Thursday, April 30, 2020
I'm off today and tired today. One day blurs into another. Normally this time of the year we're busy planning our vacation but not this year. I was so looking forward to visiting Vancouver Island again, to seeing Birdie and my sister, to walking in the rainforests, to spending time by the ocean and now it's gone which makes me a little sad. And really, in the grand scheme of things, it's not a big thing but still it's a loss. The bookstore is closed. I avoid people like the plague:) The off leash park is closed. No friends over for supper. No supper out. None of this is a big deal. We both still have our jobs and are still working. Neither one of us is sick. We haven't lost anybody to this virus. We live in a sane country. We are so lucky, I am so lucky, but it's loss of a thousand small cuts and it slowly adds up over time.
My son has disappeared again so I'm guessing jail. Gracie has gone off the rails again so we're taking the little guy more. I try not to think about the future but it creeps in, the thoughts, the what ifs, the hope, the dread. If I stay busy I can stop the intrusive thoughts but eventually I lay down to sleep and they pile into bed with me. I have no control over the future but still my brain tries.
So today is a day to do one tax return and then work in the garden because I miss being outside. It was a long winter, made even longer by the virus. I know this won't last forever but it feels like it at times. One day is good, the next is bad. I know I'm not alone in this. I was talking to friends at work and we all feel the same way. Sigh.
Something good this week.
Saturday, April 25, 2020
This is an old photo, almost five years old, taken out at Medicine Lake in the late summer. The lake slowly drains over the course of the summer, exposing giant rocks and a road. The photo doesn't do the place justice because the rocks are enormous and the lake is 7 km long.
Work was hard yesterday. One of our frequent flyers, a young man with either leukemia or lymphoma, can't remember, came for his IT chemo and I asked him how he was. Not good he said. The doc told him that the chemo isn't working anymore, that they've run out of options. The young man is 31 years old. I wanted to hug him and I couldn't.
We had a lady in her eighties yesterday come down for a PICC line. She's from a retirement home so she was on isolation for suspected COVID. I had a yellow gown, mask, gloves and hat on while I interviewed her. She was crying because her husband died of cancer two years ago. He was a patient of ours. They were together for 62 years and she misses him so much. We were both crying and I couldn't hug her.
One of my coworkers is a very extroverted young woman who works and then goes home to be with her cat. She's having a hard time spending so much time along and I can't hug her.
I had no idea I hugged so many people. When I was a child I was very shy and hugs always filled me with anxiety, not the hug so much as the social rules around who to hug and who not to hug. I started hugging people when I hit my thirties. I grew up without hugs and I didn't want my children to grow up like that. Overnight I became a hugger and I'm okay with that. Fortunately I have the big guy to hug me and he does but there are so many people in the world right now who are alone and not getting hugs. It makes me sad this lack of hugging.
Sending out virtual hugs.
Wednesday, April 22, 2020
Joey from Joey's pad asked us to post some of our favorite things. This painting of the sunflowers was painted by a patient of mine. It's called perseverance. Years ago when I worked at the Glenrose Rehab Hospital this painting was hanging there, part of a show of this artist. I loved the painting. Fast forward a few years and the artist became a cancer patient of mine and we talked. She still had the painting for sale so I bought it. The artist has since died sadly but I still think of her and still love the painting.
The mess on the dining room table is my quilting.
Odds and sods on these shelves of things I've collected over the years and photos I've taken. The bear is from Jasper, the eagle face from Tofino, the glass ball from Peggy's Cove and the pitcher is from Rye.
My mum and dad bought me this deacons bench almost thirty years ago. It always reminds me of mum.
The clock is mum's. Dad bought it for her for their fortieth anniversary, I think. She always wanted a grandfather clock but there was no room in their house. The photo on the right is my father and his brothers and the paintings on the left are done by an artist in Sussex. The bottles on the right of the clock are from my mother in law, Dutch beer bottles. The rooster in the china cabinet is from my middle daughter. I like roosters.
My dresser top also has odds and sods. My favorite is the rubber chicken I found at mum's apartment when we cleaned it out. Mum had a wonderful sense of humor and I miss that most about her. I could tell her dirty jokes and she would be horrified and then laugh. The photos are of my children when they were young and the big guy with our granddaughter at our wedding. Jemima Puddle Duck is a music box I bought when my middle daughter was born. She didn't take it with her so I still have it. The urn had some of my mum's ashes in it before I scattered them near Beckley. The rock is from Haida Gwaii as is the hand made, woven basket.
I have more stuff that means something than I realized.
What about you?
Monday, April 20, 2020
My week in photos. Lucy ended up having to go to the vet because her gash wouldn't heal. She gets the drain out tonight which will make her feel better I'm guessing. It's starting to itch which is a good sign. She's on antibiotics and pain meds.
We have a mayday tree which sadly has become overrun with black fungus. We didn't know anything about it when we moved into this house and the tree had never been pruned by the previous owners. You have to cut about ten inches below the black fungus infection and as you can see, that's most of the branches. We got it about half done this weekend, including a full day of burning the branches because they have to be burned or put into the landfill in plastic bags which I won't do. By the time we're done the tree will die which breaks my heart a little. That tree gave us so much shade and privacy, not to mention robins nests.
As you can see Lucy is coping with her injury, barely. She's not a fan of wearing a t-shirt but it stops her from scratching the wound.
Gracie had a bad day yesterday so the little guy is with us for a couple of days. He's wearing a pink sleeper because it only cost $3 and he doesn't care. He loves the pantry. He goes in there and just looks at all the food and touches the containers. Wait until he finds out there is candy in there.
He was also helping me with the laundry which I appreciate so much. He's such a character, so curious, wandering around with his music, waving his hands and just enjoying life in general. He doesn't seem to mind the lockdown at all.
Later after his nap we're going to go for a long walk and get some fresh air.
Stay safe my friends.
Friday, April 17, 2020
Granny, Auntie Moya and my mum in the buggy, taken probably around 1928 or 1929, maybe in Worthing. My cousin sent me this photo; she was going through stuff, as she is also locked down and has time on her hands, and found it. Mum was the only dark haired girl in a family of four girls. I wish I had known granny, from talking to my cousins it sounds like granny was a lot like my mum.
The pandemic continues. Isn't that just fucking fantastic!
I had another rough week but I held it together and made it through the week with only one bout of crying at work. We now have to wear masks all the time a work as they have discovered COVID is much more contagious than originally thought. No kidding.
There is something called the R0 number. R0 refers to the number of people that one sick person goes onto infect in a population that has no immunity. The R0 number of COVID varies between 2.2 and 5.7. Measles for example has a R0 number of between 3.7 to 203. Measles is very contagious. The seasonal flu has a R0 factor of about 1.3. So COVID is more contagious than the flu but less contagious than measles. It has to do with the number of people in the population and the level of immunity in the population as well. Humans have no immunity to this new coronavirus so it's racing like wildfire through the population. It has a low mortality rate, the number of people who die from the disease, but because it is so widespread, it has the ability to overwhelm health care services in a population, hence the social distancing thing. It helps to slow the spread of the disease, not stop it. Until about 82% of us have immunity to it, either through having the disease or through vaccination, it will continue on. It's here to stay.
Here's an interesting article on it. https://www.businessinsider.com/coronavirus-contagious-r-naught-average-patient-spread-2020-3.
In other news, nothing has happened here. Our beagle cut her back open last weekend and we thought it was healing but it's not so I took her to the vet this morning. Other than that, nothing is happening here.
It's supposed to rain here today and the snow is rapidly disappearing. Once it gets going it's amazing to see how fast it retreats. I hear the geese honking as they fly overhead and I hear the chickadees singing, trying to attract a mate. The sun rises earlier and sets later. The world continues on without us.
I'm in a mood. Sorry. Tomorrow will be better.
Stay safe my friends.
Saturday, April 11, 2020
I finished stitching all the blocks for my new quilt. This quilt is for me and the big guy and our room is green. It stitched up quickly and I love the colors. Now I'm just stitching the blocks together and then it will go to the quilter so it will be ready for summer.
We were told about a park east of the city where we could take dogs and where there were walking trails. Apparently it's only been open for 3.5 years but I don't think many people know about it. When we arrived there were three other cars in the parking lot and we never saw a soul while we walked the trails. It was heaven.
The snow was still deep off the trails. Poor Heidi tried going off the trails a few times and ended up in snow up to her neck. The weather was warm and sunny. I needed that time. It filled my cup.
I bought groceries this morning which was stressful, more stressful than I thought it would be. But when I yelled at some guy who was backing up without looking and almost hit me, I realized I was kinda stressed. I brought a mask with me and wasn't going to wear it but the line up was so long for the check out that I put it on. There a lot of people in the store and I felt uncomfortable wearing the mask but who cares.
I also found out yesterday that we are now required to wear masks when giving patient care so I'll be wearing a mask all week at work too. Yay. I don't like wearing masks, they're hot and uncomfortable. I want this to end.
On the up side, we now have a lovely place to walk among the trees and the weather is warming up.
Friday, April 10, 2020
Work is work. Cancer doesn't care if there is a pandemic going on. We are screened going into to the hospital, fill out a form that says we have no COVID-19 symptoms and then have to sign it. I check my temp when I get to DI. No visitors are allowed except for interpreters or for people who can't physically manage on their own. Our waiting rooms feel empty but we still have the same number of patients, just no family or friends. Everything is quiet and it feels strange and slightly ominous. Usually our department is noisy and full of life and talking and laughter. Not now.
I was off yesterday so spent the day making a birthday cake for my grandson. He turned one yesterday already. We dropped off the cake and a present and stayed for a few minutes to hug him and take a few pictures. Gracie was having people over, not a lot but too many in my opinion. She and I butted heads yesterday so that was fun. Both of us ended up crying. Isolation is hard. Single parenting is hard. Grandparenting a child with messed up parents is hard.
I feel glum today. Social distancing is unpleasant. I miss hugging my friends. Now when I see people I avoid them. Back away. It feels unnatural and cold but necessary. I wonder if they have the virus. I went for a long walk with one of the dogs yesterday and everyone and their dog was out, literally. I had to get off the paths and walk on the sidewalks which I don't like nearly as much but it's easier to avoid people that way.
I had a horrible dream this morning about getting ready to put in a central line. We didn't have the equipment we needed, everybody kept contaminating me, nobody knew what they were doing, including the docs and throughout all of this I had to pee. Doesn't take a psychologist to figure that dream out.
The sun has just come out from behind the clouds now so maybe today will be a better day. We found out about a park east of the city to walk the dogs in so we're going there today. All of us need fresh air and exercise. Fingers crossed.
Saturday, April 4, 2020
I didn't have a good start to the morning, I sliced my finger open while cutting up bread crusts to make croutons and it wouldn't stop bleeding and I had no bandaids. I went to Walmart which feels like walking into a germ factory right now. Everything I touched, I wondered if it had COVID on it. I got what I needed, including a chocolate Easter bunny for next weekend and band aids. When I got home I watched Heidi and the neighbor's dog playing in the snow. I baked a loaf of sourdough and then I picked up my grandson.
The best part of the day was seeing him. He turns one next week and he's grown so much even in the two weeks since we've seen him. The day is better now. It amazes me how much I love this little guy.
Thursday, April 2, 2020
Tired of corona virus.
Tired of stress.
Tired of everyone else's stress.
Tired of washing my hands.
Tired of wondering when it will hit me.
Tired of lazy people.
Tired of stupid people.
Tired of the news.
Tired of the weather.
Tired of not hugging my friends.
Tired of being told to do the same amount of work with fewer people.
Tired of fear.
Tired of missing Miss Katie.
Tired of staying inside.
Tired of the world turned upside down.
Tired of people that don't get it.
Tired of feeling tired.
Just fucking tired.
Wednesday, April 1, 2020
So There's That:)
We had a medium sized dump of snow the other day and it's been cold so it's hanging around. The sun came out today though, so there's that.
We had a medium sized dump of snow the other day and it's been cold so it's hanging around. The sun came out today though, so there's that.
I'm off work today, my regular day off and I've been listening to the radio, quilting and baking. I started a new quilt for me and the big guy. I love greens and blues so that's the fabrics I chose before the fabric stores closed. I noticed though that I can still buy fabric online from one of the quilt shops here and you pick it up like take out, so there's that.
The dogs are not bothered at all by the cold weather or the virus. They are true champions at staying calm in the middle of a pandemic. The neighbor's dog is still jumping the fence so that she and Heidi are able to get a lot of exercise, so there's that.
It's after lunch here and I still haven't had a shower yet. I slept in and made a loaf of sourdough and now I'm making sourdough cinnamon buns. We'll see how they turn out. Good I hope. Our lovely neighbor on the other side of us, he has a nasty little dog, shoveled our driveway yesterday so I'll take some cinnamon buns over to him and his mom. Human kindness continues to exist thank goodness, so there's that.
Work has been busy and the disruptive coworker is back and continues to disrupt our work. Fuck I hate that. She is passively aggressively nice and does as little as possible. She refuses to work as part of a team and thinks only of herself, always. Yesterday it was breaks and working in fluoro. I finally told her to go in there. Sometimes she listens to me but often just does as she pleases. At least some things don't change, so there's that.
Life continues on. Work continues on. I now video chat with Miss Katie and my grandson, neither of whom understand the concept but seem to be accommodating the change. I did get an extreme close up of both Miss Katie, her eyeball, and my grandson, his forehead, so there's that.
Take care and stay safe.