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An update on our unwelcome guest

Support network has easily outweighed the social network

Here's just a little update on how things have been going since our house inadvertently welcomed the virus inside.

It's been two weeks since a pointed stick up the nose determined that we were among the growing numbers to become hosts to the world traveller nobody wants to see. One of our family members has rolled through the quarantine period, losing only 10 days of their social freedoms. The other, however, has so far lost her sense of smell and taste, been racked by aches and chills, lethargy and uncertainty. As of Sunday, the day her quarantine period was set to be over, there are still symptoms.  And despite recent negative tests (with another planned for early this week), the other  members of the household just assume they too have caught the virus, as trying to isolate a family of four into one house — if people are expected to eat, bathe, breathe and communicate — does have some cross-over points.

Physical symptoms of this virus are one thing — but mental health is also something that crosses the mind. It's not so much the worries of a global pandemic and whether or not wearing a mask can help or hurt the spread. Neither is it a constant worry about political over-reach and the debate over vaccine ingredients and mandated inoculations. No. When this virus is in your house, your mind has better things to worry about. For those in the house who don't yet have the virus, there is a daily worry that a new sniffle or tickle in the throat is the beginning of their own unknown journey. Did the orange I ate yesterday give off more smell than this one today? Does the coffee taste different? Is that a wheeze in my chest?

Who's going to look after us if I get sick too? What if my other child gets it? Those are the real worries, not politics, not misguided propaganda, just the care and comfort of loved ones.

Of course, on a daily basis there are those who tell us, "It's not so bad. It's only a cold. Or. "It's all part of a government plan. Don't buy into the fears."

Those people know nothing.  Even the ones who say they did contract the virus, but "it wasn't so bad..."  Well, good for you. Overall, when people die from a virus, it can be quite bad. That scenario plays out in your mind as well. 

And while some people take advantage of this wave of illness to preach their opinions and beliefs, it is the kind words and quiet actions of others who have truly helped my family during these last several days. In contrast to those who shout their opinions, endanger others and offer no redeeming value to a challenging situation, the support and encouragement we have received is a spotlight onto the many positives offered in humanity. A daily flow of friends have offered and provided much-needed assistance — simple check-in to see how we are, bringing food or supplies to our doorstep, dropping off a book or magazine, a shepherd's pie, fizzy, blue pop for the kids, Mother's Day items ... and even a little bottle of vodka, two lemons and a jar of honey to make a "COVID-tini."

It is honestly difficult to accept the kindness and charity. But we know that without it, we would be lost. Not just in our house, but in society in general. With all the bleak, contrasting and divisive views carried around the world by a viral blight far worse than coronavirus, it's wonderful to experience true social connections. That kindness within this strange and challenging ordeal will stay with us long after the headaches are gone and the smells come back. While there are still tests to take to confirm where the unwelcome viral guest has gone next, the support and kindness is something my little family has been truly blessed to welcome into our lives.