them optimistic insight and accurate statistics, I worry that I’m instilling false hope or making empty promises. Because in reality, I don’t know. No one knows. I keep saying that these next few days to weeks will be telling, but that’s a generic statement that could provide comfort or heighten fear. I’m doing my best to remain calm and supportive, but ultimately I’m right there with them.

So with all of that, I have come up with a few mantras to get me through the next few weeks (lightly inspired by Frozen II because, let’s be honest, it being digitally released 3 months early is what we NEEDED in this time).

You feel what you feel, and those feelings are real. – Sven

When one can see no future, all one can do is the next right thing. – Grand Pabbie

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