In mid-March I wrote about the seriousness of COVID19. At that time, I didn’t know it would affect my family in a devastatingly personal way. I didn’t know that we’d be losing a loved one to COVID, and suffer so much more.
I was scared and hunkered down at the outset of March, a bit before life stopped and 2020 was canceled, while many were still traveling around on vacations.
It Was The Worst Of Times
My knowledge and forethought did little to prepare me, or my family for the losses. Here I said “It was the best of times. It was the worst of times.” Now it’s just the worst of times.
COVID And Our Loved Ones
COVID impacts us all with tremendous losses that are far too grave and widespread to detail here. Below are just a few of those my family has suffered.
Losing A Loved One To COVID
One family member is gone. One family friend is gone. Yes, two of our people are dead and will never come back.
COVID Rampant Danger
A robust young cousin suffered from COVID19. It was nothing like a flu. He appeared briefly at our Zoom Passover Seder and 15 days out looked like he had been hit by a truck.
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Praying For Our Health Warriors
A dear friend is a nurse on the front lines and shows up for work day after day in New York City while we worry that she will not be given personal protective equipment (PPE). She doesn’t care. She wants to save your life. I pray she will not lose hers.
9/11 x Ten = 30,000 Dead
This virus has killed more than 30,000 Americans. That is ten 9/11s in a few weeks, and the death count marches on. I can no longer bear to hear the word “hoax” in any context whatsoever.
The Opposite Of Preparedness
Why does a simple one-syllable word bring me to tears? It reminds me that the US was focused on “small government” and killed our Global Health Office. It reminds me that while other countries were fighting a battle against invisible terror orders of magnitude more threatening than 9/11, our government was still denying its existence. That is the opposite of preparedness.
This is the moment for patriotic Americans to make time for brave self-reflection. And for grieving. It is a time to understand what it is to be human and vulnerable. To look at what it means to be part of a family. And to look at how we can be better Americans.
A Time For Self-Reflection
This is the time for the patriotism that makes our country great. To look at our mistakes so that we can improve. A time to honor the fallen, so needlessly sacrificed to a terrifying enemy, as our country, ruled by disorganized dysfunction and chaos, allowed it to run rampant. We can do better than this.
Linda Faul says
So sorry for your recent losses. Praying that this virus will be defeated and gone soon. Stay safe.
Linda, thanks for your support. Stay safe.
Just a simple heartfelt message of condolence to you and your family! Thank you for continuing to provide us with delicious recipes all while you ride the waves of grief and loss. Wishing you family and friends the best. Sending you hugs and thanks Elana!
Michelle, sending hugs back to you and yours.
Sending condolences from British Columbia Canada
Having contracted Covid myself (luckily mild symptoms which seem to not want to go away) as well as 8 others in my close circle, I understand the pain. Three of the nine are finally home but struggling with continuing health issues etc…
Take care of yourself and those you love.
Nothing will change what has happened in the world and placing blame tends to be society’s way of dealing with the unknown.
We need to support everyone in these times.
Hugs to you and your family.
Lynn, thanks for checkin in from British Columbia Canada. I’m grateful for your warm wishes and so sorry to hear about you and your circle suffering from this. Take good care.
Alison Bacus says
Elana, my heart is breaking for you and your family. As yet I have no family or friends affected with the virus. I suppose it is just a matter of time. Like you I have MS and have been hunkered down here in Loveland for a month. Trying to eat well and not over indulge. Turning to your Paleo Cooking bible for tips and suggestions I am reminded how you help so many people every day try to stay healthy. Please know all your friends and admirers are thinking of you and sending thousands of large virtual hugs your way. Stay strong!
Alison, you are so sweet. I appreciate all of your words but especially “sending thousands of large virtual hugs” what a tremendous image of inspiration. Thanks for being you :-)
Andrea Munson says
Is am so very sorry to hear of your family’s losses. Words cannot describe my feelings about the incompetent response of our government and the misinformed actions of some of our people.
I have seen your strength and capabilities through your amazing work here and I believe in your capacity to make your way through the grief at your own sacred pace.
I have a deep appreciation for your work and your health status and truly admire everything you put out in the world. You have made my life better with your recipes and your writing. I wish you comfort, ease and relief in the coming days, weeks and months.
With love to you and your family and whole network of connections,
Andrea, thanks for your wonderfully supportive, thoughtful, and kind words. Sending love to you and yours.
I am so sorry for your loss and I thank you for sharing yourself and your story with all of us.
We all mourn those who have been lost and pray for strength to endure, to be mindful and to be compassionate to all even as we struggle to comprehend selfishness, greed and hostility. We look for the beauty in humanity, for simple acts of kindness and for those in healthcare, food production, sanitation, grocery clerks and countless others.
I wish to take this time to thank you personally for your wonderful recipes and commentary that have made me feel not so alone in my health struggles. I can’t tell you what it means to have absolute faith that a recipe will not fail or waste ingredients.
Leasa, what a tremendous comment. Thanks for your gratitude and for being on this healing path with me.
I’m so sorry for your losses. I live in Connecticut, just outside of New York. The news of each death is more devastating than the last. It feels like a war zone. These are the worst of times. As said before, we need to depoliticize and unite our efforts to control the virus. Please stay healthy. Karen
Karen, thanks so much for your kind words. Stay safe.
Travelyn Perumal-Govender says
Hello Elana. So sorry for your losses. May the Lord give you and your family comfort and courage at this trying time. It is indeed a time of emotional confusion and a feeling of helplessness but hopefully it also becomes a time for reflection and change. What a huge price to pay….. Stay strong. Travelyn. South Africa
Travelyn, such a huge price to pay. Thanks so much for your condolences.
Dona Becker says
I am so sorry for the tragedies that you and your family are going through and I pray that your cousin will fully recover. May God give you all comfort during this horrible time. This is such a hard time for everyone. I’m trying to take care of my mother and mother-in-law. They are both isolating so I run errands for them and order things online for them. Since we’ve never been through a pandemic, all of us are learning as we go. I pray for our leaders because they are making decisions that none of us have ever made and, please, God, never will have to make again.
With all due respect and love and kindness to you, just to give you more info in case you’ve never heard this, I have to say that the hoax comment by President Trump has been disproven. He did not call the virus a hoax, just that what the Democrats were going to do with it as it pertained to him would be their next hoax on the American people. https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/trump-coronavirus-rally-remark/.
Regarding preparedness, the fact that it was a lie that the “Global Health Office was killed” never got top billing on the networks. But it was fact-checked by the Washington Post: “…the Post published its fact-check on the viral tweet, revealing that it was clearly false. The claim, Kessler explains, relies on outdated reports from 2018 about a potential reduction in funding for the Global Health Security Agenda (GHSA) that never actually happened — and even failed to get the key figures from those outdated reports correct. To make matters worse for Murphy et al, the Trump administration’s 2021 budget request “called for an increase in the annual appropriation for global public health protection,” Kessler notes. https://www.dailywire.com/news/no-viral-tweet-by-democrat-senator-about-trump-pandemic-programs-finally-gets-fact-checked
If anything, some media and politicians made the results of the virus worse. On Jan. 31, President Trump closed travel from China and declared the virus a U.S. public health emergency so the media and Democrats mocked him. Because of their hatred for President Trump and their goal to go against him at every turn, they gave people horrible advice. Starting January 31, Vox said the virus wouldn’t be a big deal. The Washington Post said how irrational it was to fear the virus. The New York Times mocked the fact of how quickly the virus was spreading and the fear that it induced. On February 9th, in an attempt to imply how stupid President Trump was, the NYC Health Commissioner reminded New Yorkers to attend the Lunar New Year parade in Chinatown and not to change any of their plans. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z4EuyevbaXM. As we know that didn’t turn out well for New Yorkers.
Then there is this video showing officials telling people to go get into crowded public places. https://www.newsbusters.org/blogs/nb/curtis-houck/2020/03/27/watch-tucker-do-work-cnn-wont-do-showing-nyc-officials-dismissing
On Feb. 24th, Nancy Pelosi walked arm-in-arm down the streets of Chinatown in San Francisco “trying to get the word out that shoppers are safe.” https://sanfrancisco.cbslocal.com/2020/02/24/coronavirus-speaker-house-nancy-pelosi-tours-san-franciscos-chinatown/ I agree that there was no reason to avoid Chinatown except for the fact that people would be congregating together and passing the virus around if someone there had it. Four cases had already been reported in San Francisco on February 2. https://www.abc10.com/article/news/local/california/coronavirus-9th-us-case/103-889f2a4f-f849-49b4-b8e7-cf48fac4516c
Past presidents share blame for our unpreparedness. The stockpile of masks had been neglected for years. Bloomberg News said, “The national stockpile used to be somewhat more robust. In 2006, Congress provided supplemental funds to add 104 million N95 masks and 52 million surgical masks in an effort to prepare for a flu pandemic. But after the H1N1 influenza outbreak in 2009, which triggered a nationwide shortage of masks and caused a 2- to 3-year backlog orders for the N95 variety, the stockpile distributed about three-quarters of its inventory and didn’t build back the supply.” https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-03-18/hospital-makes-face-masks-covid-19-shields-from-office-supplies
USA today said this, “Again according to NIH, the stockpile’s resources were also used during hurricanes Alex, Irene, Isaac and Sandy. Flooding in 2010 in North Dakota also called for stockpile funds to be deployed. The 2014 outbreaks of the ebola virus and botulism, as well as the 2016 outbreak of the zika virus, continued to significantly tax the stockpile with no serious effort from the Obama administration to replenish the fund.” https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/factcheck/2020/04/03/fact-check-did-obama-administration-deplete-n-95-mask-stockpile/5114319002/
I believe the division in this country added to the chaos and confusion at the start of this virus. Impeachment proceedings that were known to be doomed before they started distracted government officials. As seen above, citizens were negatively impacted by the partisanship of our leaders. When leaders give citizens bad information to spite the president, it is the citizens who suffer. It’s horrible when leaders can’t put their differences aside to join together and protect their people. The greatest comfort for me is that God sees their dereliction and they will have to give an account to Him. May He care for and bless you and your family along with all of America during this pandemic.
Dona, stay safe.
Thank you for all that great information Dona. Blessings.
Emily K. says
Vicki Davidson says
Dear Elana, my sincere condolences on hearing the loss of your loved ones. Sending lots of love and positivity to you and “Kia Kaha” – in Maori this means “Stay Strong”.
I live in New Zealand and we have decided to strike back at this pandemic by staying at Alert 4, in effect our government sent NZ people home with this message: “To stay in the place that you will reside for the next month” only essential services are operating and schools and most businesses are closed – yes there has been huge financial loses to our country however we have placed value on the human life. Stay home, stay safe, save lives and be kind. Hygiene is paramount and respect each others space. I can truly say that I am very proud of the way most New Zealanders have dealt with this difficult time. We have a country of 4.8 million people and to date due to one month of Alert 4, these are our statistics.
As at 9.00 am, 19 April 2020
Total number of confirmed cases in New Zealand
Number of probable cases
Number of confirmed and probable cases
Number of cases currently in hospital
Number of recovered cases
Number of deaths (as at 1 pm 19 April)
Sadly we have lost human lives and like many around the world there needs to be a time to grieve our losses however this is also a time to be kind to ourselves and others.
My thoughts are with you all,
Vicki, your comment is so kind and inspiring. These are the words that move me so: “there has been huge financial loses to our country however we have placed value on the human life.” I’m so inspired by the way your country has handled this and contained some of the tragedy to date. Would be interested in hearing more from you. Is there adequate testing? What about PPE supply chain for healthcare workers? When was Alert 4 implemented? Thanks for being on this path of self-reflection and self-examination with me.
I too are from New Zealand. Sorry for your loss Elana. Loved your words. Stay safe & well.
Thanks so much for checking in from New Zealand Jan. Stay safe and take care.