Shelter at Home Week 8: Closer to Home

My next door to next door neighbor here in Sonoma County has been hospitalized with Covid19. He is in his 40’s, thin, but with diabetes. He’s been there for five nights. I’ve been indoors so much that I didn’t even know until yesterday when I stepped out front for a minute. His wife was coming back from dumping her garbage in the same bin my family uses.
You’re probably picturing a typical suburban neighborhood. These are connected townhouses, and our doors are thirty feet apart at most. I felt both heartbroken for them (she’s getting tested today) and a little scared for us. There’s only one parking space between our cars. We’ve been friendly neighbors for 16 years.
A sweet local Facebook friend and her husband also have it. They are able to check their oxygen levels at home, and although they’ve had fevers and been miserable for many days, they’ve not been hospitalized that I know of. Their baby had it, too, but seems better.

Before I found all that out, the big news this week was that my niece postponed her August wedding for a whole year. It’s still big news. It’s just surreal.

At the same time, I’m seeing a crack in people’s ability to distance. The county has opened parks for those who can walk or bike there, but of course people still drove to the best parks and parked on nearby streets, as the parking lots are blocked. I unfollowed a Facebook friend because I just don’t want to see it. An hour or so after I did that, my own parents called and said they heard that same park was open and they were going! They didn’t end up getting out of the car, though.

Close friends of mine are going to each other’s houses and staying six feet apart in back yards. I just keep my mouth shut, but we’re not supposed to be doing that yet. It makes me feel like a bitch for not letting my teen do it, but really. Our county isn’t supposed to be driving except for grocery store trips and doctors appointments. The six feet thing is not even set in stone. We know that breath goes farther. We touch things without even realizing we’re doing it. I’m just feeling very disappointed in people and second-guessing myself. Am I taking it too far? Is this just the part of me that always feels like I have to punish myself?


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