Pandemic journal: Day 13

Thursday, March 26, 7:58AM

Day 13 of voluntary social distancing, Day 10 of mandatory shelter-in-place, Day 7 of statewide shelter-in-place

Theme of the week: space 

Unsettling: I can’t tell if I’m getting sick. Yesterday I felt dizzy. I learned my friend N has a fever and I spent the next few hours doomscrolling and anxiety-cleaning. After intensively sweeping the living room I started to sniffle and cough; I figured it was dust but not long after, I got that hot feeling in my head that always presages my getting ill. By nighttime my chest felt hollow. My temperature was 98ºF — negligible even if ear thermometers are as inaccurate as they say — but still. It’s hard not to worry. I started planning how I could self-isolate in our apartment… the bathroom is the worst vector; maybe E and Owl could store their toothbrushes in a different room and use different towels… but E said if one of us is sick, we all will be. But I read that we’re most infectious when we’re symptomatic, and anyway it would be dreadful to not isolate and then wish later that I had tried harder to protect my family. Surely I don’t have it… OTOH some percentage of people are asymptomatic… and there aren’t any for-sure telltale symptoms anyway. I’ve stopped sharing food with E and Owl to be safe. And E and I aren’t kissing anymore. 

All I want to do at the moment is go back to sleep.

A nice thing from yesterday is I posted on FB about wanting a hug, and got so many virtual hugs from so many different friends, including an offer of a phone call from PH which is a sweet, bolstering thought even if he never follows through. And then I got a call from J, a relief; I hadn’t been able to reach her earlier and was wondering if that meant she had already been deployed to frontline COVID duty. But it turned out she was just napping. We talked for almost 2 hours, such a gift. She was very reassuring about the virus and filled me in on her situation and that of other healthcare workers she knows; it’s utterly insane, but with elective procedures cancelled, many of them have been laid off or placed on some kind of weird “we might call you but we might not” rotation, so she was saying she feels lucky to still have her job, which is really just… not the way one imagines a nurse ought to feel about working during a pandemic. 

Quick rundown of what else I did yesterday: Countertechnique class, preschool circle, cooking black beans, preschool afternoon art activity (Owl lost interest), ordering art supplies online, Owl meltdown, chats with Y (she knows a nurse hospitalized with COVID) and TR (her grandma has died, not of COVID) and LB (her highly social kids have been outside on their scooters for 2 hours and are trying to say hello to everyone), emergency preschool planning committee meets this weekend and as president-elect I am on it, E went to pick up the CSA/CSF and I cooked spot prawns for dinner, I watched a video of a stressed physician talking about how to disinfect groceries and takeout and it made me feel even more paranoid… 

Spot prawns in tomato sauce

I don’t know how I will take care of myself today. Owl is being excessively loud. 

Sending loving thoughts to healthcare workers, both on the frontlines and not (or waiting to see if they will be).