I don’t like to be inconvenienced. It makes me grouchy.
When the first pandemic warnings came out, it felt like overreaction to me. So there’s a virus. Too bad.
When my supermarket-stocker son told me his store sold more in two days than they’d sold from Thanksgiving to Christmas, I was mystified. Why were people buying up all the paper products and canned foods?
One by one, all my weekly activities that I love got canceled: hand bell choir, church choir, folk dancing, bible study, Sunday worship, the quilting ministry, symphony concerts. Even the folk dance festival that I helped put together got canceled. I got grouchier.
My husband went into the hospital on March 11 for spinal surgery. He’d been struggling with vertigo for many months and tried a number of different treatments, but his dizziness and falls persisted. He had spinal stenosis, and surgery was his last option. The night before he asked me, “Is this elective surgery?” I didn’t know how to answer; his quality of life was so bleak. I decided that if his surgery was deemed not necessary, the hospital would have to tell us so.
Unfortunately, Greg hasn’t yet bounced back as expected. As of this writing, he’s been transferred to a skilled nursing facility. The last time I was allowed to visit him was March 20. As hard as that is on me, I suspect it’s even harder on him and our grown children who haven’t seen him since before the surgery. But as an older person with a compromised immune system, he’s probably in the safest possible place.
My older son just learned that the restaurant where he’s worked for 17 years has closed for good. I panicked when I heard that, but he’s already strategizing his job hunt.
I’m not telling you all my problems to elicit sympathy for me. Everyone has had to make sacrifices during this time. I know that most people have it worse than I do.
My real reason for writing this is to tell you what I’ve observed.
Members of every group I belong to have called me or texted me to ask how I’m doing or if there’s anything I need. Not just my children and my friends, but also my pastors and ministry leaders. Not just once, but multiple times. My son’s restaurant, before it closed, cooked food and gave it away for free. People are going out of their way to help others and anticipate needs. I went to the fabric store for some thread, and people were there picking up materials to make medical masks for the hospitals.
It just so happens that I have everything I need. My house is well stocked. But not being forgotten touches me deeply when so many people are struggling. It even makes me less grouchy.
Thank you for all you do in your communities. And if you need help, just ask.