I’ve seen too many people lately suggesting we fight COVID19 through “herd immunity.” This makes me very angry for two reasons. First, we know so little about this disease that we don’t even know if “herd immunity” will work. We don’t know if the antibodies our bodies create fighting it will be sufficient to prevent multiple infections, nor do we know its mutation vectors yet. Second, “herd immunity” relies on exposing everyone to the disease and letting a certain percentage of the population die. Frankly, I don’t want friends and family members to die due to this kind of stupidity, and I don’t think anyone else would, either. The whole point of social distancing and shelter-at-home orders are to keep everyone from getting this damn disease all at the same time, because if everyone gets it at once, our health care system won’t be able to care for them. Flattening the curve means that we all get exposed gradually in a way our hospitals and health staff can handle. So stop suggesting that “herd immunity” is a plausible, non-catastrophic solution!!
Repeating: If your mental health is at a point where you cannot bear to hear more about quarantine stuff, skip to the bottom of this post for a list of positives and highlights and Nice Things. We all need some of that right now!
–Friday, April 10th
Local count: 665, 24 deaths, 92 recovered. The two new deaths today are both from the nursing home outbreak, taking their total to 12 of our 24 deaths. We also had our first confirmed case in the county jail today, which is really worrying. At home: With Jason’s negative test results back, I was able to leave the house today and go for a run. It felt soooo nice to get out and move my body after five days inside and with no exercise. Plus, the honeysuckle is in bloom! <– Jason continues to improve and hasn’t had a fever in two days. He didn’t need any kind of Tylenol/etc today either.
–Saturday, April 11th
Local count: 723, 27 deaths (14 from nursing home outbreak), 119 recovered. I woke up – at 4:40, no less – and had body aches all over. Insomnia dulled my brain, and anxiety had me freaking out…until I remembered that I went out running for the first time in over a week yesterday. Of course my body is stiff and sore. (insert face palm and eye roll here) Otherwise, it was a fairly uneventful day.
–Sunday, April 12th
Local count: 772, 30 deaths (15 NH), 135 recovered. The morning started with another 4:40 wakeup, ugh. After three large cups of coffee, we began our Easter celebrations. The boys did an egg hunt indoors, and then a cascarone fight out in the front yard. We got to Polo the entire thing for the family to see, which was nice. Unfortunately, around noon, things got really bad. My grandmother was rushed to the ER for what appeared to be a series of strokes, and due to COVID19 protocols, no one could stay with her. My mom went out to stay with my grandpa, who lacks the capacity to care for himself since his hospitalization last summer. The local (small town) hospital couldn’t find anything wrong in brain scans or bloodwork, so my grandma was transferred to San Antonio for further tests. This is incredibly worrisome for all the regular reasons, plus no one can stay with her, plus she might come in contact with COVID19 (and is a very vulnerable member of the population).
–Monday, April 13th
Local count: 794, 33 deaths (16 NH), 135 recovered. That is the smallest step up we’ve seen in several weeks and I really hope it’s a good sign (rather than labs backed up over Easter). No new news about my grandmother. Tests continue to come back normal. Strong possibility she’s had TIAs (like mini-strokes that don’t cause permanent damage) but we won’t know for sure until the MRI results come in. Other than that general worry, it was a pretty good day today: a 5K in the morning, and a virtual party for the March/April birthdays – fancy dress suggested! – for our hiking group in the evening.
–Tuesday, April 14th
Local count: 815, 33 deaths (16 NH), 141 recovered. I saw an article today that says the WHO doesn’t know if covid-antibodies are enough to prevent a second infection with the virus later on, which is one of the big things I mentioned in my rant above (written several days earlier). This is extremely worrisome and we need to continue to stay safe at home until we get on the other side of this! We have some models out in San Antonio that predict we’ll hit our peak in late April to mid-May, which is definitely further out than originally predicted. We’re really doing a good job here, despite our high death rate percentage (which is mostly due to the unfortunate nursing home outbreak). As for my grandmother, MRI confirmed that she’s had a minor stroke with only minimal permanent damage (some mild vision loss in one eye), and she’s on new medications and regimens to make sure this doesn’t happen again. Definitely a relief! I need a few less exciting days!!
–Wednesday, April 15th
Local count: 890, 37 deaths (17 NH), 147 recovered. Sad to say that this is the second-highest daily increase in cases that we’ve seen in San Antonio. Most likely the low numbers these last two days were a backlog from the holiday weekend. There also is an increasing number of cases breaking out at the county jail, despite all the precautions the city has taken. At home: The boys have started getting info on their modified, at-home AP tests, which’ll be interesting. We have no vegetables because the selection has been scant and going bad quickly, so my body is craving some good nutrition. At least the cold front means I’ve been able to do a lot more walking. Though I did encounter a family of eight, half in masks, at the trails today, ranting about how we need to start opening things up again because “They” (the media? WHO? Democrats? Lizard folk?) are deliberating trying to destroy America…
–Thursday, April 16th
Local count: 918, 37 deaths (17 NH), 176 recovered. I decided to add the recovery data to my spreadsheet/graph. The numbers didn’t start to come in until March 30th, but it helps me to see them in conjunction with the other numbers. We did get a few local updates today. San Antonio decided to make face masks mandatory (rather than suggested), effective immediately. Thankfully, outdoor exercise is exempt from this requirement as long as you’re practicing good social distancing measures. I’m relieved, because if it was required during exercise, that’d be the end of running for the next few months…
It was a rough week, given my grandmother’s stroke and a bit of snowball emotion for me regarding how long we’ve been stuck inside. I know we have another few months to go, and that’s tough.
Positives and Highlights and Nice Things
With the world a mess right now, I need a place to look at all the good things. Here are some highlights of my week:
- time and endurance improvements on my runs
- Laurence finished pulling off the planks of our deck, so we can begin the next phase of building
- Morrigan dyed his hair for the first time (red, though didn’t end up as red as he’d have liked)
- Since we couldn’t make true grass baskets for Easter, we had a lot of fun with makeshift materials. (see photo above)
- Jason and I watched Dark Waters, which is both a phenomenal and terrifying movie.
- restaurants that allow curbside pickup so our family can still have “eating out” nights
- cards received from friends
- virtual birthday party night with my hiking friends
- crossing off another box on my running bingo!
- a new one-mile PR
- a lovely cold front for a few days this week
How are all of you holding up right now? Is your state or local community looking out for you?