Thank you!

I would like to thank the people who have offered comfort for my fear, fear related to Attila having to return to the workplace, being at high-risk-for-complications, and Covid-19. Your feedback and warmth are very much appreciated!

Fear is a healthy response to danger, the danger is real, I value my response because it facilitates staying alive. Fear keeps us sanitizing, keeping our distance from people, ensuring a healthy diet, regular exercise, getting enough sleep (working on that!), and taking the every day precautions needed to keep the virus out of our lives. When Attila was off work, these fears were fairly easily managed, we had a great deal of control and agency.

Fear is a little more challenging to deal with when Attila goes to work, where he does not control where he stands, where other people stand, who is in the washroom when he is in the washroom, who enters the building, if someone forgets to put their mask up after bringing it down after being in an isolated area, what kinds of risky behaviour (e.g. family parties, we see them all around us) other workers are participating in, well there are just too many variables that we either have no control over, or no knowledge of. So it is going to take more time to develop a workable system of denial about the risks, what kinds of information to push to the back on one’s mind and ignore for the sake of sanity, and what kinds of information require research, consideration, and even action. This will take some time, and is subject to constant ongoing change as the workplace evolves in various ways, e.g. a change in tasks and juxtapositions of fellow workers. This fear is a dance with danger; it isn’t comfortable, nor should it be. This is much more difficult for Attila than it is for me, in that it makes being in the workplace very high stress. My challenge is to deal with the feelings of helplessness that accompany the fear, and as I watch Attila look increasingly pinched and tired with each passing day.

Attila’s workplace is certainly not as high risk an environment as a long-term care home, but it is as high risk as some of the manufacturing plants that have experienced outbreaks and shut downs. His employers have now responded to the health threats with altered and safer work stations, temperature and symptom monitoring, mandatory masks supplied by the company, a lot of hand cleaning stations, and other measures. Although this is reassuring, and one cannot imagine what further precautions they might take, it is not a guarantee against contracting the virus from an infected individual, in the enclosed spaces where they all work.

It is my opinion that a way to reduce the death rate (per capita) in Canada is for the federal government to offer the option of early retirement with full pension to individuals who have comorbidities that put them in danger for complications, and are 60 or over. This group, between 60 and 65, with comorbidities, has to work to pay the bills and survive. This group is not receiving the protective measures that I think are necessary for their particular situation. This would free jobs for younger people who feel they are facing little to no risk. Companies need the support of the federal government to offer such a choice to this compromised older group of employees. (I have suggested this to our Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau.)

Of course, the focus on the tragic profit based, long-term care home situation is paramount, but the additional measure I suggest would allow many vulnerable people to remove themselves from the workplace, stay out of harms way, flatten the curve, and reduce the death rate per capita for Covid-19.

The New England Journal of Medicine has an interesting opinion piece on this issue:

https://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMp2013413?query=recirc_mostViewed_railB_article

Worldly

Weather

19°C
Date: 10:00 AM EDT Thursday 4 June 2020
Condition: Mainly Sunny
Pressure: 100.9 kPa
Tendency: Rising
Temperature: 18.9°C
Dew point: 15.0°C
Humidity: 78%
Wind: SW 13 km/h
Visibility: 24 km

Quote

“It is only prudent never to place complete confidence in that by which we have even once been deceived.”
Rene Descartes
1596 – 1650

8 Comments

  1. Thanks Joan! This coronavirus is causing all sorts of havoc for people. Aging is challenging at the best of times, for most people, but the present health threat sure intensifies the negative aspects.
    Stay safe dear friend! Hugs!

  2. Sandy

    I wish you and Attila could retire too. I like your idea of offering early retirement to people 60+ with health risks. They should also give them extra retirement money to make up for the years of lost income.

    Thinking of you both, my friend. ((Hugs))

  3. Sandy, it would make sense to offer early retirement to vulnerable people, if the rhetoric about saving lives has any real meaning. It does make me wonder that this cohort of risk is completely ignored in the pandemic fiscal policies here in Canada. We shall do our best to survive, given that we are pretty much on our own with this issue.
    Thank youf or your kind thoughts, thinking of you too, stay safe my friend. ((Hugs))

  4. Stubblejumpers Cafe

    I’ve noticed all too many people who aren’t being careful, because it inconveniences them. They haven’t seen someone they know terribly ill or die from the Covid19, so they aren’t taking it seriously. They’ll cross provincial boundaries although they’ve been asked not to, stay with elderly relatives, and carry on their normal socializing with friends. Human nature sometimes makes me sad. I hope Attila will be fine and that all the worry will, in the end, have been for naught. But right now, I wish more people would act like they have more than one worry in the world — and that’s the inconvenience they have to put up with. -Kate

  5. Kate, I’ve noticed the same thing around here, everyone seems to think the whole virus issue can’t affect the area. It is very concerning, and I hope they get away with it! But I fear they will not. I agree, sometimes human nature makes me sad too. Thank you for the good wishes for Attila, he does his best.
    I actually hope all the people who think it is no big deal are actually right about that! It is tempting sometimes, to relax our vigilance and follow along after the rest of the population, carrying on as if it could possibly happen here, to us. But it could, Attila’s step-father’s niece died of Covid-19, on a cruise ship, she had a lung issue that hadn’t slowed her down at all, until it did.
    Stay safe dear friend!

  6. I totally hear you about being afraid for hubby going out into the world with this virus about. Yesterday, Paul had an appointment with a friend to meet him at the harbor so he could advise him on how to put a pull-line into the cove for his small rowboat and theyt were together there for about 90 minutes. I had told Paul “make sure Andrew wears a mask!!!” Of course, after he got home and I asked about it, he said that no, A. was not wearing a mask but “the other guy (????) was.” I am furious with Paul for not insisting Andrew, as well as ANYONE who is close to him or talking with him, wear a damn mask. It makes my blood boil!

  7. Bex, I totally hear you, and my blood would be boiling as well. Friends wear masks in my opinion.

    I feel for Paul, it is a tough go to fight other people’s negligence, when you know they have access to all the information, and yet pay no attention to it. I think some people just can’t believe it is a crisis, because the world looks normal, people you see look normal, and they want so badly for everything to be the way it was.

    Dr. John Campbell (youtube, June 2, 2020) reviewed a study recently that indicated that wearing a mask provides some protection from the virus, as wearing a mask you have a 3% chance of contracting the virus, without a mask 17% chance, so there is some benefit. I notice that people who don’t wear masks are quite aggressive about acting as if there is no virus, getting too close to others who do wear masks, even though wearing a mask is a clear message to keep your distance.

    Maybe you could make a few extra masks for Paul to carry in the truck, so that he can offer one to anyone who wants to interact with him.

    Hopefully they were all out of doors, because that does lower the risk, but really that Andrew should have known enough to wear a mask!

    I have to admit that after one neighbour I met on a walk came too close to me, I failed to move away quickly enough, and luckily I haven’t been sick, and that was weeks ago. But the incident alerted me to how difficult it is to resist being pleasant and going along with another persons bad decision, that they regard as perfectly harmless. I now back away, move into people’s front yards, into a ditch, whatever it takes when someone comes closer than 3 meters to me, 2 meters isn’t enough in my opinion, and 3 meters might not be enough but it is difficult to manage more in public places like a sidewalk.

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