Social distancing – we’re doing it.
We made a big grocery store run, cancelled 99% of our appointments, opted to take time away from ABA, Kenny and I are both working from home, rescheduled vacations … The list goes on.
Kenny was a long-time heavy smoker and is convinced he has respiratory issues. I have anemia and my white blood cell count is significantly out of control which the doctor tells me in layman’s terms means that my body always thinks it’s sick so when I actually am sick it doesn’t really know what to do – so my sickness always tends to be stronger and longer than someone else’s. And Lennon, being born prematurely and having a variety of comorbid health issues, is always a worry of ours.
I know our situation is not nearly as significant as many others, but it still has my anxiety through the roof.
We are taking the COVID-19 pandemic seriously.
The hardest decision we faced was taking time away from ABA. We know the decision was necessary, but it was met with a lot of guilt. Our BCBA called us to let us know how we would be impacting our RBT and herself (financially) and she also voiced concerns about potentially losing all the progress Lennon has made. I don’t know if this was her intent, but it sure felt like she was trying to make us feel guilty for putting Lennon’s health first. And we absolutely love both of them – they are doing AMAZING things with Lennon.
We get it, trust me – WE GET IT.
We didn’t want to stop, but the health risk was too great.
While I will be working from home I fully intend to take regular breaks to work on Lennon’s ABA programs with him – puzzles, matching, “give me”, PECS, using utensils at mealtime, his stress squishy for his big emotions, attending to tasks – everything that I know how to do. I often feel very in the dark about what they work on since I typically work out of the home.
Hopefully I will be enough.
Hopefully he doesn’t lose any progress.
Other things I’m nervous about:
- My sister. She is an entertainer and a majority of her work has been cancelled or requires her to be with groups of people. I’m worried about her getting sick from going places and I’m worried about how all this is going to affect her financially.
- My senior parents. While my mom is social distancing, David (step-dad) isn’t – and obviously his decisions will impact her. My dad says he and Kay (step-mom) are “laying low” which I’m sure he just said to make me feel better and they are probably still going out and about.
- My friends that own their own businesses. When I asked one of them how they were doing, her response was, “Oh girl! We are super f*cked.” Another stated, “It’s a nightmare as you can imagine.”
- The people we serve at work. These are folks with intellectual disabilities that may not understand the severity of the situation. They need advocates on their side who will guide them and keep them safe. And I don’t think all of them have that.
I’m also thinking about all the people that have lost jobs, or are still working but don’t have childcare. The people with medically fragile children. The doctors and nurses who are putting themselves in harms way. The people who think they are invincible and heading to the Vegas Strip for a night of partying. The people who are sick at home. The decision-makers at the hospitals who decide which individual gets the last respirator.
It’s all so overwhelming.
I encourage everyone to stay safe and do what’s best for their family. Listen to the professionals and their recommendations. Limit your time on social media so you don’t go crazy. Don’t share posts from nonreputable sources.
If you’re social distancing like us – enjoy the time with your family. Facetime with friends and relatives. Make the most of it!
Oh, and wash your hands.