Corona Memoires: You Are Alone

Tuesday 14 April 202004:45 pm

Isolation is no stranger to me.

Soon after turning 30, I was diagnosed with Thyroid Cancer.
Surgery was scheduled soon after and the treatment post surgery involved isolation for 3 days in a hospital room after being administered the only tried and tested treatment for decades: a dose of radioactive iodine.
I was only allowed one visitor at a time and they had to keep six feet away from me .
The same treatment with the same exact protocol was administered a year later as I had some traces of the cancer left .  
Fast forward to years later, we all find ourselves using words like social distancing as a pandemic has ravaged our world.
A month into a state mandated lock down, I wonder like most of you, when will this end?  
As for the future, I am like you all dear readers. I wish that I had a crystal ball. I have mentally written off the months of April and May. Maybe June will mean less restrictions. Maybe it won’t
Will we ever walk out of our homes without fear? Will restaurants reopen? Will our lives go back to the old normal lives that we lead pre-corona?
There is no simple yes or no answer. When I was in isolation, I made it a point to forget the outside world. I remembered happy moments and willed myself to persevere without tears. I was scared. Doctors and nurses came in and out at odd times so continuous sleep was a luxury . My vitals had to be taken every few hours. I promised myself that if I made it through that I would give back.
I moved to NYC for good a few years later as I felt safer in NYC . My doctors were here, a few blocks away. I volunteered in a hospital for many years and advocated for patients who were diagnosed with head and neck cancers.
Now those very doctors are all on the front lines of this pandemic. They are the ones that are afraid. They are performing their jobs valiantly at great cost to their health and safety .
I am safely ensconced in my home. I have a routine. I go out and walk. I eat. I watch Netflix. I try to imagine a post-corona world: what will it be like?
I threw away all my makeup today. Will I regret this? All those Fenty and Nars blushes were gathering dust. I once hastily embellished my eyes and my cheeks with them. There will be a time for new makeup to be purchased.
 I threw away all my makeup today. Will I regret this? All those Fenty and Nars blushes were gathering dust. I once hastily embellished my eyes and my cheeks with them. There will be a time for new makeup to be purchased
Anxiety and worry gnaw at me.
If I forget my gloves when I walk out of my home I force myself to go back. Gloves will save me. They will keep the virus at bay. I wash my hands. I have cleaned every surface in my flat. I constantly spray every door handle I can find.
As for the future, I am like you all dear readers. I wish that I had a crystal ball. I have mentally written off the months of April and May. Maybe June will mean less restrictions. Maybe it won’t.
I miss the life that I lovingly created for myself . My friends and all the eccentric characters in my neighborhood. I miss the kind British-accented homeless woman who sleeps in a nook on 83rd street and Madison who tells me the same thing every day: I prefer dogs to humans.
I long for a leader in a white coat or a suit to reassure me that all will be okay soon. I wait and wait. I am grateful that most people that I know who have had the virus have recovered. I am pulverized emotionally by the loss of the ones who have succumbed to it. Almost all suffered greatly and died without their families or friends. Alone. To be continued.

*The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect Raseef22

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