Covid 19 Pandemic Archive

Rough Times for Little Ones

Posted April 26, 2021 By kmarrs

Sammy is not doing so well. This pandemic and the resulting isolation have really gotten to him. He recently reached his breaking point and is now super suicidal.

In late March, he had a full-on plan, and a backup plan, on how he wanted to kill himself. He was already in weekly therapy and we were sorting out the ESA situation with Ziggy. He’d also recently started Prozac, but if anything it made him worse.

So I took him to the Children’s Hospital Crisis Center and they admitted him to their psych ward for a few days. I cannot stress enough that he wanted this, and I’m very proud of him for making that decision.

He was there over a few days of spring break and while there he was in some pretty intense therapy. They gave him all sorts of new skills and ways to cope with his depression. His medication was switched to Lexapro and an anti-anxiety med was added to the mix as well.

While he was inpatient, I bought a bunch of toolboxes and locked up every single medication and sharp in the house. That way upon release I could promise him he’d be safer in his home.

As of right now, he’s still in rough shape but we’re working hard to lift him out of his depression. One of the key changes is I’m sending him out to play. The landlord built a nice playground right across the street last summer but we were in quarantine and I couldn’t let him play on it. But at this point, we all got covid over the winter, and it will be a while before we can get it again we’re pretty sure, so I’ve decided fuck it and am letting him play with the neighborhood kids, now that it’s nice enough outside. I can’t lift him out of his loneliness if I don’t let him play with the kids outside.

I’m hoping with continued time outside with the kids in the area, more and more weekly therapy, helping him practice his skills, and a good amount of help from medication, I’ll be able to help him climb out of the pit of despair.

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Covid 2020

Posted December 17, 2020 By kmarrs

This has been a difficult month. First the car accident. And now Covid.

The thing is, I knew I’d get Covid.

I’m not well, still. It’s been about 2 weeks. So I’m going to go ahead and just copy/paste up into here what I told someone else. It makes it crystal clear how I got Covid. Then I’ll follow up with a PSA.

I’m an in-home caregiver for the elderly and we’re being as careful as can be in general but my client… red as the sea. Her son flies in from California every month to spend a week with her. He does not wear a mask. He goes to parties. He took her to a huge Thanksgiving gathering. He won’t let us wear masks around her. My coworkers are all like, “It’s fine!” Meanwhile, I’m trying to get assigned to another case but I really need this job. Then she f’ing starts coughing a week after Thanksgiving and no one reports it they simply started giving her Nyquil. I reported it immediately when I found out but you’ll never f’in guess what I’m sick as a dog with. Go on. Guess. F me, I guess.

So yeah, it’s no wonder how I got Covid at all. Now for a PSA.

Ok, I’m going to put this out there and I hope y’all are listening because this could save lives. My household has 5 cases of covid and all 5 are presenting differently. Looking at that covid vs flu vs head cold chart you’d diagnose only 1 or maybe 2 of us with covid. If that, since there is little to no coughing happening as far as I can tell. I’m presenting with mostly sinus bullshit. According to the charts going around, that’s not covid. That’s a head cold. Sammy is puking with a sore throat. That’s flu. All of us have random combinations of various cold and flu symptoms. We can’t even all agree on running a fever. So I’m telling you here and now, it doesn’t matter what your symptom looks like. Don’t wait for a cough or shortness of breath. If you have any cold or flu symptoms show up please isolate and get tested. No one is going to get upset with you if you get tested and it turns out to be just a cold. But you could kill someone if you assume it’s just the regular seasonal crud and it turns out it was covid. I wish I had known this a week ago. I would have made some different choices that I can’t unmake and must live with. (I didn’t know Marge was coughing at the time.) My only solace is that I ALWAYS wore a mask.

That PSA is also a week and a half old. Since then the kids are much better, though Iris and I are still miserable. I myself have had every single cold and flu symptom there is. But it all started in my sinuses. I honest to God thought I had seasonal crud because I was comparing my symptoms to the chart. My Covid test was more routine than anything else. And I could have gotten someone very very sick. I, in fact, easily might have. I don’t know. I’ll never know.

Anyway. Work is paying me to stay out for 2 weeks. I just hope and pray I’m actually better at the end of the two weeks because right now I still spike the occasional fever and my cough is atrocious. Y’all know by now my coughs linger. Hopefully since this isn’t bronchitis that isn’t the case. I can’t afford to miss more work than what work is willing to pay me for.

I also just really don’t like being this sick. I can not stress enough that you don’t want Covid.

So wear your mask. Social distance. Don’t gather for holiday gatherings. That includes Christmas at Grandma’s. Don’t kill Grandma. You don’t want that.

And if you have to work because capitalism, don’t beat yourself up. But do take care of yourself and get tested at the first sign of any symptoms.

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A Post

Posted December 9, 2020 By kmarrs

I’m vaguely aware I’m overdue for a post. However, due to someone else’s bad choices that I had to live with, I’m riddled with covid and my brain cells were the first to die off.

I’ll try again next week or the week after. I dunno man. I’m doing my best.

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Time sort of got away from me. I suppose it does that when the calendar no longer matters. Last week was a rush of phone interviews, COVID testing (I’m fine. It was a precaution.) and such.

There was also a weekend depression because I found a job. While I’m excited about the job itself, I wish it was a 2021 job. Not an end of the summer 2020 job with COVID still being out in full force in my community. But, well… the unemployment bonus is gone and I have a family to provide for.

Anyway, I’m not ready to talk about the job. I had orientation yesterday. I start my first shift tomorrow. So I’ll have something to say next week.

Also, just a note. I’m going to start having new posts drop on Thursdays. Wednesdays are my guaranteed day off and I work a lot of weekends so it just makes sense to drop things the day after I have a day off, so that if I am writing last minute it’s on a Wednesday not a Sunday, when I’m working.

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This One Is About Money

Posted August 3, 2020 By kmarrs

So the GOP failed to agree to a stimulus without trying to add to the military budget, or fund a refurbishment of the west wing, so like many Americans, I just lost 80% of my income.

Which means I’m now job hunting. Which is exactly what the GOP wants me to be doing. I’m just supposed to ignore that there were 1700 new cases in my county the other day, and that that is normal right now.

I don’t really know what I’m looking for. I think I’d prefer something where I’m in scrubs. But I’d be fine with a regular office too. I’m just sort of seeing what’s out there and applying to anything that will pay the bills.

I’m not settling for less than 15$ an hour. I’m aiming for 18$ an hour. I have 5 people besides myself to support, I’m nearing 40, and I have a college degree. I will be paid my worth.

Realistically, I’ll accept whatever I’m offered, but I’ll keep looking even after that if the pay isn’t a reasonable living wage.

This is such bullshit though.

Anyway.

I between my income and Robin’s disability, we have enough to cover rent. We are still, however, short about 800$ for utilities, insurance, and various debt payments. If you like what I do here, now is the time to tell me via PayPal. I put a lot of work into being a source on mental health shenanigans, and I don’t run ads. I think asking for tips is valid. So if you can, now is the time to toss a coin to your blogger, oh valley of plenty.

You can do so here.

As tip tax, I offer the corn the birds out front (we’re not buying bird food this month obviously) tried to grow.

They have an entire garden going out front, in the beds and in the lawn, but this corn is my favorite. I’m kind of sad Robin pulled it.

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Quarantine Chronicles Part 5

Posted July 6, 2020 By kmarrs

This is going to be long because I’m super fucking behind. I’m sorry.

Day 61 of isolation

The shrubbery came! All my plants are in the ground! We are now thoroughly enjoying the space I created in my own backyard!

I took the 16yo and Iris creeking in my favorite creek. It was a delight to forge the creek with my eldest 2. In a couple of weeks, we’re going to go back with the littles. Just need to get them aquatic shoes first so they aren’t wearing heavy sneakers in the water.

I don’t know how long the quarantine will last. I bunkered down early and I’m going to stick with it until the government forces me back to work. But it’s nice to have the freedom to enjoy my handiwork.

Day 62 of isolation

Spent the day on the porch with Sammy and occasionally Lucas. We didn’t really do anything of consequence. Just hung out while it rained and the mowers dodged showers. The three of us got mani-pedis. It was quiet. Nice. Important.

Day 63 of isolation

It rained all day. All-day. That creek I played in on day 61 is now a river. Much more rain to come too.

Finally finished season 3 of Ducktales. Dying to watch season 3, which has started, but I want to move on to other media first.

I’m finally sitting down to The Umbrella Academy.

Also picked up a couple of books that were thrown in my general direction by someone who wants my attention.

Day 64 of isolation

Hello. I just want to be able to eat the things I enjoyed. Without almost dying.

Day 65 of isolation

I got to the halfway point of The Umbrella Academy. Hopefully, I can find the motivation to finish that soon. It’s really good and I want to see what happens next. But the motivation to do anything is hard when you’re working on your third month of quarantine.

Made surprise chocolate chip cookies for the family right before bed. They’ve been begging me to make cookies almost daily for a couple of weeks now.

Day 66 of isolation

I’ve reached a quiet antisocial mood. Maybe it’s hormones. Maybe it’s quarantine.

Time blindness doesn’t help.

Day 67 of isolation

I finished season 1 of The Umbrella Academy today. The soundtrack goes hard. That’s really the only comment I’m choosing to make.

I started reading The Witcher series today. I’m ready to get lost in a book or 12 for awhile.

Day 68 of isolation

I may or may not be attempting to grow lavender from seed. We’ll see how that goes.

Day 69 of isolation

I am plotting. With plants. Less garden, more chaos. I am being a true Hufflepuff and friend of the bees. I’m very excited!

Speaking of bees… I have 3 carpenter bees working hard at creating a home for themselves within the wooden support of my porch roof and I am thrilled!

Day 70 of isolation

I got! My first! Frog villager! On New Leaf! Today! And then! I caught! Many! Frogs! In my ponds!

Also, I now have 5-7 carpenter bees calling my back porch home! I thought the new ones were fighting with the established ones. Nope. Turns out they were fucking. So that’s nice. Guess I’m going to be a grandma soon.

Day 71 of isolation

I’m feeling really fatigued these days. I think I could probably use a good hike to like shake myself out. I’d go creeking again but the 16yo needs water-friendly shoes first (soon) and I need the creeks to not be flooded.

Day 72 of isolation

Took the 16yo to get a sport physical. He’s playing football for his school now, I guess. Practice starts Monday.

My clover seeds showed up. There are millions of tiny seeds in the bag. Millions.

Day 73 of isolation

I’ve been up since 5. Tossed the clover seeds around while the sun was still down so I didn’t get caught. Played ACNL on the porch for a few hours. Did my basic daily gardening. Rested some more. Then took Sammy on a 3-mile hike at the park.

Oh hey. I also did 4 loads of dishes and like 5 loads of laundry.

Also had both my Slytherins gang up on me and talk me out of going to the local protest. Being chronically ill and the mother of 4 seems to make me not riot material. Even if I’m mainly just wanting to be a white meat shield between the police and protesters. I am, however, going to break out my new stamps and send a few dozen letters to the elected decision-makers that are supposed to do my bidding.

Anyway, it’s 3 hours until the brand new curfew, and part of me wants to spend the night on my patio, which is decidedly not in my house, writing letters by hand through the night. But who am I kidding? I’m a spoonie with a bedtime that takes place before the curfew even goes into effect, who has been up and highly active since 5 am. Going to the protests would give my adrenalin and therefore spoon count wouldn’t matter. But alas, without the adrenaline, I’ll be snoring here soon.

Day 74 of isolation

Listened to some new (to me) music that y’all have been listening to for a decade now and well, I understand the drive towards tearing down the establishment all the more. Finally listening to this album was well-timed to the current protests and riots. I kind of want to stand at the front lines blaring this music from a boombox. And while I have not named the album or artist, that’s a choice I made because really so much music from the last, oh, 20 years does apply and I realize that. I listen to nothing and y’all have been listening to bands that call for the destruction of the current system for your entire lives.

Fueled by this music, and knowing I can’t protest, I went ahead and sat at my desk and did what I needed to do to send out almost two dozen letters to almost two dozen people that are meant to represent me, and you. I started with Trump and ended with the seven members of my city council.

The rest of the day has been quiet. Lots of sun. General gardening upkeep. Finally got my hands on a new hose for watering and playing with the kids. I’ve been using a big ass watering can hauling it from the front yard, where the working spigot is, to the back yard, where the plants are. Also, my wife fixed the spigot at the back of the house. Which is good because the hose I bought was cheap and nice, but not long.

Day 75, 76, and 77 of isolation

I’m not sure what to tell you all other than it’s all been a blur, I’ve been distracted, and Black Lives Fucking Matter.

I did add to my pile of letters and snail-mailed my reps a request to save the post office.

Otherwise I just feel so lost and helpless.

Day 78 of isolation

Validated by my new provider at the hematologist.

Grew my first blueberry.

Bought the kids a kiddie pool and sprinkler.

Day 79 of isolation

I have discovered Kentucky Derby hats.

I will be buying Kentucky Derby hats.

For sitting on the back patio.

Day 80 of isolation

Went creeking in a different than my usual creek that the 16yo is always hyping up. Took the 8yo. Should not. Should have just gone to the usual creek. We had a bad experience. My left thigh is fucked up.

Day 81 of isolation

What is a day? What is time? Is a day really exactly 86400 seconds long? How did someone determine that? Why did someone determine that? To make me suffer? Who determined exactly how long a second is? Hasn’t mankind seen enough needless suffering?

The corned beef and cabbage we had for dinner was good though.

Day 82 of isolation

Admitted the kiddie pool and hose and sprinklers are going to be a major part of my kids’ summer so I went to my mom’s to pick up swimsuits and bought new ones for Sammy and Lucas who are like weeds. We also bought a bunch of beach towels to have on hand so they can stop walking through my living room soaking wet.

The Shepard’s hook that comes with bird feeders finally got here. Lucas has a really nice setup outside his window. Regular seed, black oil sunflower seeds, peanuts, and suet cakes are available for the birds and squirrels. My sister found some really nice binoculars at a thrift store and my dad cleaned them up. Lucas is now ready to fully submerge into a special interest. I even bought him a bird’s of Ohio identification guide and a field journal to track what he sees.

Day 83 of isolation

While running around outside barefoot, Sammy injured her foot. Not in a need a doctor sort of way, but there was first aid needed. And I realized noisy how ill-prepared I was for the situation as far as supplies go. Sure I have plenty of bandaids. But I keep very little gauze in the house and had no medical tape. Made me really pause and reevaluate how I’m spending my money this month.

A proper first aid kit is of course a must for every household. But the thought of piecing one together is so overwhelming. But considering my 17yo actively plans to break his nose and get his first stitches this summer (two separate occasions even) I apparently can’t wait.

Day 84 of isolation

Started buying supplies for two first aid kits. One for my house and one for my car. I also plan to buy a mini one for my bag. I’ve got a solid start but still a long way to go.

Day 85 of isolation

Gotta keep this up! Apparently it’s inspiring! <3

It’s helpful to me too.

Anyway.

Sammy, who is an extreme extrovert not made for isolation, has been reconnected with her two closest friends from school: Abby and Abigail.

I spoke to her teacher and the school counselor and was honest that she was suffering and falling into a deep depression and that I didn’t have the social skills to already know how to contact the parents of these two girls. I asked her teacher to please email both moms and give them my email address and phone number. We would leave it in their hands so I wasn’t intruding, but that I’d love to hear from them (text message or email preferred) so we could get the kids talking and in another month if things have settled and we avoid a second wave, we could set up playdates.

She’s been chatting on discord with Abby for a few days now. And today when Abigail reached out, I broke down and agreed to let Sammy spend the night over there tonight. They’ve been isolating like we have, is my understanding, so it seems pretty low risk. Plus Thomas has been going to football practice and friends’ houses since just after memorial day, so if he can she can.

Sammy is already a million times better from her depression.

Oh and it’s her first sleepover that isn’t Grandma’s house.

Day 86 of isolation

Spent the day running errands with my 17yo. We hit some 6 different stores across Columbus putting together the two first aid kits. They are now 95% complete and I’m super happy with them.

I also really enjoyed the time with my kid too. That was just the absolute best!

I’ve also pretty much decided I want to go to the local community college to get my EMT certificate. It’s a single 7 credit hour class plus an official test that certifies me. I don’t want to be an active EMT. But I want to know the first aid and I’d like the ability to be a street medic as needed. I could do things like help run the first aid tent at pride every year. Also, it’ll look good on my resumé and on grad school applications. It also gives me a decent topic for that application essay: how being I’ll be prepared for an injury my daughter sustained during the midst of feeling helpless during the 2020 race riots led to my decision to and passion for becoming EMT certified.

Anyway. The class is like 1.1k and I can probably do that with my next tax return. So summer 2021 goals!

Day 87 of Isolation

I took the littles to the zoo.  They just opened back up, with precautions in place, and this weekend was members only, though you have to reserve a spot since they are only allowing so many people in at a time.  Luckily I reserved early because they sold out for this weekend almost instantly.

We were only there for about 2.5 hours.  We didn’t come close to seeing everything.  But we got what was most important to us.  I wanted to see the bears.  Sammy wanted to see the lions and tigers.  Lucas wanted to see the penguins.  We all wanted to see the Heart of Africa.  We even got to feed John Peter the giraffe!

Yesterday I got 10k steps in.  I don’t normally care, but I’m been tracking the days I do things like the zoo and hiking.  Mostly because those are the days I royally fuck up my right foot.  I’m learning I have a collapsed arch.  And really anything over about 5k steps in a condensed time fucks me right up.  So imagine 10k.

I’m going to have to see a doctor and get custom inserts.  Which makes me feel so old.  But hiking is my primary form of exercise, so I need to be able to actually walk a few miles and still able to walk the usual 4k steps the next day, without pain.

Day 88 of isolation

I had a rough day.  I really needed a day to unwind and rest and just be mellow and keep to myself, but apparently, that just wasn’t an option.  I think the highlight of my day was Sammy biting her way out of a headlock Lucas put her in and drawing blood in the process.  That really just nicely sums up the chaos of the day.

Day 89 of isolation

Today was also a mess.  I was just fully incompetent as a parent until about 1 pm due to a rough night of bad sleep.  Finally got myself into gear and was functional at 1 though.  It’s not been a super day, but things were accomplished.

One of my chosen sisters sent me some cash and directed me to go buy bulk birdseed at the tractor supply store.  The village supporting my 12yo’s needs to feed/watch the birds is really heartwarming.  I priced all sorts of bulk seeds and such there.  I’ll be able to get the regular variety seed, the black oil sunflower seeds, and the mealworms there for great bulk prices.  I found a good price on suet cakes from lows.  So I think I’ll be able to keep this going indefinitely.  I might need some cash tossed in my direction here and there.  But like, it was looking a lot worse just a few hours ago.

Day 90 of isolation

I basically slept until 1:30 and then went back to bed at 8.  It was a catch up on sleep and fix the sleep schedule day.  Which sometimes, that’s just how it goes.

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