Updated: Apr 30, 2020
This picture was made in an app but I like the way it looks and the message. I received a mask I'd ordered from Amazon nine weeks ago. That was way before people here were thinking much about the pandemic.
So, why was I thinking of buying a mask in February, you may ask? I had plans to go to a fabulous wedding in Chicago, leaving Grand Rapids on March tenth. I subscribe to the New York Times and I'd been reading about the Coronavirus showing up in the United States. It was early and the worst cases were in Washington state.
I read news articles constantly about this new virus that was killing people out West. Then one day I read that there were three cases in Chicago. The trip would mean that I'd be traveling on a train, staying in a hotel, going to restaruants, Ubering, and attending the wedding and reception. People were flying in from all over and it was already in Chicago.
The next morning there were nine cases in Chicago. I knew that I had to cancel an event that I'd been excited about for months. I was so disapointed and sad but I couldn't risk getting the virus. I am seventy-five and I have asthma. There was no way I could feel safe going to the wedding. I, obviously wouldn't have had my mask in time to go but I never dreamed it would be weeks before it would come.
When the pandemic really hit, with Detroit being one of the most affected areas in the United States, I felt guilty that I'd ordered a mask at all. So many people were need masks in their jobs. There was and is a shortaage for the people who are on the front lines in hospitals and nursing homes. Obvioulsy I should'nt have felt badly. I ordered mine before anyone thought about having one. Also, i didn't have mine. I must say that I did order other masks at the same time for my friend and myself to wear on the train. They were just flimsy, jersy cotton masks. Those did come after the wedding had already taken place. I was happy to have those even if they weren't the best. People hadn't thought of making their own at that time. Most people in Grand Rapids, still werent worrying about the pandemic. It was incredible how quickly it spread after that.
The Coronavirus pandemic spread like wildfire. Sparks from glowing embers in New York, Detroit and Washington State, began to spread all across much of America. In the beginning I was filled with anxiety. Looking at my phone, reading several newspapers, all day and late into the evening. I would check before gong to sleep and immediatly when I woke in the morning. I was so worried because my best friend was at the wedding. It was her son's wedding and she couldn't miss it. I was so worried about everyone attending the wedding as well. I was so afraid. I was eventually able to process my fears and come to understand that I can only take care of myself regardless of the situation. Everyone is responsible for themselves and not me.
So if you think wearing a mask is a good idea then be sure and do that. If you think it's not for you, that's for you to decide. We don't need to take sides in this time of great distress. Fighting amongst ourselves will not solve anything. Lessons will be learned during this time and they are for everyone to experience, good or bad. For me, I'm wearing mine when the time comes that I can leave my home. I pray that everyone is taking the best precutions during this pandemic. I don't want the virus to win and take many more people in the future.