This Is Real Life

I belong to a neighborhood “chat” group and today one of the members shared that two of his best friends — a former president (1986-2000) of the local community college and his wife — had both been admitted to the ER on Tuesday (12/8) with COVID-19.

A little over a week later (12/18), the couple’s son was also admitted to the hospital suffering from pneumonia and COVID-19 symptoms.

Later that day, the mother passed–dying alone because both son and husband were confined to their own hospital beds.

The father is now fighting for his own life and the son is being treated in hopes his condition doesn’t worsen. Neither can visit the other.

The writer made the comment how this event has put things into sharp perspective for him. When the virus hits this close to home, you suddenly recognize the very real danger it carries. He added that although he had planned to be with his sons over the holiday, he now felt it would be better for all to celebrate from a distance.

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Another COVID-19 case was included in our local newspaper. A woman who lives in a small Oregon community (2000 +/-) was not all that concerned about the virus. She did take some precautions (wearing a mask in public), but overall, lived life as usual — as did most others in the area.

In early November, she drove about 75 miles to visit her son (who has cystic fibrosis) and daughter-in-law. They all went shopping, had lunch, and just hung out at the house. Later in the evening as they were having dinner, the daughter-in-law got a call that her parents has gone to urgent care with flu-like symptoms … and it turned out to be COVID-19.

Just days before, the parents had driven to Idaho to pick up the girl’s grandparents, who had been there visiting a sick relative. I’m sure you can guess what comes next. The sick relative had COVID-19.

Now reality sets in. 

Without sharing a number of details, suffice it to say the woman, the son, and the daughter-in-law all ended up testing positive for the virus. The woman had the worst case with what she described as a severe head cold and breathing problems, but all the family members suffered the common symptoms. Fortunately, no one was hospitalized.

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What each of us needs to keep in mind is this virus is insidious. It can move undetected and be spread by people with no symptoms at all.

Once it manifests, it can make you feverish, tired, nauseous, out of breath, and may be accompanied by excessive coughing. Just a bad cold, you say? Perhaps. But that “bad cold” can land you in the hospital.

And it can kill you.

Along with the ones you love.

COVID-19 is Deadly Serious.

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Image by Tumisu from Pixabay