Posted by: Ziah
Posted: 24th Mar 2020
I'm scared for myself. I am immunocompromised and have many chronic conditions. I worry how sick I will be when I eventually get this horrific virus (and make no mistake, an absolute minimum of 70% of the world's population will get it eventually), whether there will be a hospital bed, an ICU room (in a state of 2 million people, we have 130 ICU beds) a ventilator (we have 129 ventilators state-wide) or any staff left to care for those who are sick. I have been self-isolating ever since my GP clinic sent out a message last Tuesday (17 March), but I have a husband who still has to work. I worry so much he will bring it home with him. I also worry he will get sick, and no matter how healthy he may be, the risk of him dying from this damn virus is always there.
I worry for my 74 year old, 2x breast cancer survivor mother in law, who has COPD/emphysema, diabetes and other issues. She has finally agreed to self-isolate, and I am petrified we will lose her to this virus after all we have all gone through since her first BC diagnosis 15 years ago.
I worry that there is very little food on our shelves - particularly for our vulnerable people. IF they don't get the virus, they may starve to death. Cases of scurvy and rickets will be on the rise very soon. Malnutrition is already an issue for some frail aged and disabled people - isolation will simply make it so much worse.
I worry for my extended family. My sister in law just had to close her dance school - and I do not know how they will survive without her income. I worry for her father, who is frail aged, and her grandmother, who is obviously older, and also frailer still. Fortunately, my grandparents and my husband's grandparents are no longer here to go through this ordeal. I have another brother and sister-in-law interstate, and I worry for her parents who are frail aged and very unwell as well.
I worry for the sheer number of older Australians who are at high risk of death with this virus.
I worry about all the local businesses who have just shut their doors yesterday and today. I worry for their staff - and how they will survive. I worry that these wonderful businesses may not be able to reopen in the future if their landlords don't stop asking for rent. I worry for the economy, that it will take a very long time to recover from this.
I worry about my dear friends in the US and UK. My US friends have no leave, no employment protection, no welfare, no help. They are almost all still at work - one of them had a confirmed C-19 case IN HER OFFICE - and she has diabetes and is almost 65. Many employers are not allowing employees to isolate. They are not closing their doors. They are not protecting their staff. They are taking their cues from an orange ape who thinks social distancing can be lifted after 15 days. A few have been allowed to work from home, but they are in the minority. One has had her workplace close, but she is just one out of the dozens of friends we have there. And so many people just don't care and don't believe it is serious. They really don't get that a novel virus means ZERO people are immune to it, and the vast majority of people will get it, and a large number of them will be very sick - and a not-insignificant percentage - currently ten times the rate of flu deaths per 1000 cases - will die.
I worry for the world as a whole. There are still far too many people who think this virus is nothing to be concerned with, and are not social distancing (a local case today - a woman was actually arrested for failing to isolate after returning from overseas within the last week and was shouting about it on social media how she didn't care and wasn't going to stop her own life for anyone else). I was abused on social media for suggesting that social distancing and self-isolation was not about that person, ad the sheer number of people that supported that person was staggering. It's not about one person. It's about your grandparents/great grandparents/uncles/aunties etc. It's about that little boy with leukaemia down the street. It's your kids' teacher with diabetes, or the owner of your favourite restaurant with asthma. It's that nursing home of frail aged and disabled people across the road. It's that hospital in the next suburb full of staff taking care of sick people that is now having to decide who lives and who dies because someone failed to isolate and infected 2 other people, who infected 2 people each and so on, and overwhelmed the available resources and there's no hospital beds left, let alone an ICU bed or a ventilator in sight. It's the heart attack or stroke or car accident victims - which statistically speaking is quite likely - that come into a hospital that is already at breaking point with C-19 patients that will now die because there simply are no resources left.
Let just be really clear about this. It's. Not. About. YOU. It is about all of us. we are in this thing together, for better or worse, like it or not. There is no other planet to go to. You cannot get off this ride. So stop being so damn selfish, stop hoarding groceries, isolate your damn selves and think of someone else for a change!
So now I am going to go and self-medicate with some video gaming to get this nightmare out of my mind for an hour or so. Then I will go out in my garden towards sunset and enjoy the golden hour. Then I will cook our dinner, watch some Netflix, load the dishwasher and go to bed, and wake up tomorrow and do it all again.
And hope everyone I love is able to do the same.