The Coronavirus Life

by Stephanie Weemhoff, 04/11/2020, Traverse City, Mi

Adult Category


It started out exciting. Like a snow day. At last, no social expectations and nowhere to be. But then cases increased to double and triple digits by Washington, California, and New York. Eventually Wisconsin and Illinois, then Indiana. They were getting closer and we were looking for updates. By the hour. Then: Michigan. The boys had runny noses, Nathan, a headache. Myself: tired and a sore throat. No fevers.
It’s strange to consider that some cases are lethal, some have no symptoms at all. It’s like Russian Roulette. How will your body respond? There are not enough doctors, masks, ventilators, respirators. China then Iran then Italy are forced to choose who gets medical treatment because there are just too many who are sick. We must ‘flatten the curve’ to not overwhelm our hospitals like that. One moment you’re scared and facing imminent death, like a ticking clock, the next it’s just like a cold. What to believe?
News articles from a day ago are outdated. Live updates happen hourly and daily. It is scary. Helpless. Tragic. The news makes us constantly feel like we are over-reacting or under-reacting. Wiping down grocery deliveries with disinfectant, leaving packages three days in the garage. It’s better to trust God and not to worry.
We built a bear cave in the living room today. Raked up dog poo in the backyard. Ate lunch on a blanket in the dining room because the table was part of the bear cave. Joann Fabrics is giving away free pre-cut fabric curb side to make medical masks. Car factories are going to make protective medical equipment. Celebrities are posting music, reading stories and poems on social media to boost morale. Prince Charles tested positive today.
Home life is an odd mix of playing with the kids, watching movies, and checking the news. I planted tomato and lettuce seeds in case the food industry collapses. I had a panic attack yesterday. I couldn’t breathe and thought it was going to get worse and kill me. I sat crying on the bathroom floor with steam from the shower and Nathan helped me calm down.
It’s better to not watch the news or hear that cases are doubling in a matter of days, medical supplies are short, hospitals are filling… “Let us fix our eyes on Jesus…Let not your hearts be troubled, neither be afraid.” I tried to bake bread yesterday…ten cups of flour wasted.
March 28th-There are 5,000 Covid cases in Michigan: 111 deaths. God is in control of all of this. We are trusting. In him. Thankful for each day. Cherishing moments together.
Numbers don’t matter. It feels like we’re in the ”Hunger Games.” The inevitable will be inevitable. God is in control. My life is not my own. It never was. Numbers are going up all over. All we can do is continue on and take care of each other. With medical systems threatening capacity, and lacking necessary supplies, we may have no other help.
I can’t even wrap my head around numbers anymore. Almost 400 deaths in Michigan now. Almost 8,000 cases. It just continues to go up everywhere. I’m not even tracking earlier hot spots like China, Iran, or Italy…even other states. Just Michigan and counties and how many are in the hospitals. Munson is not overwhelmed yet. Near Ann Arbor it’s chaos with non-covid patients not getting the attention they need because the covid patients are requiring so much of it. April 4th-Before I lay down, my chest burned. It was hard to breathe, like someone was sitting on my lungs. I was sucking in air, but not getting a full breath. I laid down after a morning of drinking hot and cold fluids and eating to not much improvement. As I rest, I try to slow my breathing, making them long, easing the work my lungs have to do. They feel inflamed. Swollen and warm inside. I try not to move by reserving all my energy for healing. After an hour or more, I feel better. I can almost breathe without thinking about it. The burning is more of an ache or a sting. I feel cool, fresh air going into me and each breath satisfies what my body wants. I just can’t overdo talking, moving. 14,225 cases and 540 deaths in Michigan. I forgot to mention Nate’s urgent care visit involved a chest x-ray which was fine. No fever, so no covid test. They did not rule it out, but a test wouldn’t change the treatment as symptoms are too mild. They told him not to do exercise. They’re calling it bronchitis but if it gets worse go to the E.R. I also got my hands on some hand soap. The only place I could find for my frugal Ivory bar soap-loving self was Bath and Body Works. $5.00 a pop. But, they fancy. Foaming. Fragrances of: ice cream Shoppe, lavender-mint, and two kitchen Lemon. Hopefully in addition to smelling nice they are also effective. 22,783 Michigan cases. 1,281 deaths so far. Beyond that, I can’t keep track. It’s too much right now. Johns Hopkins knows.