Coronavirus II - The Reckoning

Matthew74

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I'm wondering if anyone else feels the way I do about this, and what you are doing to cope. Background: SSI stopped my disability payments because I was working, and told me I owed them $10,000 in overpayments. I got laid off because of COVID. I haven't received any unemployment payments. IDK how I'm going to get another job. I can't do the things I normally do to cope when I'm stressed/depressed because everything is shut down, including the beach. I've been physically alone for about a month now. I can't see my mother because she's more or less under house arrest at her retirement community. IDK if I can even see a therapist in person.

My point: I'm really angry about the shutdown - not the virus, the shutdown.

I understand it's a serious concern. I understand fear, reasonable precautions, etc. I do not wish to be insensitive to people who are scared. It's real, and it's painful. I'm sure that many of you are concerned. Seeing everyone in the store with fear in their eyes freaks ME out.

That said, it still burns me up because of all I have had to deal with in my life. To me, Coronavirus is a minor concern. Yeah, ok I could theoretically get sick and die, but getting killed because some driver rear ends me on my bike is a lot less theoretical. I HAVE been hit. I've gone around in public terrified of having seizures. If I have a seizure while riding my bike, I get off, seize, get up, and get back on. I'm having seizures, I go to the store. I'm having seizures, I go to work. I get only 1 to 2 hours of sleep because of insominia, I go to work. I can't walk because of my back pain, I call a cab and go have surgery at the hospital. My father dies becuase of a chronic illness, I live. I get on with things because I just don't have any choice. I didn't stop living, and that's the way it works. That's what you're supposed to do.

You have to live your life no matter what. There is no alternative. You do the best you can to manage things, not overdo it, etc. - but sooner or later you just have to do the best you can. I think that's what people are missing in the whole shutdown. The virus is here to stay, it's not going away. You can't hide from a virus. Sooner or later you are at risk. It may be tommorow or next year. That's life. It's not fun, but it's not going way. I think that many people haven't learned that lesson when it comes to their health, because they haven't had the opportunity. The cost of the lockdown for people with chronic illnesses is much higher because we are first to loose our jobs, can't pay our bills, and so on. We are much more likely to get really sick if we get the virus, and to feel it more acutely if we are afraid, but we pay a higher price for for the isolation and economic cost.

I do think that there is some good to come out of it, but most of it doesn't help right now.
 

Nakamova

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The cost of the lockdown for people with chronic illnesses is much higher because we are first to lose our jobs, can't pay our bills, and so on. We are much more likely to get really sick if we get the virus, and to feel it more acutely if we are afraid, but we pay a higher price for for the isolation and economic cost.
You're absolutely right -- folks who are already sick and stressed are extra-vulnerable both to the virus and to the shutdown. Same goes for minorities, people who are already at or below the poverty line, people who live in polluted areas, folks with limited access to adequate food and health services, etc. There's a lot of suffering going around, and it's lose-lose for an enormous number of people.

That said, even though the shutdown sucks individually, it makes sense collectively (for now). It's not whether you get sick, or I get sick, it's how many people we will go on to infect. Not much is certain with COVID-19 but what IS known is that limiting public interaction = minimizing severe and fatal COVID cases = avoiding catastrophic strain on health services. The shutdown isn't the right answer, but it's the less-wrong answer.

As for how to cope? If you can, avoid things and thoughts that make you feel helpless, and look for activities that allow you to exert a degree of control. I recommend strengthening existing connections and building new ones. You can't visit with friends and family in person, but you can talk on the phone, write letters and postcards, email, and/or video-chat, depending on the tech-savvy of everyone involved. Find out if you can do a teleconference with a therapist -- it won't replace an in-person visit, but it can still help. Contact your local government to see what resources they might have to help during the virus and after the shutdown is lifted. Leave notes for your neighbors -- it could be a simple note wishing them well, or you could even ask for a reply.

Since you don't have access to your normal coping activities, consider giving other ones a shot. Can't go to the beach? Wear your bathing suit at home and do "air-swimming" while listening to ocean sounds or your favorite relaxing music. Put on a mask and walk around the block. Mini-meditate for 5 minutes.

I'm sure others will have better suggestions, but I hope these ideas can help in some way.
 

Army Vet

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Hi Matthew,

I kinda feel the same as you. After being overseas, I have already had that talk with myself, "Hey, I could die here [overseas] and never come back alive!" 😨

I think that's been one of the biggest problems people have had with this virus. Coming to the realization that, wow... I "could" die from this and I’m not even 40 yet! How can this be?! I'm supposed to be AT LEAST 70 before I even think of dying and even then it shouldn't happen!!

Sounds like I’m joking, but I’m serious. Most people never [want to] think about when/how they will die because there are too many factors and they also (more importantly) don't want to accept it. Sorry to snap you people out of your utopian world, but it's not a matter of if, but WHEN you die.

It's like good ol' Momma Gump said in Forrest Gump,

"Death is just a part of life."
"Life is a box of chocolates, Forrest. You never know what you're gonna get." (as she's lying in bed, dying of cancer)

Point being, we all die and we don't know what's going to cause it.

Like you said, we've gotta live our lives no matter the situation. Does that mean we shouldn't be responsible with what we do (ie smoke, eat fast food, not exercise, not wash our hands, drive a car 100 mph etc)? No! However, people need to put their big boy/girl pants on and not be afraid of death (as harsh as that may sound).

I heard this morning (and earlier last week) that they have gone from 2.2 MILLION estimated deaths to about 60,000. Is 60,000 a bad number? Of course! Anything someone dies from is not good. Was it worth shutting down everything for 330+ million people and forcing them to panic? No! I'd say they hurt MORE people both financially AND medically (FWIW, 60,000 out of 330 million is 0.01818 PERCENT; call it two 100 hundreds of one percent). People thought "the sky is falling!" That's where I said before that the "cure" is a lot worse than the virus itself.

They're talking about social distancing being the cause of the number of deaths being smaller than the "experts" 🙄 anticipated. Sorry. Not buying it. EVERYONE has to get their food somewhere. Where do we go? The grocery store. This also includes people that get their groceries delivered. How many people have handled that food before it reached your mouth? They had to grow/produce it. Had to inspect it. Had to package it. Had to deliver it. Had to bring it in and stock the shelves. Once it gets to the shelves, people have been near it and touched it, fell to the floor (possibly) etc. Then the cashier touches it (along with the conveyor belt). Then the bagger touched it. Oh yeah, and it has been in your cart which many other people have touched. FINALLY it makes it to your car where you get home with it and unload it.

Point being, I think if this was as deadly as they claimed it to be, we would've had a lot more deaths than expected based on going to the grocery stores alone (after all, people gotta eat and get their food!) Also, there are rumors that this may have been here since November/December. My theory is that people were scared to death (no pun intended) of the "unknown" (and that they may die; therefore, what do we have to do in order to not die?!?!) and therefore people freaked out and handed their rights to the government like they were nothing. The government took over and it has all been downhill from there.
 

Matthew74

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@Army Vet You are right about fear of death. (I may be dense, but I didn’t quite make the “chocolates“ connection with death or bad things- which is about half the movie.) It’s the fear part that really concerns me. We’re basically frozen. I’ve been really stunned that it’s happened.
 

Matthew74

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My favorite part of Forrest Gump is his run across America (more than once). It reminded me of how it feels to be alone in the wilderness, where the world is so much more real, for lack of a better term. I just hope everyone gets over the shock and comes out of hiding better than we were. I don’t know what I’ll do if people take to hiding their faces permanently, like in some sci-fi movie.
 

Army Vet

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@Matthew74 The whole movie is excellent (hence the awards 😂). As for my "favorite" part, it's hard to say due to my previous statement. However, I'll say one thing that it did for me. It actually helped me (mentally) get through basic training.

The part where he is in basic training and the Drill Sergeant asked him what his sole purpose was in this army?! "To do whatever you tell me Drill Sergeant!" And the Drill Sergeant tells him that's the best darn answer he'd ever heard. Also when he put his weapon together very fast. The Drill Sergeant ran back to him and asked, "Why did you put your weapon together so quickly Gump?!"

"...because you told me to Drill Sergeant..."

I played that clip in my head I don't know how many times 😂

And that's how it is in basic. Not a matter of why, but a matter of just doing it. Don't you DARE ask why! Between having a dad as a green beret and having been taught to obey orders in general, I got through basic training without the Drill Sergeants knowing my name too well (which is what you want 😂). The only time my name was called was during roll call and mail call.
 

Fedup

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I know what you mean, I have had that talk as well where I said "I could die and never come back from it" but do you know what is funny you can never cheat the inevitable and never come back from it but I still do not want my mother, my siblings or even my friends to die but my neighbour
or someone I do not know does not count right. I can infect them?

Age does not matter, you could be 40 or like me the wrong side of 50 or even 3 years of age. A man of 101 left hospital after having a bout of it and surviving it, unfortunately I myself know of a neighbour who died aged 23 or my brother-in-law aged 58 who died Sunday. The average age of people who have died are anywhere from 20 to 84 the youngest to die was 3 years of age. Can you guess why the child died?? Well his Aunt thought this lockdown was a wast of time and did not apply to her, she had much the same Idea as you about the grocery's so she went to see her niece, it turns out she is a carrier, it does not make her sick, she just passes it on to people, this was found out after she was tested for the virus. They found out because they could not see how a healthy child, at home, away from everybody could have the symptoms so everybody got tested so it came down to the Aunt. Sounds far fetched like its out of a film but NO it has actually happened. I would imagine anger does not come close to the feeling for that Aunt right now

Sorry to burst your bubble or as you say "your utopian world" but I do not know if it is a question of when you die but more a question of "I COULD DIE FROM THIS IF I CATCH IT more a question of WHO ELSE CAN I KILL" so if I do not take this seriously and follow a few rules that are just not for my safety but others as well the best that could happen is I could die or I can be responsible for others getting extremly sick and maybe dying.

But then again I could die from a car hitting me, but I do not want to be the one driving the car which kills somebody else. I do not mind dying but I do not want to die knowing I am responsible for somebody else dying.

We gotta live our lives irrespective of the situation and who knows what we are going to face during our life time but I did smoke, never liked fast food, could not be bothered exercising (explains my weight) and yes I drove at 100 mph on more than one occasion and not on a racing track, just the ordinary roads and all while wearing my big boy pants and I was never afraid of dying but I never wanted somebody else to die because of any of my stupid acts.

I think the experts are just that for a reason and until I have there knowledge can I then challenge them and disagree. Like you I may not agree or see the point of doing things, I like you have my own opinion but I still cannot say I know better than them.

Point being there have been a lot of deaths around the world, did you know that more people have died in America from this virus than was killed in the Viatnman war as far as is known at the moment." COVID-19 appears to be hitting parts of the United States, particularly New York, in a similar way as it did Wuhan, China. In the states the released data on those currently hospitalized, the average hospitalization rate was 11.5 admissions per 100,000 adults, the report said. In Louisiana, the rate was far higher, 49.5 per 100,000 adults." and this is the hospitals that have complied with the favour Mike Pence asked, where he asked them to fill in the daily amount of deaths and newly confirmed cases. I guess a couple a million people dying is not going to put much of a dent in the population.

I love forest Gump but life is no film and no box of chocolates, if it were we would all live forever by not eating the chocolates, nice idea really thanks Forest.
 

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Good morning Fedup,

I totally respect your point of view. All I’m saying is what is life worth if you don’t live?
We have epilepsy. Therefore we don’t drive because we put others at risk (including ourselves). However, does that mean we should never live our lives and leave our homes? No, we find ways to get through the obstacles. Same with the virus. Wash your hands. Wear a mask. Be cautious of touching your face etc. Like seizures, we can do EVERYTHING the doctor says (ie take our meds, have surgery, get a VNS etc) and still have seizures. Same with the virus. We can do everything they tell us and people will still die. All it takes is one person infected at the grocery store to contaminate all of the food. That’s where I brought in the utopian world. You and I (and everyone else) can follow all of the rules out there and people will still die from this virus. Why? Because this virus exists. How many die is the million dollar question. I’ve already given my thoughts via the grocery store (ie more people would have died if it was as deadly as they made it out to be) because everyone has to go there and get their food and eat it (thankfully it was not).

Same with driving. We don’t drive, but cars malfunction (ie flat tires, bad airbags, engines catch fire etc). Does that mean we should never get on the road because we get a flat tire which might cause a wreck in an Uber (or riding with a relative)? That goes back to the point of the “unknown.” I don’t know if something is going to happen with my Uber driver. God forbid, s/he might have a heart attack and now we’re going over a cliff (same with one of my relatives who was driving). Yes, less people would die of car wrecks if less people were driving (ie less risk/chance; same as people staying home due to the virus), but who gets to decide how many cars are allowed on the road and who (and why them assuming they are healthy; no seizures). Same with the virus. How many deaths are too many and decides that and why? Of course the answer is ZERO deaths, but that’s not going to happen. Point being, let the people make their own decisions and live. My dad is on chemo and VERY weak. My mom and I are very careful after going somewhere. However that shouldn’t restrict others’ lives.

Yes, be aware of your enemy (in this case, the virus). But don’t let it dictate you.
 

Nakamova

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Point being, let the people make their own decisions and live.
I think the tricky thing is if someone makes their own decision to live, but as a result infects someone else who dies. One person's decision to live may be a death sentence for someone else. I get what you are saying -- there are risks everywhere all the time (as Samuel Beckett says, we are "born astride the grave"), but some risks are clearer than others, or more preventable than others. Car crashes happen, but that doesn't mean I won't wear a seatbelt, or avoid driving drunk.
 

Fedup

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I agree all you have is life so live it, its tough on anybody else if they do not get to live it and it ain't my fault. Yes I have epilepsy but sorry I drove all my life until 4 years ago and I enjoyed it but I was cleared by the doctors to drive, if I thought for one second that I would put somebody in danger I would not have drove. I believe like so many others I hope that even though I have epilepsy my whole life (since I was born) that epilepsy does not own me or rule my life, it is up to me to live it to my best while still looking after my health. So I enjoyed driving, working was hard but I enjoyed it and then the best thing happened to me I got married and all this was against what my parents and I were told by the doctors when I was younger.

So to sum it up I would never get married, never work or be able to and there was no way I would ever drive, the only one who disagreed with all this was me, thank you for respecting me that means a lot.

Your right this virus will kill more people even if we follow the advice, but in saying that at lest I have the knowledge that it was not me that helped pass on the virus which killed that person, mind you we take all the medication some of us get a vns and God knows what else but for some of us we still end up taking medication and you still have seizures but that's life right, when I consider what I go through with a seizure or the amount of doctors visits even the fact that I was told "there are no more new drugs for you to try, you have tried them all" why care, right.

I agree it only takes one person to contaminate all the food at a grocery store or pass it on to you but did you ever wonder how long it lives on different types of packaging. That is probably why we are advised to ware gloves when outside, bring wipes to wipe down the handles of trolleys and baskets which ever you are using and advised to use hand wash when outside but wash your hands when you get home or I could be wrong.

I have always found it easy to get a car fixed when it comes to a flat tyre or even something like bad air bags but an engine catching fire now that would be worrying. You should never drive on a flat tyre anyway unless you can afford the price of a new tyre, if you do get a flat tyre (blow out) while driving hopefully you are driving slow otherwise like you say you cause a wreck. You should always know your vehicle and cheek it regularly so you are aware and can only be taken by the unknown or the unexpected.

However there is a big difference between driving and a virus which can kill somebody. Of course it cannot restrict your life or how you live but that do not mean I need to be reckless. Point being let people use their intellect and decide should I do my part and try and reduce the risk for myself and others or is it all about me.

Sorry to hear about your Dad and I wish him the best, you and your mom must do your best to look after yourselves as well which is easier said than done and sounds stupid and patronising but is meant only in the best way.
 
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