Covid in our neck of the woods

Fog in woods

Feeling tense the last couple of days about covid. The only time I felt real fear was on March 14th last winter when we locked down…as the mind imagined all sorts of possible sickness and death scenarios.

But cases are now growing like crazy in our Upper Peninsula, and local people in our county are getting sick. Our good friend’s entire family came down with the virus, at least six out of seven of them, although only one “counted” under official tallies because the rest weren’t tested. Luckily they all experienced only mild sickness with fevers, chills, coughs. They are better now.

This past week we’ve had outbreaks at the grocery store, an American Legion, tribal offices, a bar, and now one of our schools is teaching virtually for two weeks because staff members are testing positive or ill. People I know are posting about their virus challenges on Facebook.

One dear friend has a granddaughter possibly exposed at another nearby school (she sat next to someone in three out of four classes who caught the virus) and another friend’s daughter-in-law has a close coworker with covid. (The coworker did not believe in wearing masks.)

Ticking time

Michigan had 3,792 new cases yesterday. Thirty one deaths (20 identified during a vital record review). Over 200 people like you and me tested positive in the U.P. In one day. The day before was similar. Some are asymptomatic, some mildly ill, some very ill, and a few will not live to celebrate Thanksgiving.

Fifty patients are hospitalized with covid in the U.P. and twenty one patients are in ICU.

Our U.P. borders Wisconsin where 5,278 cases were recorded on Saturday. On Friday they had 1,510 people in the hospital with coronavirus, 349 in the ICU.

My mom lives in assisted living downstate. Right across the road there’s a nursing home where eight patients and two staff members tested positive this week. That just feels too close for comfort.

I am not really feeling particularly scared for Barry and me, although we might get sick at any time. I am scared for our community. For the vulnerable. For those with pre-existing conditions. Generally, am just feeling this background tension of not knowing what’s going to happen next. It feels like an invisible rumbling train is approaching at full speed and you don’t know where the tracks are and how to get out of the way.

Old freight train

What do you do with scared or tense feelings like these? First, I feel them. I am feeling them in my body now, especially the chest and stomach. Not pushing them away, not turning around to the positive too quickly.

Hello, little scared ones. You, too, can be here.

Then I am turning it over to the Holy, to God, to the Heart. Holding all of us in the Holy Heart.

Finally, sometimes I search for an affirmation or prayer that rings true to What the Heart Knows. What isn’t just words of goodwill, but what rings true. Let me pause for a moment and search for what feels right.

Thank you for surrounding us all with the balm of love and healing. Let me be an instrument of open-hearted love toward all who are hurting. Bless all who suffer. Help us relax and trust in thee–the only haven where we can truly trust.

What’s happening in your neck of the woods with the coronavirus? Do you know a lot of people who have it now?

Day 15 of a seventy-five day journey to connect more deeply with God, Spirit, Holy, Love…to explore “What the Heart Knows” during the waning days of 2020.

About Kathy

I live in the middle of the woods in Michigan's Upper Peninsula. Next to Lake Superior's cold shores. I love to blog.
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33 Responses to Covid in our neck of the woods

  1. Tilly travel says:

    We have just gone back into full lockdown, our area is a high risk, that said we don’t know anyone who has it now.
    Stay safe Kathy

    Bright Blessings

  2. I really wish the best for your community. Sorry to hear about the rising cases. I hope correct safety measures are taken to stop this. Stay safe and healthy.

    • Kathy says:

      Thank you both. It is challenging. And a lot of people are still not wearing masks or socially distancing. Not sure what more safety measures will be taken at this point, but am glad they canceled in-person school at least in the affected school. May you both stay healthy as well.

  3. Larissa says:

    So many feelings! It’s really hard. Things are not too bad here compared to other places, but the numbers are getting worse. I still don’t know of anyone in my local circle of friend and neighbors who’s had it. It’s a little surreal.

    • Kathy says:

      So many feelings, indeed… I do keep an eye on your numbers and have been impressed that they have been so low. Your friends and neighbors must be doing a good of keeping everyone safe!

  4. Susan D. Durham says:

    Thank you for the comforting prayer to help us cope, Kathy. I actually copied it so I can look at it as much as I need to. After such a day of love yesterday, I took a turn for the worse in the evening when I saw a neighbor allowing her grandchildren in the building. Everyone else trick-or-treated outside and respected the health of our little community here. Sigh …

    I am going through this whole ugly resentment thing about the neighbor (and others I know) who “screams” about losing her rights when she has spent these longs months changing absolutely nothing about her life. Unlike most of us, she has seen her children and grandchildren the entire time, she doesn’t wear a mask, and she freely floats about going wherever she pleases, thank you very much. I am working on reaching “radical acceptance,” but am truly struggling today. Grrr … breathe .. feel love … grrr … repeat.

    It’s scary and I thank you for posting this today. So hoping your mom’s facility will be able to remain open and, if not, that it will not be shut down for a long duration. Many, many blessing blowing your way. 💙💜💚

    • Kathy says:

      Susan, I am glad that prayer resonated with you. Isn’t it also strange how we can be so vibing with love–like you were yesterday–and then suddenly it all turns around. I know how much it hurts and angers you to see this neighbor acting in ways that don’t feel life-affirming and respectful toward this virus. Am feeling the grrrr energy, too. (But, remember, radical acceptance is all about allowing the grrrr energy to exist, too!) But still hard.
      It seems a lot of us are anxious about the virus, the election, even all this snowing going on. Giving you an invisible yet powerful hug as you struggle. xoxo

  5. dorannrule says:

    Hard to hit a “like” button for this scary post. Fear of Covid waxes and wanes with statistics and every harrowing story. Here in rural Virginia we were a bit smug about our low numbers of cases, hospitalizations and deaths. Until the two universities resumed classes in Sept. Now we are seeing higher numbers but the kids will all go home for Thanksgiving.

    • Kathy says:

      I thought about that, Dor. Sometimes the “like” button doesn’t feel appropriate because, darn it, we don’t like that this is happening. We were smug like you guys, too. Hardly any cases for the first several months. Then they slowly started creeping up by ones and twos. You are right, the universities and schools opening seem to have helped triggered this. And maybe the cooler weather around here where folks aren’t outside much anymore.

  6. Connecticut had 761 new cases Friday, 329 people in the hospital, 7 deaths. Our population is about 3.6 million to your 9.9 million. Sounds terrifying no matter how you slice it. Most days I feel safe because we are keeping our bubble so tight but sometimes I worry we will slip up somehow. Every step we take requires so much forethought and planning. I like your illustration of an invisible rumbling train approaching at full speed and not knowing where the tracks are or how to get out of the way. I often say I feel like a sitting duck. Contact tracers in our health district say that most new cases are coming from small indoor gatherings of family and friends. It’s hard not to be angry with neighbors in our complex who are doing this all the time… Most of our fears, though, stem from our status as ones with pre-existing conditions. It helps to acknowledge the anxiety when it rises and to let it have its say. And then remember all the reasons I have to be grateful in spite of anything that *might* happen. Breathing deeply…

    • Kathy says:

      I know you have been being very careful, my friend, and hope things continue to go well for you and Tim. I have no idea whether my digestive troubles might be a pre-existing condition or not. It’s so hard to say. It does feel important to acknowledge fear and then move on to gratitude or whatever arises to reveal the larger picture. Going back to the Presence of Now again and again. Breathing deeply indeed… ❤

  7. Ally Bean says:

    I don’t know anyone who has the virus at the moment, but we live a stone’s throw from a county with very high numbers. We don’t mix it up with people socially or for work, so our bubble of two is pretty safe. That being said, I’ve had my moments of extreme anxiety over this virus. I’ve allowed myself to feel the horror of it, then let out a sigh as I drifted back into a calmer head space.

    • Kathy says:

      It sounds like you guys are pretty safe and conscientious, Ally Bean. It also sounds like you feel your feelings and let them move through you. I had a time last week when I realized I was closer to another human being than felt comfortable, but just had to let it go. Many blessings to you and your family.

  8. Robin says:

    Thank you for the prayer, Kathy. I hope the virus doesn’t get any closer to your mother or the facility where she is living. I hope that things calm where you are.

    I don’t know anyone who actively has the virus right now. But I do know some who have recovered and some who have not (and left us, permanently, during an earlier spike). I’ve been feeling anxious this past week because of the virus, because of the medical procedure, because of having to expose myself and my husband in order to go to the outpatient center. Now we wait two weeks and hope that there was no exposure. Like you and some of the others who have commented, I let the anxiety in. We sit and chat. My stomach tends to clench with it, sometimes in the middle of the night, waking me up. So, we chat again, in the wee hours. We breathe together, the anxiety and I, until we find a rhythm that suits us both. Sometimes the heart speaks in something other than words that somehow calms the anxiety and the clenching.

    Our current total is 435. We’ve had 8 new cases in the last 48 hours. According to the latest stats: of those, 365 have recovered, 2 are hospitalized, and there are no new deaths (we’ve had 6). Our positivity rate is 3.14%, which is high for our county. It’s a small, poor county (population of around 25,000). I sometimes think our numbers are low because many of the people here are unlikely to get tested. The Eastern Shore in general has some high numbers (counties north and south of us), mostly due to the chicken plants where workers are seen as expendable and disposable. The same is true of the crabbing and farming industries here, too.

    • Kathy says:

      Thanks for sharing what’s going on in your world, Robin, both the internals and the externals. I am pausing over your words about the heart sometimes speaking in something other than words, and how that can calm. Yes. Maybe that’s where mostly the “true” calming comes. I am not sure the heart speaks in words, although perhaps she sometimes borrows them.

      Blessings to you and your family, always.

  9. Barb says:

    The virus is holding the planet captive. There are too many “experts” and opinions seem to change from one day to the next. We just keep doing what we’ve done from the start – keep mostly to ourselves, shower and wash clothes when we return from an errand, visit outside and distanced if our family comes (that may not be possible soon – getting very cold here). Our county’s numbers spiked over the last 2 weeks, so if this week sees a continued upturn in cases, we’ll be put on stricter regulation by the state of CO. We still have many tourists visiting so exposure to people from other states also continues. Unfortunately, high schoolers had a massive party a week ago and so far 22 have tested positive. The high school shut down, and it is on-line learning only until sometime in Nov. Whether the ski area will open is a big question for our county. It is a major economic contributor for people here.

    • Kathy says:

      Ohmygosh, yes, Barb. And it’s hard sometimes to know who and what to believe from day to day. It almost seems a person has to take pronouncements very lightly and keep a “wait and see” attitude. I read the news and think no, no, no, yes, no, yes, no about pronouncements people are making. Some feel right to my heart and others feel incomplete–like the person is blowing up one side of the issue bigger than she or he should be doing. I also feel very sorry for those in positions of governing trying to contain the virus. They seem to make mistakes, but often I can see where they’re trying to come from. So hard. I would probably err in the direction of trying to keep people safe, although that comes with its own set of overreactions. Thank you for sharing and I keep you and your family in my heart.

  10. Debbie says:

    I’m in Illinois, and our cases, too, are spiking dangerously. Most of our regions are undergoing stricter regulations in an effort to get this thing under some control. My aging mom lives with me and she’s in that “vulnerable” group; thus, I stick pretty close to home except for necessary grocery shopping, pharmacy pick-ups, and so forth — and I sanitize a LOT! We’ve managed to stay healthy, thank Heaven, but so many others haven’t. It’s easy to succumb to fear, but when I feel that coming on, I redouble my prayers and praise. So many things we can’t control, but we try to control our mindset!

    • Kathy says:

      Debbie, I have heard that Illinois is spiking just like all of our midwestern states. Darn it. Hope your dear mom makes it through without getting a challenging case of the virus. So glad that prayer and praise comfort you, too. Blessings to you and your family.

  11. amleta says:

    I think the fog makes the forest magical. But when I have to drive with the car I don’t like driving in fog because it’s dangerous. 😆😆😆

  12. debyemm says:

    It is here in my Missouri county and most of the people here don’t believe in masks, believe the numbers are inflated and the deaths counted not really from the virus. Sigh.
    I heard Dr Beckwith at Agape share something interesting on Sunday – he was describing a recent Emoto water crystalization experiment. When they put COVID on the water, it didn’t look too ugly but it didn’t crystalize into a beautiful pattern. When they put Fear with COVID 19 it became deadly ugly. He said – fear won’t help you but it helps the virus become stronger. Being familiar with Emoto’s work, I found that interesting.
    My husband’s cousin in NC and I having been trading COVID stats daily since March. Missouri now has more people in the hospital than NC. If one compares cases to deaths, it would be less deadly to get sick in NC.
    Our Missouri stats as of yesterday were – 1,649 hospitalized, 494 in ICU with 214 on ventilators. 3,026 total deaths and 185,535 total cases. 2,535,182 tested. Missouri shows their positivity rate two ways and for the life of me I don’t know what the difference is – both don’t look too good but then I suspect Missouri tests only symptomatic people or those with close exposure – 14% (CDC method) and 27.5 % (state method). I will note that the positivity rate keeps going up daily. I’m waiting to see it stabilize.
    We take precautions, have very limited exposures and live in a sparsely populated area. So far, so good, even with me grocery shopping and going to a small yoga class weekly (yes I even wear a mask throughout yoga, and add goggles and gloves for the grocery shopping, wipe everything in the car down with a disinfecting wipe afterwards). My husband and oldest son worked for the Census, they too managed not to become infected and yes, they were also wearing masks and using disinfecting wipes on the data device and car surfaces. We’ve been delaying routine medical appointments but recently braved the dentist and some labs for me in St Louis. We were long overdue to see the hygienist so we just did it. No problems from that excursion either.

    • Kathy says:

      Deb, thanks for sharing all of this. Now I am fascinated about the Emoto water crystallization experiment, too. Very cool! I am questioning, though (inside myself right now) about the fear. If we don’t feel the fear as it comes up, it can so easily be repressed and wreak invisible havoc in the system. That is why I always advocate feeling it first. So that it can move through more quickly. I am wondering how Beckwith would view this.

      It also sounds you’re just as interested in statistics as I am. And it sounds like your entire family is probably quite safe, although who knows with this. As safe as possible. I have to go see a doctor for a routine physical next week to check some things out. Have been putting it off…but now’s the time to go. Continued wellness to your whole family.

  13. aFrankAngle says:

    A bit off-topic. I’m a day late, but learning about the depth of your soul, I think you will appreciate this. Yesterday (the date of this post) was All Saints Day. Six years ago, our handbell choir premiered a commissioned piece for our church’s 50th anniversary … and it debuted All Saints weekend.

  14. Stacy says:

    Fortunately, the numbers are still low where I live. But I have lived in fear this year, but for different reasons. So I have had to trust in the Holy Heart. To live in fear is to stop living.

    Caution and prayer. XOXO

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