busy in uncertain times

Well, we’ve just finished our second week of the new normal. Thankfully, we still have only one confirmed case in our city but I expect that to change in the coming weeks as all the vacationers have now come back from the March break trip they just ‘had to have’. I know not all of them are staying home either which is so incredibly selfish of them. I hope they all had wonderful holidays and that none of them end up killing someone in the process.

I’m still being considered critical services for my workplace and while I no longer have to go in every day, I still find myself at work once or twice a week. It’s a little bit strange walking into a building that normally has about 250-300 people and seeing maybe only 1 or 2 people. Our workplace has actually taken on a project to help our frontline healthcare workers and I’ve been quite involved with it. I’m not sure if I’ve ever described my work, but we are a large research laboratory. What that means, is that we have quite an inventory of chemicals. 

So, last week one of our managers showed the management team a recipe from the World Health Organization for hand sanitizer. He was thinking that perhaps we could make some for the building if we were to run out of our small supply. One of our other managers thought it might be even more beneficial if we could make it for our local hospital if they needed it. He reached out to our hospital and was informed that they had a critical shortage.

I was then contacted by my director because I control the chemical inventory. I was asked to see if it was doable to make a batch to donate to our hospital. I found out that we indeed had all of the materials required and in less than 24 hours and with a group of 5 employees we had successfully produced 160 litres. From there the project kind of exploded. We made a second batch which brought our total up to 350 litres. So far we’ve been able to donate to our local hospital, a major health centre, our local hospice, food banks, Women in Crisis, March of Dimes, men’s shelter and a few other local agencies. So far we’ve also reached out to our local paramedics and we’ve been contacted by a Health Network that involves 3 hospitals in our district. We will be donating to all of those areas and I suspect many more. I’ve placed orders for additional chemicals and our goal is to have enough supplies to make another 1000 litres if necessary. 

It feels good to be able to help in a time of such uncertainty and to hear that people had tears in their eyes–because they weren’t sure if they would ever be able to get more–when my director delivered the jugs makes it all worthwhile. We’ve also done an inventory of our facility and we have lab coats, a small supply of half-face respirators, face shields and enough nitrile gloves to survive a zombie apocalypse if/when any of those agencies need any of those supplies.

The only negative…if that even seems possible…is that it made the news and now complete strangers have been calling and emailing me about all of this. I find it a bit overwhelming because I’ve spent the majority of my life trying to remain invisible. I also find it a bit threatening over how easy it is for people to find me if they really want to. It’s definitely adding to my anxiety.

Anyways, work is definitely keeping me busy and I haven’t really had too much time to notice the isolation that others may be experiencing. 

M is now staying at dad’s and isn’t even coming on weekends for the next few weeks. I miss him but it’s probably best for everyone to just stay where they are at the moment. Hopefully we aren’t in lockdown for too long but it’s hard to say considering the cases are rising drastically each day in my province. 

Like almost everyone else, my therapy has also been somewhat interrupted. We are trying VSee messenger and we’ve had two sessions so far. There is the option to either do video chats or just messenger chats. For now I’ve opted out of the video chats and phone calls. I pretty much hate the phone and unless T points the screen at his socks, I have no idea what I’d look at. :/ The first chat seemed to go well but the second felt really strange. I feel like such a whiny baby complaining since some people don’t even get as much as I do, but I just really miss sharing space with T. Phone, video and messenger just can’t replace that little room where it’s just him and me. I might knock it back to once a week if we’re going to continue on this way because I just feel so disconnected from him that it feels like I’m messaging with some robot that lives inside of my computer. He did tell me to write or text whenever I needed to and while I’ve thought about it a million times, I just haven’t been able to. Not quite sure what that’s all about.

I still haven’t been sleeping well either. Last time I saw T he showed me some meditation apps and I’ve been trying to use them before bed, but I still keep waking up in the middle of the night with this deep aching sense of dread intermingled with nightmares. I’ve basically just given up trying to sleep in the dark and have resorted to a nightlight each night. 

There is also a bit of anxiety over my medications, particularly my hydroxychloroquine. Because of the stupid orange melon-head south of us blabbing his big mouth about it being the miracle cure for coronavirus I’ve been watching in horror as people who need it, can’t get it. I read one article about a woman in California who recieved a letter telling her that she would no longer be getting her medication because it was all being diverted to critically I’ll patients. I the letter they actually had the nerve to thank her for her sacrifice. Are you effing kidding me? I’m fairly certain  that woman didn’t agree to sacrifice herself over something that hasn’t even been proven. I’ve spoken to my pharmacist because I was starting to panic and he told me he’d put a month aside for me which alleviated some of the concern. I’m glad I did because yesterday I read an article where Canadian doctors are prescribing it for family and friends and are ordering ‘in office’ supplies so that now there is starting to be a shortage here as well. Canada has also joined other nations and is doing trials on 4 different medications with hopes that one of them will help with coronavirus. One of the trial medications is hydroxychloroquine, so, if it works, it might be in even shorter supply. And while I know that would be a good thing, causing mass panic over a maybe is not.

I don’t think dodo bird Trump knows, or even cares, that hydroxychloroquine can help expand the life of a person with lupus by up to 50%. He is just another reason that proves politicians should keep their business out of medical decisions. I am supposed to have an appointment with my family doctor on Thursday so I will see what he thinks about all of this. I’m thinuking I might just need to get something to help me deal with the anxiety of my life instead of trying to live with it all the time.

Other than that I guess I’m hanging in there. Some days are definitely harder than others but for now I’m just trying to be thankful that we are fairly healthy for the moment.

2 thoughts on “busy in uncertain times

  1. I read a story on the CBC that provincial regulators are looking at disciplining health professionals who are misusing drugs like Plaquenil, and I got a joint email from the BC Colleges of Physicians, Nurses, and Pharmacists, saying that doctors and nurse practitioners should not be prescribing Plaquenil for COVID-19, and pharmacists should not be filling it. Hopefully it won’t get as bad as in crazy pumpkin world.

    Liked by 2 people

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