FURLOUGHED: Week One

I promised myself I wouldn’t do this: use my blog site as a personal diary.

But current events are just so much crazier than anything I could come up with in my own imagination.

Welcome to 2020, the year the entire world changed.

Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, 2020 had started out rough for me.  A close family member had suffered a ruptured appendix, requiring emergency surgery, hospital visits, doctor’s visits, and a loooong recovery period.

But at least that happened early in the year; now, hospitals all over the world are inundated with COVID-19 patients.  Sure, they still would do the emergency appendectomy, but visitors are no longer allowed – and what surgical patient wants to be alone in the hospital surrounded by contagious, critical virus sufferers?  What family member wants to be forced to sit at home, not knowing how well their loved one is being cared for?

Anyway.

For the first time in my life, I have spent a week among the healthy, but unemployed.  Technically, I’m furloughed from my job (no work-at-home options available), but I do qualify for unemployment.  While there were numerous complaints that the New York State unemployment site was constantly crashing due to the overwhelming number of new applications, I was fortunate in that I already had a New York State identification number, having opted to renew my driver’s license and car registration online recently.  The ID number got me into the state’s computer system fairly seamlessly, and the application was easy – especially since the very first question was whether or not my unemployment had been caused by the recent COVID-19 outbreak.

Now, I just wait for the benefits to start.  Unlike so many others who are forced to live paycheck-to-paycheck, I am usually able to keep a small amount aside for emergencies such as this, and my monthly bills are current through the month of April.  We are well stocked with groceries and essential supplies.  My car has  a full tank of gas (which I won’t need since I no longer leave the house except for my Remicade infusion every 8 weeks).

The first couple of days, I truly enjoyed just sitting around, knowing there was nowhere I had to be.  A week later, I’m still enjoying just sitting around, knowing I have nowhere I need to be.  (Betcha thought I’d claim boredom.)

I’ve again taken up baking.  No need to worry about someone in the store’s bakery department preparing cupcakes and frosting while in the initial contagious stages of COVID-19 infection.

It may well come to pass that I won’t want to return to work once I am allowed to do so.

My only real complaint is that I can’t go out to do photography.  Not that I’m prevented from doing so, and I know many people who still do just that, but I’m one of those who is absolutely terrified of exposure to the virus through random contact with others.  I once had bronchitis, and the thought of developing pneumonia necessitating a ventilator is too upsetting to allow me to comfortably leave my home and yard.  I’ve heard the local parks are overcrowded because people can’t go anywhere else.  It’s hard to social distance in a crowd.

So, I take pictures inside my home or in my own backyard:

At least the last few days have been mild; I was able to go outside without a hat and gloves, making the camera so much easier to handle.

I did leave the house for my Remicade infusion yesterday, and I gotta tell you – it was really weird.  Only minimal traffic, a handful of cars in the medical center’s parking lot, one receptionist (who wore a mask and gloves, and whose desk was surrounded by yellow caution tape so as to keep patients back the required distance), only 2 infusion nurses on staff (when usually there are 5 or 6), and those nurses were gloved and masked.  The “big room” (with 6 closely spaced recliners) was not being used, and the one or two patients being treated were placed into separate, private cubicles (which was fine with me, ’cause I could watch TV without worrying about bothering another patient).

It used to always be my habit to stop on the way home from my infusion and treat myself to Burger King or takeout.  Not anymore.  Even though I know every step is being taken to protect both the workers and the customers, and even though I’ve been going to the same pizza/sub shop and the same Burger King location for years, I can’t bring myself to trust food made by someone other than me.  So, this week my “infusion treat” turned out to be a sandwich made at home.  Best sandwich ever!

Yep, it’s a new norm.

My thoughts and wishes for all of you who are also under lockdown.  May lockdown be the worst of our problems.

Stay healthy and safe, everyone.

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I love to hear from my readers. You may comment on this post, comment on my Facebook or Twitter pages, or email me at cordeliasmom2012@yahoo.com
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Images by Cordelia’s Mom/TeddyRosalieStudio

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36 Responses to FURLOUGHED: Week One

  1. ladyryl says:

    Glad to hear you are staying safe and renewing your interest in baking.
    I know you can’t get out far to do you photos, sometimes the challenges of doing it close to home can create some amazing results.

    Like

  2. Carol says:

    I wonder, when all of this is over, will the masses race out into the world shouting “at last I’m free!” Or will we have learned to love the quiet of our homes and venture out less frequently.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Tippy Gnu says:

    Probably best to stay safe in your home, in your case. Take care.

    Like

  4. Marc Beebe says:

    Not much change here, as I don’t go out much anyway. Fortunately I have a lot of land around me and if it weren’t buried under snowpack as hard as concrete I could enjoy it more.
    C’est la vie.

    Like

  5. Although life hasn’t really changed a lot, it FEELS different and not in a good way.

    Like

  6. Karen J says:

    Glad to hear you’re dealing well, CM!
    I’m staying in, too, except for fresh food groceries.
    And Man! do I miss everyday contact – hugs and handshakes and pats on the back.

    Like

  7. nickc324 says:

    Thanks for posting this and sharing your thought. I like the photos, too! Stay safe!

    Like

  8. Ahh…love all the pics, CM. You’re creating a photo epic-demic! LOL! It’s the 12th day of the shutdown here and I think I’m turning into a zombie. Also, I’m spending more time in the kitchen. My girls are always hungry. I can’t wait for them to go back to school. Stay safe and well, my friend.
    ❤⃛(*ૂ❛ัᴗ❛ั*ૂ)

    Like

  9. AmyRose🌹 says:

    Good to know you are safe and healthy, CM. I’m still going out in the parks ever watchful for anyone who may come too close. One day while crossing a wooden bridge, three teenage boys were about to come racing across on their bikes. I turned around and literally held up my hand and said, “You will not cross until I am off this bridge!” They listened. That bridge was not wide enough to maintain the 6 feet distance.
    Not sure how this is going to play out and I try not to think about it. All I know life as we knew it to be, no longer is. Stay safe and stay happy!! xo

    Like

    • Ha. When I went for my infusion, another patient came into the waiting room and sat about 4 seats away from me. Well over 6 feet apart, but it still made me nervous so I got up and moved. The patient, a gentleman about my age, laughed and asked me if I thought he was contagious, which led into a general conversation of how much the world has changed in just a few short weeks. It was the first conversation I’ve had with anyone other than my hubby and Puppy Cody since the middle of March, and I must say it felt go to talk to another human being.

      Liked by 1 person

      • AmyRose🌹 says:

        I’m happy for you that you got to have a “real” conversation, CM. When this nightmare is over, I think all of us are going to cherish human contact and conversation a heck of a lot more then we did.

        Liked by 1 person

  10. Trent Lewin says:

    It’s a new normal, CM. Glad you’re baking… show us some shots of what you put together! That would be cheery. We still go outside, on the roads and sidewalks. When people are walking towards you, they cross the street (or you do). It’s surreal and weird. I just make sure to say hi to people from afar. Waiting for warmer weather, to get outside more. It is spring. I think it’s still spring. Spring – we need you!

    Like

    • This is a perfect time for all the science fiction writers, being as everything is so strange. As for food shots, I’ll do my best, but historically while my food tastes good, it doesn’t photograph well.

      It’s quite mild here today, although it did rain this morning and is supposed to get rather stormy this afternoon. But the birds are singing, and building nests, so spring is, in fact, coming.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. markbialczak says:

    We will get through this, CM. Be well, be safe.

    Like

  12. Dan Antion says:

    I’m glad to hear that you’re doing well. I hope this is relatively short-duration, but these certainly are strange days. Take care.

    Like

  13. joey says:

    I am glad you won’t be economically distressed. I am super happy you’re baking 🙂 I have never had any pulmonary issues, ever, so this sick has been super scary to me – and makes me worry terrible about my loved ones with asthma, etc.

    Like

    • We’re all worried. I have many relatives with co-morbidity issues, never mind that many of us are over 65. I think I finally talked hubby into taking a leave from work until this is all over; he doesn’t need the continued exposure, nor do we want to risk him bringing COVID home to me.

      Liked by 1 person

  14. Pingback: FURLOUGHED: Week Two | Cordelia's Mom, Still

  15. Your photos are lovely! I will probably take my camera out of its hiding spot and do nature photos because spring is so pretty in NC. I won’t be able to post process for a while, as the floors are still a hot mess, and my photo computer is packed away because of that, but I can still shoot and post-process later.

    Like

    • Aw, I love compliments on my photos. Photography has become my new passion. (Of course, it’s a little difficult right now what with the lockdown, but I’m definitely looking at the inside of my own house in a new way.)

      Like

  16. Pingback: FURLOUGHED: What Week Is It Anyway? | Cordelia's Mom, Still

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