Underneath my yellow skin

Slip, slip, slipping away

So as the pandemic drags on and we all begin to eat each other, I’m slowly sliding into apathy. There’s still the fury, but it’s buried deep. It’s not sustainable to be continually angry; it just isn’t. I’m also finally over my migraine, knock wood, but I still feel the ramifications. Like total exhaustion. I’m also having a bit of a (wet) cough, so there’s that. I know I’m getting sick because I slept for nine hours the other night. That’s unheard of if I’m healthy. Ish. Healthy-ish. I’m never healthy.

I’m just blah. Everything is meh. What does any of it matter when America is doing her level best to drag everyone down? The one chance we had to avert a large-scale tragedy was to take drastic measures back in February/March. Because we didn’t do that, we’re playing catch-up with no hopes of actually doing it. Not only that, we’re actively working against eradicating the coronavirus. I’m talking about the collective we, by the way.

I’m also reading more people saying we have to ‘get back to normal’ and try to achieve herd immunity. That for most people who aren’t at risk who get it, it will be like getting a ‘bad cold’. First of all, herd immunity seems to be far-fetched as we don’t yet know that you can’t get the coronavirus again. In addition, in order to reach herd immunity, if, indeed it’s possible, that’s millions of death. The person writing about it was talking about schools (on the board of a school I think? Very distressing) and how reopening was the best because bullshit, lies, and bullshit. They said those at risk should stay home, of course, but kids were not carriers.

Which, I mean….Sigh. First of all, kids can get it. Kids can be asymptomatic carriers. That’s not even mentioning that we’re shoving all the teachers on the frontlines now, too (not that they already weren’t in the line of danger, what with school shootings being what they are), and this person was distressingly cavalier about it. Not even acknowledging that the road to herd immunity (if possible) was littered with at least a million deaths. As I said before, I know my life is expendable, but it’s sobering to hear it out loud and read it over and over again.

I know people with disabilities have to deal with this all the time. I’ve also had difficulties in being invisible for various reason, but I haven’t had to look square in the face that my death would be an acceptable trade-off to ‘normality’. By the way, that’s a lie. We are never going back to life before Covid-19. That’s not how these things work. Big events mark us and change us, which is just the way of life.

I never liked hearing, ‘well, it only affects old people’, and I really dislike it now. Yes, it’s partly because I’m someone with a shitty immune system and the idea that it’s ok to shut me up indefinitely so others can pretend to go about their normal lives, well, that just does not sit well with me. And, even if it were feasible, it’s still not going to change the fact that we haven’t even gotten out of our first wave yet, let alone a second.

My mother was talking to me the other night. She had talked to her brother-in-law who was a doctor (I have so many doctors in my family), and he said because of their ages, my parents should not come to America until there’s a vaccine. I hope that stops their endless speculation about coming back (I’ve had to push back on them so many times), but it was also depressing. Not the them visiting thing but the vaccine thing. Given how America is going right now, my options are to go out and deal with the fact that people around me don’t give a shit about me or barricade myself in the house and wait for a vaccine. Again, I know I’m very privileged even to have this option, but it’s still sobering.

I have to run to the pharmacy, and it shouldn’t be a big deal. It wouldn’t if one of the workers didn’t dangle her mask by her ear. In reality, it’s a very low-risk activity, and yet, my brain is overcome with anxiety whenever I have to do it. I don’t know what is real and what isn’t any longer. What I mean is that I don’t know where the line between reasonable and unreasonable is. I know the extremes. Holing up in my house without being around anyone else is about as safe as you can get. On the flip side, being in a crowded venue with no social distancing and no masks with everyone rubbing up against each other is pretty damn careless.

But where is the line between the two? So, two people chatting outside while masked and standing six feet apart. I’d consider that pretty low risk. Same two people inside, not masked, and not six feet apart–higher risk. Going swimming at a beach? We’re starting to get wobbly here. You can keep your distance on many beaches, but some, you can’t or won’t. Then again, the sun is supposedly a killer of the coronavirus, so yay? Swimming in a pool is dicey, too. It all boils down to how close you are to other people and the sanitary standards maintained, I guess.

I’ve been trying to boost myself up enough to go to the co-op, but I haven’t managed it yet. It’s partly because I’m just exhausted all the time, and the idea of forcing myself to drive 20 minutes is too much. More so, however, because I can’t get over the fear yet. Even thoughI know I’m overreacting (and I’m sure most people in my life think I am, too), I can’t get it out of my head that I could get this thing at any second. I mean, I know that theoretically I can die at any minute, but this is too much rubbing it in my face. It doesn’t help that it’s not a concrete thing I can see, touch, smell, taste, or hear.

I’m mad, but I’ve also given up. This is America. This is who we are. There are people who are resigned to dying from the Covid-19 because of how horrible their employers are being in the current situation. I’m fortunate in that I don’t have to deal with that, but I’m resigned to holing up in the house and feeling like a persona non grata. I don’t like it, but there’s not much I can do about it. Except try to go to the damn co-op. It’s not much, but it’s a start.

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