I wish to send my love and gratitude to some modern day heroes. Anyone who works at a hospital, whether your sweeping floors and emptying bins or ventilating patients or delivering babies. Anyone who works at laboratories tirelessly working to create a vaccine. Anyone caregiving to those who are less fortunate physically and need help day to day. Anyone who is stocking shelves, working the check-out lane and delivering essential food and products. To anyone keeping our medical supplies dispensed. Anyone who works at a retirement home, doing their best to keep our elders healthy and safe. Your devotion isn’t going unnoticed and we as a country appreciate you deeply.
These modest day to day hero’s on the front line, are risking their lives and the lives of their families to help mankind.
I described in previous blogs how the greatest victories are won not by knights in shining armour in dramatic battles with dragons, but by regular, weak humans living in the darkest times, facing monsters that would make even the stoutest heroes cower and run in fear.
This terrifying beast, COVID-19, has shook the world and even the mere mention of it’s name instills a vast range of emotions; fear, anxiety, impatience, hopelessness, anger to name but afew which hit simultaneously and frequently. My spinal cord injury has left me with a thirty percent lung function due to paralyzed chest muscles among other things. Weakened neck mucles mean my ability to cough is weak/absent. This can be a problem as I am not able to easily clear mucous out of my throat or lungs creating a warm,cozy environment for covid to live.
When you are constantly reminded by doctors, society, and even your own body that you are at a physical disadvantage, this can take its toll on your thoughts.
As someone who is classified as high risk with Covid-19, I’m being advised to cocoon myself indoors for 12 weeks to protect myself from the detrimental virus. But how much social distancing is actually possible for someone like me who needs help with various aspects of daily life? I work with caregivers who must interact with other clients constantly. Caregivers who may have partners who prehaps are still working; perhaps on the front line in hospitals or retail? But I am blessed I live in a country that takes such good care of those with disabilities. I have heard about situations in Japn for example where lists were created that deprioritised care for certain groups of people, including those with disabilities.
Living in a residenal setting is a major reason also to be on edge and I find myself in a daze during the day, as the days slowly drag on. There are now 22 cluster cases of the coronavirus in nursing homes nationwide and the fear is if one gets it do all have an increased chance of contracting the virus? Do residental homes (aka products of deeply entrenched social stigma where bodies that don’t fit a cultural “norm” are marginalized) possess the same risk factors as nursing homes with groups of physically vulnerable groups of people live in extremely close proximity? Does this residental setting introduce more risk to me? Am I going to get infected? My body has up until now exceeded even my own expectations and my belief system is getting a reality check, as I recognize how truly dynamic human bodies can be.
I remind myself I’ve faught too hard for the life that I have. I’ve worked too hard for all of my efforts to be brushed of as a casualty of a crisis. Thus I put this information to the back of my mind and power on cycling my day between cardio, weight training, sketching, listening to podcasts, cleaning, eating healthy and so on.
In one of my earliest blogs I described life as a storm. Up until now living mostly in the quiet tranquil eye of the storm but Covid-19 has thrust us all into a turbulent hurricane. I described the inability of hiding from the inevitable blizzards that life throws at us; unable to outrun them or defeat them. You must simply put your head down, grit your teeth and weather the storm that has thrown us off our once clearer path in life. Now we must simply outlast the beast (if we can) by clinging stubbornly to our spot’s and from somewhere deep within finding the strength and courage to keep going and know that the storm will eventually pass; The sound of our defiant roars are lost in the whirlwinds that engulf us, our storm shelters quiver and buckle with every blow this Covid beast throws at us.