This is the most serious world health crisis of my lifetime. It’s the first time I felt truly at risk since I am now over the age of 60. I wrestled going to work these last few days, especially yesterday. I was torn between being loyal to my employer, my co-workers and most importantly my students, and quarantining myself at home in an attempt to save my life. Even though I was concerned, I went to work, but still contemplated the idea of using half my 20 years worth of accrued sick days starting next week to hide from this potentially deadly virus. Luckily, I didn’t have to make this decision because the County Health Department shut the schools until April 20th when spring break is included.
We have provided the parents with online learning programs and a packet of materials to complete homebound instruction for 2 hours per day with follow-up communication through phone and computer. Even, though closing the school has relieved my fear of future exposures from students and staff, I’m still worried that I may have already been exposed even though there is zero evidence that anyone I was with was sick.
Even though, I feel better about not being in a smallish classroom with 9 students and 5 other adults, I’m still feeling unsettled in that my new daily routines are going to be quite different. Should I go grocery shopping or have them delivered, if possible? Should I go out to lunch to a small sandwich shop or go to church or stay home for the next 5 weeks? This is not at all like summer break when life is a bit more carefree. I don’t know what this is like because I never experienced it before.
I’m feeling some anxiety and am having some difficulty sleeping at night. It’s not because I’m thinking about anything specific, its just a systemic feeling of life as I knew it has changed and I’m experiencing a greater sense of uncertainty. This is unknown territory.
Republican, Democrat, Independent, citizen, immigrant, male, female, straight, gay, rich, poor or in the middle and anyone else not listed are in the same boat and we need to work together. Together we need to make sure we are more prepared for the next pandemic which is sure to come. The greatest and smartest country in the world needs to lead in preparedness. We need competent leadership and not someone who makes it up as he goes along wasting valuable time. A successful president needs to surround him/herself with experts and then be quiet only speaking to reassure Americans that we are doing everything in our power to protect us all.