Tuesday, March 17, 2020

Laughter ( lockdown updates 1,2,3,4,5)

is the sound of mirth and joy....giggles...titters..chuckles...merriment...expressions of happiness...even some of these less spoken words cause me to chortle!

I am posting today in tribute and celebration of my dearest friend and brother Jerry A.  A true Master of "one-liners".  No matter my mood, he can and has pulled me up from my emotional depths and to get my belly to rumbling.  Those who know me well, my midriff would be very noticeable in a hearty laugh! I do try to delay, at times, Jerrys' gratification with my hysterical laughter by acting as if the joke, comment went right over my head. Much easier I might add over the phone. So now I will give you a tickler: His sons asked dad, where do you want us to scatter your ashes when the time comes? his reply, "Surprise me!"

In the '80s at a New Age workshop, a handout revealed the list of  NW indigenous Inuit tribe's favorite human attributes. At the top of the list was "humor". So I ask my question about love....and I remember a quote from Robin Williams, "basically when you laugh you have to make a fool of yourself." And I submit,  I can only do this when I love myself and feel loved. Life can be full of so much apparent seriousness and I do mean apparent. Fear can have and create a life of its own. Humor is and comes from a place that sees or knows there is a bigger picture. This is where my other question, "What has God got to do with it?", comes into view.  Romans 15:13

In memorial, I am going to mention a dear friend and my super fan, that I miss dearly, Marjorie.. We spent her last three weeks together, 24/7, and created nicknames for each other. Mine became easily chosen for me, as "My Jewel' and mine for her was "My Sunshine", after a 3am pain pill was needed and she broke out in song, "you are my sunshine!" Each day we found together something to smile or laugh about, and these were our gifts to each other. She spoke up one afternoon, as two of her sons, Paul, John was visiting, along with daughter Karen, at her bedside. We thought she was soundly sleeping. Suddenly over our laughter, she spoke clearly, "doesn't she have the best laugh!" Next, I did a laughter quote search on google. What surfaced fits perfectly here, "A good laugh is like sunshine in a house." Indeed Marge.  William Makepeace Thackery     

Look for updates of this posting during the National Emergency for the next 15 days. An observance of love, service, and laughter with each other!

March 19 update:

Toilet Paper  

Toilet paper, a shortage, and a potential threat to the American way of life.!? Wow who could have known. This hoarding of an item needed for one's own personal comfort with no regard for others' current need, and leave the shelves empty.  As Gandhi so eloquently puts it, "The world has enough for everyone's need, but not everyone's greed." Thus the empty grocery shelves in one day of panic over this pandemic. So my laughter on this subject is coming from the image of the ones who have chosen a very small view, over a greater one of love and rest in the faith all is good for now. This round small viewpoint by some, sitting safely tucked away and secure in the recliner watching FOX News 24/7.

March 20 update

COVID-19 Checklist
  • C …  "Cookies, cookies, cookies, and more cookies!" For me, for my friend Betty as we sit and sip our coffee, and for Teddy, I made him doggie biscuits. Do not forget to enjoy the sweetness of life with the ones you LOVE.
  •  O...…….."Overcome we shall" Yes I am confident, attitude is up, immune system up and then I lapse into a place of denial as though all is ok! " Come on over and visit," I have time on my hands. Why not. Enjoy technology, it is there to keep us all connected..
  • V....Visualize the news...turn off the sound on the TV. Turn on the captions.  Many commentators LOVE the sound of their voices. Gone are the days of going outside to fetch our newspaper with bedhead and being able to read at our leisure the factual information we could refer to later for updates as needed until the birdcage needs a new liner.
  • I.......Identify the real enemy here. FEAR. If our POTUS prefers to call this a "War", then I will refer to a wise leader, President Roosevelt. he reminded us, "There is nothing to fear but fear itself". His contemporary rallied with "Fear is a reaction, courage is a decision.". So choose the road of the HEART.
  • D....Driving means getting out my license and checking the birthdate on it! If it says I am over 60. DO NOT GO ANYWHERE...unless absolutely necessary..so far nothing has been!.
  • 1...………………..Number one thing to remember? Everyone else. We are in this together.
  • 9... NINE hours of REST REST REST get plenty of sleep. I go down at 11 and get up at 8...9 hours of time away from all the talk,  media, and decisions of the day...this is my checklist for the pandemic. Bless you, all..

March 27 update

First Responders needed

What does that mean for me as someone with 30 years of experience as a caregiver and Hospice doulas?  Here I am in isolation and at high risk and cannot be on the front lines. So I have asked how can I give care from afar with the skills I have? I am a seamstress and have the tools and cloth, so masks it is. I will be able to fill a need in a way that will keep myself and others safer and connected. I urge you to find a way to be a "first responder" in your own way to someone in need. Walk a dog, go to store, mail a package, pay a bill, set up skype on a computer for someone in higher-risk or ill.


March 30,   update

"Physical" Distancing

I want to discuss this phrase used to describe a safety measure to keep the virus from reaching one's personal space......I want to say that is the safe distance......and it is a physical one......we can keep our social contacts in so many ways in this age of technology. There is no need to have a social distance. A social, loving contact with each other will ease the stress of not knowing how we are all coping in this time of isolation. This stress from not knowing, being imposed on us is far more dangerous than the physical one. Stress can cause other forms of illness and general feelings of "unwellness". Keep in touch for the wellbeing of others and for yourself. And I suggest you even go a step further and take this time you have to be creative in how you reach out and express yourself.

Blow a kiss from your phone, learn to skype and go crazy in a costume with the grandkids, put a bow on the meals you deliver, include the pets people may be missing. I know you can find ways to keep the feeling of that distance becoming as close and loving as possible.

Practice Social Closeness

April 1  final update


Today begins the 30 day extended stay at home request by the federal govt or "Lockdown". I am rather surprised that I will be posting now about this pandemic in my "Laughter" post because what I am about to tell you is no laughing matter. A pastor in Florida held Sunday morning services for a 500  person congregation. Families during the service practiced distancing from other families. The curious statement broadcasted on the news was about his argument that this new virus was being "overblown". Like the flu, it already kills thousands a year!  So I went to the CDC for the facts and I was "blown over."

Here they are for  Oct 2019- Mar 2020 9 month season
[based on reports and projections of past seasons of 8.5% of population, 27million}

reported cases of illness  28-54,000,000
medical visits to doctors  18-26,000,000
hospitalizations              400-730,000
deaths from the flu             24,000-62,000

This is what the statistics can be for the flu and also how it impacts the healthcare system on top of the current needs for the pandemic with Covid-19. This is with no flu "stay at home" in the general population other than taking sick leave from work after you get the flu, getting the flu shot yearly, as many do, not all.

Now look at the figure for hospitalizations for the flu and imagine them being similar for Covid-19 without lockdown. Add this number to the hospitals dealing with the flu already.  Now, look next to the death rate for the flu. This is where the big awakening needs to be impressed upon us all. The death percentage is 12 times (the update is 40 times) that of the flu. So the number without a lockdown, distancing, business shut down, hygiene practices, and law enforcement, statistics could be, not 24,000-64,000 as for the flu,  the estimates could skyrocket to

288,000-744,000 DEATHS for Covid-19.

We are at 3500 deaths today, (mid-March prior to lockdown 95, April 20 update with three weeks lockdown is 43,000) the 9/11 figure, since the January record keeping. Two weeks into the stay at home orders for high case areas. Projections are still being calculated at 1-200,000 deaths in the US before this disease runs its course. This is 10-20% of a possible figure above with us following faithfully the lockdowns and safety measures asked of us all.  We are 3 months into possibly 12-18 season till the vaccine is available. So the estimates of 100-200,000 deaths are possible..And so clearly this is NOT THE FLU.

Be careful with your life and others, you are all precious.