Loathe in the Time of Covid

Last night, Jon and I were able to receive our second dose of the Covid vaccine!

Even though I’m thrilled to be vaccinated and there’s a small relief in being able to provide an added layer of protection for our immunocompromised son, it still feels hard to celebrate because I don’t anticipate our lives changing all that much anytime soon. Because children can’t get the vaccine yet and our son is immunosuppressed, we still have to stay in a pretty serious lockdown in order to keep him safe. But, at least now on the rare occasion that we do have to go somewhere, I’m less likely to contract and pass it on to him, which is definitely something I’m grateful for and do not take lightly.

During the last year, I’ve found it incredibly difficult to handle the overly dramatic people who feel their liberties are being taken away simply because they’re asked to wear a mask in a grocery store both for their safety and the safety of others. I know living with an immunocompromised child is not a lifestyle everyone is used to, but speaking as someone who has had to wear masks, carry hand sanitizer, and sterilize everything that comes into our house for the last seven years, I think some people need to suck it the fuck up.

It really doesn’t need to be this hard.

However, the big thing I’ve realized over the last year is that you can’t force people to give a shit about the welfare of others. Even in my own community (which loves to masquerade as a caring, hippie granola town), I’ve all too often seen the attitude of “Well I’m fine, so why would I minorly inconvenience myself in any way to help keep others safe?”

Me to those people:

It’s hard to explain to my son why on Halloween there were unmasked kids trick or treating door to door while he cried because he hasn’t been able to hug his grandma for a year. The argument, “kids need to be kids,” starts to sound a little worse when you realize that what they’re actually saying is, “my kids need to be kids while yours either suffers in isolation or dies.” Because honestly, if the US had taken this more seriously, not politicized masks, not perpetuated bullshit conspiracy theories, and actually taken five seconds to have compassion for others, we could be like New Zealand where life gets to look mostly like it did before Covid. But America is determined to be the shit show it has always been, so here we are.

And in Arizona, the Florida of the southwest, Governor Doug Ducey lifted all occupancy restrictions on restaurants, gyms, and other businesses while insisting schools go back in person because apparently he thinks our infection rates aren’t high enough.

We were given an apocalyptic scenario in which all we had to do was stay home, watch Netflix, and wear a fucking mask, and we couldn’t handle that. We are absolutely not ready for zombies or aliens, and any forthcoming apocalypse movie now needs to include people insisting that the disaster is a “liberal hoax” while a zombie eats their faces. Anything less than that will just feel too unrealistic, even for Hollywood.

I feel like I want to end this post on a humorous note, but I just can’t. 500,000 Americans are dead from Covid and a lot of those could be avoided had people simply not been such huge assholes about it. At this point, if you don’t know someone who has either died from Covid, consider yourself extremely lucky–not all of us are afforded that luxury.

Get vaccinated as soon as you can, continue to physically distance yourself from others, and wear your fucking mask.

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