I had my oncologist checkup today. The doctor was running way behind. I was in the waiting room for nearly an hour, I didn’t mind. I started a Covidiot Support Group while I waited.
There were three of us waiting. All of us got to talking about dealing with the unmasked and unvaccinated and the choices we have to make with people, especially those close to us.
One has had to tell family to stay away for about a year now. They are angry with her because they can’t come visit her toddlers or their son, but they flat out refuse to get vaccinated or wear masks. This lady is undergoing chemo and literally has a chemo port sticking out of her chest. She is immunocompromised and is taking care of herself. Instead of understanding, the family tells her she’s selfish for keeping the family apart, making her the bad guy and telling all who will listen how selfish she is. Projection is a mofo.
Two has had similar issues because she’s also immunocompromised and she has an 11 year old in school (who, if it’s not already available to him, will get a Covid shot for his 12th birthday). She has relatives who don’t care if she’s compromised, they want to see the kid who can transmit it to her easily. I don’t envy that tight rope. She’s had to be the selfish bad guy, too.
Two’s kid attends HISD, which defied a gubernatorial mandate to not mandate that which has been scientifically proven to reduce cases – masks. Because of masks, HISD kids are less at risk. HISD has roughly 197,000 students and 27,000 employees. As of today, community control has been achieved with less than 200 cases in HISD per day. Masks. Work.
Me? I’ve had to draw some boundaries with people, and damn, is it difficult. I am immunocompromised. I have to keep these boundaries in place. There are unvaccinated people all around me. If you want to see me, you wear a mask, we go outside, and you have to be vaccinated. Period. Dot. It flabbergasts me how people can take my desire to be healthy personally, but they do.
I am not selfish, I’m practicing self-care. I am diligent. I am doing whatever it takes to stay healthy so I can live my life to the fullest. I am not the bad guy. How can I be the bad guy when all I’ve done is draw a line that requires someone to do something free (that will protect them also) or wear a piece of cloth on their face so they don’t potentially make me ill? I had some unvaccinated people socially distance visit and wear masks. They obeyed those boundaries (this was before Delta). They worked with me. I love them for that. I’ve had to get stricter as the virus gets worse.
Interestingly enough, when I was going through cancer treatment and had to be extra careful then, some had no issues doing whatever it took so they could come see me and love on me. I did the same for my brother when he had leukemia. I had to wash my hands to my elbows, wear gloves and I wore the mask and I did it with all the love in my heart so I could be with him.
The difference now? I can’t wrap my brain around it, because I think it will hurt more than I want it to. There are some people, however, who love in words and not in action. And right now, I need the action. One, Two and I need that action, intent and sacrifice, and trust me, we rarely, if ever, ask for it.
Now we’re asking for it and we will continue to do so because in our cases, it’s not about them. It is about us. Our health and well being, which includes our mental health.
One and Two were pretty pumped up when I went back to the doctor’s office. So was I. It’s been a long haul. I’ve lost people to Covid, and I still can’t believe they’re gone. No funerals. No memorials. We’ve all been through a lot and there is a clear path to victory but only the selfish bad guys seem to want to get there (which includes those who are vaxxed to protect themselves and others).
I get it, some can’t be vaxxed, and they need the same boundaries I do because of it. I feel for them. I’m sure some treat them like selfish bad guys. To those choosing not to be vaxxed, these are the boundaries we have to have to stay healthy. Please don’t take it personally. We love you, we really do. We’d like to stay healthy so we can come see you again one day. Hopefully sooner than later.
I am so grateful for those who are doing whatever it takes for me to have a safe trip for me to see my Bestie and my family next month, and who do whatever it takes to hang out every now and then. I am worth a piece of cloth over their mouth and nose. Why is that so hard to say? Why do I have to say it?
One day, this pandemic will be in the rearview mirror but the boundaries for some may not be. I will continue to stay healthy, including my mental health. I will continue to evolve. I’ve learned so much during this pandemic. Upward and onward.