Does anyone else suffer a mild heart attack every time their phone rings in the nighttime. I don’t sleep well on a good day so when my phone rings at 11:41 pm it sort of sends me into a heart-racing, state of panic. And it wasn’t only my house phone. I also received a call on my work cell phone and an email….it felt like shit was about to get real.
The call was a message from my employer telling us that under the direction of our Deputy Minister no staff, regardless of location, was to come in to work today, Monday, March 16th, with the exception of those supporting critical services. We were then told to make arrangements to pick up any required material or equipment from the office at our convenience.
So this begs to answer. What jobs are considered critical services?
Well, apparently mine is. For the time being anyways.
What does this mean? It means that in a building of over 200, approximately 15 people will be reporting to work daily. And I am one of them. I’m not sure how to feel about it all.
We still don’t have any cases of COVID-19 in our community, but honestly it feel like it’s only a matter of time. It also feels quite surreal and eerily quiet. They’ve closed all schools and daycare for 3 weeks, all church services and masses have been cancelled, March break camps are cancelled, court has been cancelled except for emergencies, they’ve cancelled elective surgeries, the casinos and bingo halls are closed, all sporting clubs are cancelled for the rest of the year (and cancelling hockey in a Northern Ontario town like mine is like a world-ending event) and they’ve basically told everyone who works for the Government of Canada to either work from home, or if you can’t work from home, just stay home. The entire province of Ontario will be next, I’m sure of it.
I try to stay off of social media whenever possible because I find that it makes me anxious. Case in point, I read an article the other day where the medical officer in France is telling people not to take anti-inflammatory medications to fight the fever associated with the virus because it can make the symptoms worse. Here in Canada, the Public Health Agency is telling Canadians to have ibuprofen on-hand for fever and body aches. So which is it? Misinformation like this, especially to someone who needs to take prescription strength NSAIDs daily to stave off joint pain from lupus, doesn’t bring much calm in the circumstances. I think I’ll risk it and continue with my current meds because I still need to be able to get out of bed and come to work…at least for now.
These times are uncertain. And while I’m not overly concerned about catching the virus, I’m having a hard time with the changes and having to alter things on the fly. I remember once upon a time, T told me that any change in my routine, for me, is catastrophic! I laughed at the time because I couldn’t see it but over the last few days, I realize he was right. Routine is, and has always been, vitally important for me.
On a good note, I did talk to T about what is going happen in the coming weeks. He said he’s not worried and we’ll figure it out…one day at a time. He also told me he has no plans to cancel any sessions unless it’s absolutely necessary. So at least I have that consistency for now. But, just in case it changes, I’m going to have to work on my telephone skills. Either way, it feels hard to feel safe in a world like this. A world filled with so much uncertainty and panic and misinformation.
Keep well my friends…keep well.