“Grief must be witnessed,” said Kessler, the grief expert. “We want to know our loved ones’ life and death mattered. We want our family and friends to witness it, our community and we need our country to witness it. And it’s not happening on any level.” -David Kessler (LA Times)
Do you choose to turn away from the suffering and the over 90,000 deaths from coronavirus in this country? The flags are lowered in the US capitol this weekend to honor all those deaths. One of the dead is my younger brother John Barry. I try to tell myself those flags are lowered for him too. I am not able to view his body or have a funeral service because of the pandemic. I was able to see him on skype right before and up to his death. If this is the new normal, I want none of it. I want to have some kind of memorial for my brother in the future when his family can gather safely. I want there to be some kind of permanent memorial for him. I want the world to know he mattered.
Stream of Consciousness Saturday, #SOCS, is hosted by Linda G Hill
Quote from article in LA Times, Little sense of shared grief as virus deaths near 100,000 by Noah Bierman and Eli Stokols
“There are some griefs so loud/They could bring down the sky/And there are griefs so still/None knows how deep they lie.” ~ May Sarton
My brother John died suddenly May 19, 2020 just when we thought he had overcome the coronavirus. I was with him on Skype when he died. I am comforted that he was not not alone and was not in pain.
I want to go back to the old normal. I know that probably is not possible. Will we be on ‘stay at home’ status for 3 more months? Hopefully, it will be phased out slowly over these next few months. In LA County we are supposed to wear masks when outside if any chance of contact with another human. I have been wearing a mask when I open the door for my grocery delivery. I don’t have to open the door unless I have ordered wine, then I need to show my ID. Most times the delivery person tells me not to worry about it. The delivery people have masks on as well. We can get deliveries from Costco which means TP and just recently, paper towels. Yay!
My brother is recovering from coronavirus. He was lucky to have a milder case. But it is still not back to normal at the Nursing Home and I worry he is not getting enough support. They are moving residents around like musical chairs because their numbers of positive test results are still rising. They are working to separate those residents with positive test results from those who are negative. More staff have tested positive as well. My brother is now out of isolation but not back in his old room and the Wi-fi is not good where he is. The social workers have been trying to help us. One of them visited my brother today. They had only one Skype visit while he was in isolation because of the poor internet connections in the facility. They really have to work on that. There is one iPad and one portable phone for the residents in his section. They have a waiting list for the iPad and I have been told the connection for it is not so great either.
In the old normal I would be able to visit him in person. I would have easier access to talk with him on the phone.
Stream of Consciousness Saturday, #SOCS, is hosted by Linda G Hill. The prompt word is “want.” Make the word “want” the first, second, or third word of your post.
Featured image ‘Water Lily in Bloom’ via National Park Service Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens
“In the midst of winter, I finally learned that there was in me an invincible summer.”-Albert Camus
‘Los Angeles County’s stay-at-home orders will “with all certainty” be extended for the next three months, county Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer…’ This to be gradually relaxed under a five-step plan. (May 12, 2020 L A Times)
I question my ability to endure this but tell myself ‘one day at a time.’
One Liner Wednesday, #1linerWeds, is hosted by Linda G Hill.
Featured image, ‘Summer Field New England’ by Larry White on Pixabay.com
Quote from everydaypower.com
Governor Newsom announced that we will start to re-open some businesses in California which began this past Friday. This is the start of a 4 phase plan. We may not get fully open until August or September. We are starting because we have had a steady decline in weekly deaths. Doesn’t that sound terrible to say, weekly death rate. I don’t feel like running out to public places just yet. I don’t mind walking around the neighborhood. It will take time to feel comfortable again. Those who are older are advised to stay at home for now, ( I think I am in that category). When we do go out we will have to continue distancing and wear masks. I think we will not feel anywhere close to normal until next year. I hope we will get back to normal by then. Don’t know when my brother’s Nursing Home will re-open to visitors. It will take a while for those affected to recover and be clear of infection and they don’t want anyone to reintroduce anything to the facility. I just want my brother to continue to get better and hope to be able to visit and take him outside in the future.
There are still parts of the US that are in the throws of the epidemic and the numbers of people lost are predicted to climb in the country as a whole. There are still many people who are sick and families worried about them.
I have spoken with my brother via Skype pretty much every day. Some days the connection is pretty good. Today his audio was bad again but he could hear me. He is feeling better but still weak and gets tired easily. His appetite is low but he is doing better eating. There has been an increase in positive cases at his Nursing Home. He says his CNAs ( Certified Nursing Assistants), recently, are people he has known for many years. I think it makes him feel good that they are taking care of him. He says everyone has been nice.
I will see my son, my daughter-in-law, and little grandson for Mother’s Day out on our front patio. Even though it probably sounds sad, we love seeing them even at a distance.
What Day Is It Anyway? , #WDIIA, is hosted by Linda G Hill. I still have trouble keeping track of what day it is.
Featured image of painting, ‘ By The Open Door’ by Nicolai Astrup via Wikimedia.org
We have been on ‘stay at home’ status for how long? Time feels lost in another dimension. I don’t feel like I have been stuck in a cave, because I can go out in my yard or around the neighborhood without fear. And I don’t think our Governor or health officials should cave in on their rules for re-opening our state.
California starts to open up. Now we have to decide when we feel comfortable going back into society. We can now go out for curbside pick up at more businesses, and lower risk workplaces can re-open. Los Angeles County does have the highest number of cases in the state. Closer to home we received an email from one of our local stores telling us one of their employees tested positive for coronavirus. Just in case we get lulled into a sense of false security, it is still out there. Dr. Barbara Ferrer ,the LA County Public Health Director, says ‘expect to see more cases as we open up.’ it is still out there.
To the protestors who do not want to follow any precautions in places that still have outbreaks I say, ” Do you live in a cave? Are you not watching the news about all the people dying, ( and not all are elderly with pre-existing conditions). Have you not seen the Nurses and Doctors and other healthcare workers on the news talking about the hell it is in their communities and hospitals? ”
I can tell you from personal experience that Nursing Homes are still being impacted right now. My brother resides in one and has contracted the virus. He has been holding his own. Communication with him has been difficult. We can talk by the facility portable phone for short periods and he has Skype on his computer but the wi-fi has been spotty. The Nursing Home has started to get a good system going for scheduling communication with family now.
We are advised not to get together with our families for Mother’s Day. We will all celebrate together when this is over.
For a little help relaxing from Santa Barbara Botanic Garden on You Tube:
Stream of Consciousness Saturday, #SOCS, is hosted by Linda G Hill. The prompt word for today is ‘cave,’ use it as a noun or verb.
Featured image ‘Joshua Tree National Park’ photo by Christopher Michel on Wikimedia.org
I skyped with my brother, who resides in a Nursing Home, on Saturday and Sunday. It was good to be able to see him. We have to work on hearing him though. For some reason there is a lot of static from his end. I am going to work on getting that fixed because it is crazy I can hardly hear him. On the positive side he seems to be holding his own. Just let this continue and let him recover.
What Day Is It Anyway? #WDIIA, is hosted by Linda G Hill.
Music video of Marvin Gaye provided by Universal Music Group on You Tube