I’m feeling a bit obsessive these days. Everything from drying out my skin with sanitizer to carefully watching how often I touch my face. ( I have wild eyebrows that require constant calming.)
Yesterday, against my better judgement, I took the light rail into Pioneer Square for a scheduled haircut. I wore gloves. I guarded the space next to me. I sized up everyone walking onto the train at multiple stops. I found myself reaching conclusions and making judgements on my 40 minute ride into town. This kind of activity exposes me to the world, and it exposes some of my deepest prejudice and fear.
As I read the news I realize I am mostly concerned for populations that I rarely engage with: poor children, who are relying on school lunches to get a decent meal in their little bellies ( I already donated to a Go Fund Me page to help tend to those slipping between the cracks). And unsheltered people who don’t have the luxury of available places to sleep or rest or use the bathroom, let alone wash their hands.
The “vulnerable” we call them. Indeed. They were that before this coronavirus ever showed it’s first symptom. They were at risk months – years ago, and we turned our backs. Suddenly we can no longer hide from our mistakes. In fact, those mistakes are about to multiply in ways we can’t imagine.
I watched (believe it or not) the president address the nation last night trying to put people’s fear to rest. This was supposed to calm a nation on the verge of panic. It didn’t happen. What we got instead was 9 and a half minutes of a confused and uninformed message of the way a pandemic happens and a fantasy perspective of our economy. “Trump-speak”. We have long stopped believing that we are being led by someone even remotely qualified for the job. His flippant attitude will cost lives. We are on our own. If you are waiting for a bunch of marginal politicians to make the decisions that should be in the hands of health professionals, you are wildly deluded.
I am listening to the sensible advice of those leading professionals in the health field. I wash my hands, I will limit my social interaction and I will stay away from my vulnerable friends and family at even the hint of sickness. We can share a lot of things, but this isn’t one of them.
I spent the morning in a semi-private yoga class away from the crowds of a gym. (Thank you, Andrea!) I walked the dog in the open air of my own neighborhood beneath the billowy clouds. I spent the afternoon with these two loves, because when I crave connection they are never far away. I’ll write more letters, clean and cut more lettuce. I’ll tackle the pile of crap that belongs on ebay (will anyone be buying and selling right now ?) and I will look for ways to help out anyone less fortunate, less privileged, than I am.
We help each other. Not only because we can, but because it is the right thing to do. Onward through the fog we all go …
Stay safe, my friends.