Anger in The Time of Covid-19

by Katy on April 2, 2020 · 199 comments

I know that I’ve been letting the blog lie dormant over the past few weeks, and it’s not because I haven’t tried to write. I have. I’ve started blog posts with an eye to bringing normalcy to our crazy world, I’ve tried to write about how my family is spending our days, and at one low moment I wrote up an entire blog post only to discover that I somehow wasn’t logged into WordPress, which meant that every single word disappeared when I reformatted the piece.

I assumed that I couldn’t coalesce my thoughts due to anxiety or generalized “mush brain,” which is a term I recently coined.

Use it in a sentence?

“My mush brain has resulted in me reading this same damned paragraph eight times in a row without an iota of comprehension.”

“Mush brain.”

But I’ve realized that it’s not anxiety — it’s anger!

  • Anger that people have died/are dying/will die due to deliberate self serving egotistical acts by the corrupt Donald Trump administration.

  • Anger about the saccharine “medical care workers are heroes” narrative that shifts the attention away from the why of how scarcity of personal protective equipment (PPE) was ever allowed to happen.

  • Anger that we’re all cowering in our homes while the extended Trump family and CEOs profiteer from a global pandemic.

  • Anger that my son is trapped in his childhood bedroom taking online university classes instead of sitting in a classroom with his peers.

  • Anger that my 77-year-old mother is terrified that she and her husband will be denied life saving medical care because ventilators are being prioritized for the non-elderly.

  • Anger that health insurance is tied to employment at a time when millions of Americans have just lost their jobs.

This list is seemingly endless, but it pretty much describes why I haven’t written any blog posts about nifty thrift store finds or cooking from scratch.

I’m angry. So fucking angry.

Katy Wolk-Stanley    

“Use it up, wear it out, make it do or do without.”

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{ 187 comments… read them below or add one }

Susan Robinson April 2, 2020 at 12:21 pm

Katy, I understand EVERY WORD. I am angry because of all those reasons and because my 91 year old mother is alone in her condo day after day with no human contact except phone calls. She has no computer, IPad, tablet, any of the items we take for granted. She is terrified to even sit outside on her patio. I am angry that this excuse for a president has made me hate.

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Ellie April 2, 2020 at 3:52 pm

Same here- my 92 year old mom is in her condo in Florida without internet etc. but it’s waaay better than being 92 in a nursing home or assisted living- they are safer alone. And my mom spends hours on the phone .

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Lizzy April 3, 2020 at 3:56 am

Same here. I have not seen my 87 year old parents for a month now. I am so worried. My mom has a sore throat now, and is actually afraid to go to her doctor for fear of picking up germs in the waiting room. They live in the 16th floor of their building, so if they just want to walk outside of means an elevator ride, often with other people.

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Jill A April 2, 2020 at 12:24 pm

Ditto. I’m angry, heartbroken and ashamed of our government. This is what happens when you elect a president who’s only concern is for himself. I hate to say I told you so, but it’s not surprising…I’ve been holding my breath for the last three years.

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Christine April 3, 2020 at 2:58 pm

I so agree with you. This is what happens to our nation when a con man/failed business man/ reality tv star takes over the White House. Maybe anger doesn’t begin to describe how I feel about his ineptitude.

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Stephanie Mazzon May 27, 2020 at 5:36 am

I am also very sad along with angry! SAD WITH A SIDE OF ANGER is hard !

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Renee April 2, 2020 at 12:31 pm

Right there with you. I had been doing a project that involved journaling before this all stadted going down in earnest amd I have not been able to write a damn thing since my kids got sent home from school at the beginning of March. Although it’s not a mush brain thing (totally legit phrase, btw), it’s that I don’t WANT to write about it. I don’t want to memorialize it. I don’t want it to be a nostalgia trip for my kids to read someday. And i don’t know if it’s anger or denial or anxiety or some combination thereof, but I just can’t do it.

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Carol April 2, 2020 at 6:17 pm

Thanks for sharing your thoughts and experiences.

My parents did not want to talk about the Depression and Dust Bowl days. I would glean bits and pieces every now and again. As children, when we would complain, because we did not understand, a reality of depression life would be mentioned so we could be grateful for what we had. Even as a kid, hearing about the hard times was not about nostalgia, but of informing me of essential skills, attitudes and behaviors that allowed my ancestors to survive. I did my best to learn what I could back then, practice, hone and gain more skills along the way and still keep the learning curve going now as a retiree. I look back at the little they shared of their early lives, saw their frugal lifestyles as adults, not as poverty mindset, but as stewardship mentality. They valued their elders, honesty, preparedness, community and formed formal and informal rural cooperatives to make the best of what they had for the benefit of all. They left a legacy for those watching and prepared us for a better future, if we are willing… The world is different now, but it is imperative we get our lives together, and make a difference. As much as righteous anger, reality based fear and hopelessness are normal responses for the current situation, recognize them and do not let them consume you. They will rob you of your ability to move forward in a positive way.

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Economically Proud April 3, 2020 at 8:04 am

Wonderfully said.
Thank you for sharing the story of your parents and the legacy they left.

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Susannah April 2, 2020 at 12:34 pm

Yep. I am furious and heartsick and utterly disgusted. I know I am so lucky to live in a state (Vermont) that shut down fairly early and our governor is continuing to assess and shut us down further. And I am very lucky to be self employed and still working. I think it would be hard to write a blog post right now. Mine would be full of fury and profanity! But glimpses of you from Instagram let me know you were ok. And that is good.

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A. Marie April 2, 2020 at 12:35 pm

Excellently said, Katy, and thanks as always for your honesty.

I will add only that as a caregiver for a spouse with Alzheimer’s, I’m beyond frustrated with the general lack of support at the federal level and with having to pay through the nose for long-term care insurance premiums in particular (and being grateful even to be able to do that). I do have a few options at the state and local levels here in NY, but the federal government should be taking the lead on this and obviously isn’t. (Interesting, when we consider that we may actually have a dementia case in the White House…)

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Susan April 2, 2020 at 12:39 pm

Thank you for this post. It is good to see that someone else gets it. So many still don’t. Unfortunately there is more blame to go around than just Dump. It started with the worship of the almighty dollar and profit, over people and the greater good, that started in earnest under Reagan. This explains a lot: https://truthout.org/articles/chomsky-ventilator-shortage-exposes-the-cruelty-of-neoliberal-capitalism/ Everyone take care of yourselves. Please vote for someone that will change our country into a country that cares about the least of its people. The poor will be hurt most by this. You can’t tell me they won’t also be looking at insurance when they start deciding to give out scarce beds, icu beds and or ventilators. Sorry for the ramble. I am so worried for us.

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Revanche @ A Gai Shan Life April 2, 2020 at 12:44 pm

This whole situation is completely and utterly infuriating. There are so many people who will be hurt by this unnecessarily because we have a President and administration that is solely and entirely self serving.

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Sandra ONeill April 2, 2020 at 1:04 pm

My only hope is that we may learn something from this, starting with the election in November.

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Gretchen April 2, 2020 at 1:08 pm

I am also angry and have had extreme writer’s block for weeks.

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Katherine Clark April 2, 2020 at 1:15 pm

Me too.
Every Word.
I want to know what I can do to truly help. So many people are pointing out what is desperately wrong.
What do we do now? Yes, vote him out in November, but people are dying now.
How do we get Congress to act to pass DPA? How do we repress the Capitalist urges? How do we help workers of all stripes?
I hate that most of us know this is a nightmare but all we seem to be able to do is be upset and angry. I want to do more, and I don’t know what to do.

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Lisa M. April 2, 2020 at 1:15 pm

First off, yes, there are so many horrible things going on in the world today. It’s okay to be angry/disappointed/disgusted/all the above. In order to not dwell on the negativity, I just sat through a webinar today about reframing the situation, trying to look at opportunities regardless of the ugliness. Heck yeah, that’s what I am going to do! Let’s rise above this nastiness & find the bright spots, however challenging… My frugal list is growing out of control!

Double 5+FF: Spring has Officially Sprung (Along with Covid-19)!

1. Celebrated the change of seasons by packing away all my winter/snow decorations & pulling out my spring & Easter items. Fewer decorations so house seems less cluttered. A no expense change, other than my time.

2. The warmer weather has meant more walks with little dog, a relatively safe activity with the virus lurking if we can continue to avoid speeding drivers. Thankful to have the recumbent stationary bike so able to exercise at home. DH unable to use his gym membership so instead using stationary bike, treadmill & weights in the basement.

3. DH & I are spending lots of time at home (like we normally do TBH) & enjoying series & movies on Netflix.

4. While DH is working from home, I am being paid for not working for a small business. DD is hunkered down at her apartment while her university teaches online. Less gasoline/light rail costs, along with less stress & time saved from commuting. DH & I supported DD’s restaurant employer by ordering takeout after our final tax appointment versus our routine of eating out post-taxes.

5. Original battery in my car was failing & needed to be replaced mid-month (specifying timeframe to avoid “quarantine shaming”.) While waiting made additional mending repairs to my gloves while enjoying a complimentary cup of gourmet coffee, & then used a service coupon that I had printed when I made the appointment. Later made additional repairs to my gloves, as well as reaffixed a toggle closure on a sweater.

6. With bread in scarce supply, took advantage of gas station rewards program to get a free loaf. They offered 15 free bonus points with any purchase on St. Patrick’s Day. 15 points = Free sandwich ($2). Eight grain bread ($2) + free sandwich (-$2) = 0 cost bread. A recent freebie (2-piece white chicken – $3.49) was mainstay of a lunch for DH & I accompanied by homemade coleslaw & clearance rolls.

7. Socialized with friend using a take & bake pizza from Aldi, made own salad to accompany & visited at home (again, during stay-at-home advisement with limits on groups of 10) versus going out as we likely would have done pre-virus.

8. Lots of little ongoing frugalities: Nearly out of shampoo, so emptied several small travel-size bottles into a large dispenser; found 3 aluminum cans while walking little dog; found a cart with a quarter at Aldi; enjoyed a HUGE bag of macadamia nuts gifted from boss after lengthy tropical vacay; found Hawaiian rolls & lemon drop cookies on clearance bakery rack at big box on different weeks; pulling items from deep freeze that need to be used; prepared a surprise mail-in $3 rebate for a toiletry that had the rebate info on the inside of the packaging, a 50% discount; followed up on $10 rebate not received after 12 weeks for DD – company re-issuing card, so provided info for DD to recognize & watch for it.

9. Continuing with the weekly frugal soup/stew plan, Corn Chowder was on the menu last weekend. Used extra time off to prep annual Theresa’s Spaghetti – authentic Italian meatballs & sauce made from scratch. So deliciously oniony & garlicy that it is divided into a 2-day process: meatballs one day & sauce the next day. Most recent: Eggplant & Mozzarella Pasta.

10. Took advantage of a university data breach as an alumna & signed up for 1 year of complimentary identity theft services. DH also signed me up for similar services at minimal cost in addition to his through tax preparer.

11. Recently got gasoline – price a bright spot in difficult times. With long-term .04 cents/gallon discount, cost was $1.76/gallon.

12. Very grateful in these uncertain times, that we are getting unexpected significant tax refunds, along with a property tax refund. Easier to pay in for DD who needs to pay additional taxes. Putting checks in DD’s savings account to cover next semester’s tuition.

In the scheme of things, I am extremely thankful for my long-term frugal lifestyle as many around the world are truly suffering. I have been fortunate with multiple blessings in my life & the ability to focus on economizing, as there are so many folks who lack basic resources & are really struggling to simply get by. My heart aches for them & the challenges they are enduring, not to mention those struggling with physical devastation & the loss of health & life. The only +s in this horrific situation are the acts of kindness & compassion that reflect the basic goodness of humanity.

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Bee April 3, 2020 at 4:32 am

I appreciate your positive attitude and kindness.

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Jackie Krispin April 3, 2020 at 7:21 am

Thank you for your positive post. While I was angry like Katie at first, my feelings have turned to fear. Whenever the stress begins to get to me, especially when I turn on the news (I now limit myself to watching a half hour of national news in the evening), I try to come up with a positive mind-set. My go to’s are:
1. Even tho I’m 71, I’m healthy, as is my 71 yo hubs.
2. I have food, toilet paper and all necessities for at least 3 weeks so I don’t need to go to store (and I did not hoard…just got what was needed when I went to Aldi almost 2 weeks ago.
3. Because I’m not running to the store for every little doodad I think I need, I’m saving money.
4. Still have a full tank of gas from when I got it after grocery shopping. With points, I paid $1.27. Happy camper.
5. Been taking this quarantine Time to clean my crafting space. I don’t think I will have to go to the craft store for another year!
6. The weather has turned to good. Started my spring cleanup in the garden. So thankful for the sun and warmer weather.

There’s more, but can’t think of them off top of my head. I’m praying for all those who work the front lines (you know who you are), because without them we would be a lost nation.

Stay safe, people. And if you figure out anything we can do to help others (besides stay quarantined), please let us know.

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Lisa M. April 3, 2020 at 11:33 am

Thank you Bee & Jackie.

So desperate for hope & goodness, clinging to them to avoid despair. Celebrating those glorious, courageous health care workers who are true heroes in the face of tragedy.

Yes Jackie, how can we help others, even something simple? Found an opportunity today on Next Door – a local resident with asthma living in terror after needing to make multiple trips to different stores in search of tp. I finally figured out tp procurement in our ‘burb, so offered purchase & delivery free gratis when she needs a resupply. Opportunities like this can save our sanity while living in an insane world.

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Sarah April 4, 2020 at 3:41 pm

Our family is donating to frontline foods (www.frontlinefoods.org), a nonprofit that funds local restaurant to prepare food to feed healthcare workers. A double win!

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Lisa M. April 5, 2020 at 6:46 am

Brilliant idea!

Jennifer April 5, 2020 at 11:35 am

Thanks for this frugal list. It was a much needed bright spot for me. It was also a pleasure to read how you how found good things within the bad. This is how I am trying to be for my children in our day-to day activities. Things are tough but we are stopping to smell the roses that we didn’t seem to have time for before. Virtual hugs!

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Lisa M. April 5, 2020 at 12:38 pm

Thank you Jennifer, I really appreciate your supportive words. Even in the darkest hours, there are glimmers of hope. It is critical for children’s sense of security to have caretakers modeling normalcy & searching for goodness, even in the worst of times. The opportunity for strengthened family bonds & shifting of societal values are potential positive outcomes of this unprecedented tragedy we are living through.

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Jenny April 2, 2020 at 1:18 pm

Another RN here. Absolutely agree, Katy, and yes, I feel like a lot of us felt like something terrible for the whole world would happen due to the devil being elected POTUS. I thought we’d be blown up by nuclear weapons or something. He could step down now, under whatever excuse, and things would not be worse, I don’t think. This whole thing is kind of beyond comprehension, and what next?

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Kathy April 2, 2020 at 1:34 pm

My issue is anxiety. Hubby along with many coworkers took a pay cut. His is 20% and is working from home. My part time gigs are gone.
We’ve pared by and discontinued several expenses. However our grocery bill is high as hubby is eating 3 squares a day.
On the plus side I’ve sold a few items via Facebook marketplace. My sister sent me some high end shampoo and conditioner for blonde hair.
I’ve been cooking and looking for recipes online.

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Teri April 2, 2020 at 1:43 pm

Agree.

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Morgan April 2, 2020 at 1:44 pm

Last I checked it is Katy’s blog and so she has the right to say what she wants? She is upset, and understandably so. You’re mad because she’s mad? As a former nurse she has every right to fear for her friends and to be frustrated at the current situation. You are doing exactly what you told her not to do, hating and finger pointing. Just sayin’

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Laura April 2, 2020 at 1:54 pm

My governor has the distinction of being one of the very few who has not ordered a stay at home order statewide or ordered schools to close. Thank goodness local governments are stepping up to do what he won’t but I am so angry we have leaders who aren’t being proactive about this.

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Ruby April 2, 2020 at 1:58 pm

The reason why the nation hadn’t fallen apart is that the majority of Americans are honest, hard-working people committed to doing a good job. Adversity reveals character, so it’s okay to get angry about what this time has revealed but don’t forget to do something about it. My state is saddled with a weak governor who has been late to do anything, but the mayors of the state’s four largest cities — including ours — are strong and decisive, so that’s been a comfort.

Our family has been fortunate that my husband’s employer let him start working from home several weeks ago. He has multiple risk factors, as does the friend who moved in with us in February. I have not yet found work and it is unlikely that I will during the crisis, but that frees me up to be the healthy member of the household who does the shopping.

For frugality, we have not eaten a meal out in five weeks. Every meal has been cooked and eaten at home. I’ve been sewing fabric masks from quilting cotton from my sewing stash. We made homemade hand cleaning wipes from paper towels, Golden Grain clear liquor, distilled water, lemon extract and dishwashing liquid, all of which we had on hand and put in reused wipe canisters. (The Golden Grain was to be used to make shellac for a woodworking project we did not get around to.) We’ve been reading our way through a backlog of e-books. We finally cleaned out a closet that was a dumping ground and set it up so our friend could hang up his clothes. I mended the corner of a little suede handbag with some black yarn bought for 99 cents a skein at the clearance store last year.

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Denise April 2, 2020 at 2:09 pm

Dear Tina

I am English, so I have no axe to grind in the forthcoming US elections. While hindsight will enable us to learn LOTS of lessons on what worked and what didn’t, in terms of various decisions by different governments, it has been shocking to see blatant idiocy at play with Trump. He has repeatedly refused to be guided by the scientific consensus and expertise, and learnings from what has happened here in Europe.

We all have the benefit of taxpayer-funded universal health care systems in Western Europe. The US does not and so Trump should have been taking a more aggressive approach much earlier, to protect poorer people – not “poor” only, as I understand that there are many millions of people who don’t have insurance.

From our side of the Atlantic, there has only been shock and outrage at his stupidity (packed churches by Easter? Has anyone made him look at the Italian situation??) and it will be the disadvantaged who will suffer most.

Simply put, whether trump was a Democrat or a Republican, he would still be a greedy moron, who is too egotistical to listen to more intelligent and more learned experts. He disgraces the office of your Presidency, entirely separately from his politics.

Other than that, goodbye Tina.

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Denise April 2, 2020 at 2:15 pm

The above post was written in response to one by “Tina” which has been taken down. Just so you know that I’m not gone bonkers!

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Katy April 2, 2020 at 2:25 pm

Hey, no judgment on anyone going “bonkers.” 😉

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Jen April 2, 2020 at 10:18 pm

Katy, Thank you so much for removing that Tina post. I was so happy after I read your new post this morning, then plugged along, reading comments. So nice to see like-minded folks on here. But then, THEN, I saw THAT post and I was even more mad. So mad! So glad you deleted it.

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Katy April 2, 2020 at 10:37 pm

No mean people allowed in my clubhouse.

Angela @ Tread Lightly Retire Early April 2, 2020 at 2:11 pm

Anger is right. And major anxiety. And mush brain. Though I do feel now (week 5 WFH for me here in Kirkland WA) that I’m “settling in” to this finally and my brain is semi starting to work again. The first 3+ weeks were especially impossible to do ANYTHING.

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Susan April 3, 2020 at 12:28 pm

Angela, I am in Kirkland, too, although still with mush brain a bit even so far into this whole thing. I am now teaching yoga online a few hours a week, my teens are schooling from home and husband has WFH for a few years now so not much different for him. Although I am not angry (well maybe a little angry as I’ve despised the current administration since 2016), I am certainly grieving for all that has been lost for so many. Health, jobs, normal teenager experiences (my kids), lives.

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Sandy April 2, 2020 at 2:25 pm

I hear what you’re saying and I agree about so many things. Not to get too political, Trump is not the disease itself he is only a symptom of the disease. It was going on for decades before him he is only a blatant symptom of this disease that we have in this country. The drive for money and power in politics has corrupted our entire Society. To where it seems that that’s all that matters. Corruption it’s a very small word for the level of malfeasance and greed that I have seen in my lifetime. As an aside, I am a nurse that works with covid-19 s. And at least in Wisconsin supplies and protective gear have not been an issue. I’m not even sure that it’s an issue in New York. It may have started out that way but I’m not sure that it still is. And I have not seen any need to pick and choose who lives from this disease at this point. We’ve treated everybody equally. and I hope that continues. I think if you want to know what we can do to make things better, I think that you all are doing it every day when you decide to make things yourself, or do things yourself, or when you teach your children how to do things themselves and to care for the Earth. It’s the best thing that we can do. I think things are going to get Rocky financially as the stock market continues to implode. And the best thing that we can do is to survive this and just wait it out. Keep doing things for yourselves and keep caring about our society and our next Generations. We’ll get through this one way or

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Katy April 2, 2020 at 2:34 pm

“I’m not even sure that it’s an issue in New York.” So you think that the nurses and doctors are lying? My former coworkers are being given a single N-95 mark to wear over multiple shifts, and then only for patients with symptoms when we all know that asymptomatic people are contagious.

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Susan Robinson April 2, 2020 at 3:10 pm

“I’m not even sure that’s an issue in New York”……what???

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Alexia April 2, 2020 at 5:31 pm

Supplies and protective gear are absolutely in short supply in Wisconsin. Here in Madison hospitals have started accepting hand sewn masks, which are distinctly inferior to commercially produced N95 masks. I suppose they’re doing that for fun?

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Lauren April 3, 2020 at 8:15 am

Hello from living in New Jersey / worked in New York. I can CONFIRM this is still a HUGE ISSUE!

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Christine April 3, 2020 at 3:14 pm

My daughter is the infection control nurse at a long term care/rehab facility here in Massachusetts. They are so desperate for PPEs that her husband has been fashioning protective masks from whatever he has on hand from his contractor job for her and her coworkers. She cries every day and she is not a crier because she is afraid for her patients and staff. Where you get your information from is a guess.

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Jessica April 5, 2020 at 10:36 am

I am a news reporter in New York. I have the privilege of living in a neighborhood that is FULL of healthcare workers. I have been speaking with them in both a professional and neighborly capacity and I assure you a shortage of gear *is* an issue in New York. It is documented in government, hospital and news reports, and it is also documented in neighborly chats across the street. One of the largest healthcare systems sent out an email to employees yesterday saying that in addition to being low on PPE, they were also low on phentanyl and other IV sedatives and would be sedating patients who were intubated using oral methadone. They have a single week of tests left and thus are not going to be testing their system’s own workers. (This is from an email, sent to thousands of medical staff, by a hospital, not something I have conjured from thin air.) As a medical professional, surely you understand the gravity of these shortages.

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sherri clark April 2, 2020 at 3:28 pm

Preach!

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rose April 2, 2020 at 3:33 pm

Thought of you early this morning when saw and picked up a dime in the street and put it in my pocket. Realized at once I had contaminated my gloves and jacket. Held ‘dirty’ hands at odd angle. Went directly home to garage where put all ‘dirty’ clothing in washing machine, washed hands, face, and dime with soap and hot water. And was stressed all day.
I AM SO GLAD YOU WROTE AND EXPRESSED SO WELL WHAT I AM FEELING. RAGE. THIS DID NOT HAVE TO HAVE HAPPENED AS IT DID.
Please keep expressing your and our rage, then we know you are not sick and we are less alone.
Absolutely a senior. Risk factors. Isolated. Unable to see my grandchildren and children. Unable to get groceries at reasonable intervals at reasonable costs without huge risks. And also super proud of London Breed/Mayor San Francisco for shutting things down before Gov Newsom acted. Super proud of all who are isolating and distancing and helping others like Americans always used to do world wide ….. before.
The PTSD, Grocery-store-phobia, agoraphobia we will see in the future on top of the grief and anxiety and fear we are experiencing now will mark the future.
THANK YOU SO MUCH for writing and truth telling. Please keep it up.

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Jeana O’Connor April 2, 2020 at 3:47 pm

I have been looking for a new blog post for weeks. I guess I’m hoping for some normalcy in such an awful abnormal time. I can always count on you to speak the truth, and I’m glad you were finally able to write this post. This is exactly how I’m feeling. Enraged. Livid. Distraught. Fearful that Trump will try to cancel the election. Constantly wondering which members of my family will get sick. Helpless. But mostly enraged.

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Kathy April 2, 2020 at 3:50 pm

I could have written your post. I feel the same way. I am frustrated that my little, sweet second graders are being denied the fun of our classroom.
My twins sit in their rooms, missing out in their freshman years of college.

My son sits in his room, working on his sophomore year in college.

I can’t get to my elderly parents in another city. I cook for them, as my parents are 85 and 87.

My long term boyfriend and I are quarantined separately as a government employee he considered essential.

I am a high risk asthmatic, diabetic and am terrified I will become a casualty of this mess.

I am terrified to go to a grocery store and unwilling to order in and risk the health of those on the front lines in grocery stores working long hours without adequate protection.

I am angry too.

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Lauren April 3, 2020 at 8:22 am

I too feel all of these things. But you have to eat, and the way I try to rationalize ordering groceries or ordering in – with no contact delivery – wiping everything down – is – SOME of these people are continuing to work because they need the paycheck. You need to eat and they need to feed their families and pay the rent, so while I know this is not good for anyone, and I don’t like any part of it either, think about it as providing for your family and providing for the family that you’re order is helping the pockets of too. It’s the only thing that keeps me a little saner.

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MB in MN April 2, 2020 at 3:52 pm

Sing it sister! I’m with you 200%. I channeled my anger this morning into the following message to the White House.

” Mr. Trump, I wrote to you recently and respectfully encouraged you – for the good of our country – to pivot your words, actions, and tweets to those that are unifying, unselfish, intelligent, honest and consistent. Today I will be more direct: Please stop lying and gaslighting us. Please stop talking about yourself and making this all about you. Please lead this country as a fully functioning adult. While you are boasting about your Facebook and Twitter ratings, covering up your own failings and deceptions, and railing about those who don’t appreciate you enough, there are people dying or losing their livelihoods, people at work on the front lines trying to save lives while risking their own, and people at home trying to hold it all together. Your behavior is lethal and disgraceful (to use one of your favorite words). Enough. Be best. Thank you.”

On a lighter note, perhaps not entirely unrelated, I’ve been thinking about urine. Yup, as in conserving toilet paper. I was hanging onto old flannel pajamas to see what I could use some of the fabric for, and it took a pandemic to come up with cutting flannel into toilet paper-size squares. I use these for #1 wiping only, rinse them after use, and throw them in the washer with other items. I was surprised how absorbent flannel is, doubly surprised at how little urine there actually is to wipe, and triple surprised that I’m actually telling you all of this!

Sending virtual elbow bumps to my friends here. Am so grateful for this community.

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Ruby April 2, 2020 at 4:08 pm

Thank you for that letter. I hope it helps.

Your flannel confession is great! Toilet paper was not seen in stores here for nearly a month, and I was about to sacrifice an old YMCA t-shirt to become washable TP squares when I was finally able to buy a package of the paper stuff two days ago. Still holding that shirt in reserve in case.

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A. Marie April 3, 2020 at 10:12 am

Thanks, MB in MN, for the “flannel squares as #1 TP” suggestion. I’ve got plenty of TP at the moment (I placed my regular order for an 80-roll case just before the s**t hit the fan, so to speak); in fact, I’ve been helping out friends in this department. But I have just retired a 20-year-old LLBean bathrobe with full military honors–and I’m amused by the idea of having the only reusable TP in a Royal Stewart plaid on the block. Gotta take our weird chuckles when we can get them these days.

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Lisa M. April 3, 2020 at 11:15 am

A. Marie – Your reply provided several laugh out loud moments. Thank you for that!

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Patricia Koernig April 3, 2020 at 1:20 pm

Yes, A. Marie, thank your the laugh!
Patricia/Fl

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Nancy from mass April 6, 2020 at 3:19 pm

Thank you for your letter and of course, for the full disclosure of your toilet paper situation! I bought a 24 count pack at BJ’s at the end of February and we still have 10 rolls left. But I’ve gone into the stores three or four times in the last month and every time I’ve gone in I’ve walked The aisle just to see, and it’s always completely empty. Toilet paper, pasta, bread in our area are in short supply. But I’ve noticed sales of yeast have increased almost 500%.

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Lilypad April 2, 2020 at 3:54 pm

As a longtime reader of at least 11 years, I am so grateful to you for writing this.
Sending you a virtual hug from Seattle.

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Kristi April 2, 2020 at 3:54 pm

Thank you for putting in print all that I am feeling. Anger is healthy – and when we get angry we speak up – and that’s when things change. Keep speaking the truth!

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C April 2, 2020 at 4:11 pm

AMEN

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Jill A April 2, 2020 at 4:35 pm

This is her blog. I think she is and we are all allowed to feel and say whatever we want. It’s helpful to many of is even if it doesn’t suit you.

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Isa April 2, 2020 at 4:47 pm

And Michaela is also allowed to say what’s on her mind. And I second it 100%! I also choose gratitude instead of anger (and, no, I am not in a bubble at home without any worries. I am a front line health worker in a Canadian hospital. I still choose to focus on gratitude). To each their own.

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Peg April 2, 2020 at 4:39 pm

You’re not the only one with an elderly parent! My mom is 89 and widowed. For her safety, and the safety of my husband who is also high risk, I can’t and won’t visit her. We live in the least populated state in the country, and we’re beginning to be hit hard, but that doesn’t matter to anyone because we’re not in NY or California or Portland. You still have healthy family members, and even though it stinks that your child can’t sit in actual college classrooms, he/she still can continue learning. Maybe some deep breaths instead of complaining…because honey, if we all started, it’d take down the internet.

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Isa April 2, 2020 at 4:49 pm

Amen!

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GoddessTantra April 2, 2020 at 6:21 pm

It’s not a competition. I don’t think Katy is trying to say she’s in a worst position in relation to her family, she is sharing an opinion on HER blog, I’m sorry you have an elderly parent in a vulnerable position, I do as well, two of them. But I am in no worse a situation or better a situation than you, we are all in this together. Katy is entitled to say whatever she wants, without others belittling her feelings. If her content matter is not right for you, then don’t read it. Everyone is suffering or has had their life changed, let the author speak….do!

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Jennifer April 3, 2020 at 5:18 am

I just wanted to say that I don’t agree with all the things that Katy has said in this post, but, I am anxious and have mush brain alongside her. I am not angry at the POTUS. I am just feeling the anxiety the virus itself has caused. I hurt for those that don’t have the most basic needs met and the trickle down effect this virus has caused. I am trying to put my own selfishness aside because so many have it much worse than me. This fact alone gives me comfort and causes me pain all at the same time. I will be glad when we can all get back to light-hearted frugality. Much love to you all!

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A. Marie April 3, 2020 at 9:54 am

I’m with GoddessTantra and Jennifer that this is not a “who’s got it worst” competition. We all have problems because of this, and I’m glad that Katy has opened up some space for us all to vent.

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JustGini April 2, 2020 at 4:39 pm

Katy – I’m so grateful for your post. There are millions of angry Americans and we have a right to be angry. We have a right to be clear that this is a health crisis that has killed thousands and may a hundred or thousand times that number ONLY because of how it was handled by a totally incompetent President who cared more about the stock market and his hotels than American citizens. We need to stay mad until after we vote Trump and those who have his back out of office in November. We need to stay mad because he’s too stupid and narcissistic to govern today, let alone for four more years. We need to stay mad because many scientists believe that the world has missed the window to end COVID and it will be back next winter, in no small part due to the US response. We need to stay mad so our parents aren’t denied respirators and our children given respirators FEMA failed to maintain so they don’t work. Most of all we need to stay mad because even now, more than 40% of Americans believe everything that Trump says and Fox News echoes, and unless they all die of COVID, God forbid, they’ll still believe him in November 2020.

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Kathy April 2, 2020 at 4:44 pm

Thank you for those of you who are taking care of family members.
One son and wife live 4 hrs. away and other son and wife live 1500 miles away.
So it’s YOYO (you’re on your own) for us. Hubby is working from home. We’re 67 and 71. I’m the one out at the grocery store and pharmacy

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jessica April 5, 2020 at 12:54 pm

Do you have a nextdoor group for your neighborhood? In our neighborhood many lower-risk young people are offering to do door drops of grocery & prescription deliveries to older neighbors. They are seriously EAGER to help, perhaps a similar resource could help you!

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Linda Jordan April 2, 2020 at 4:48 pm

Amen! I’m glad to see you are okay. I’m living in a first world country and I’m sewing face masks for my family and everyone on my street. The world is upside down. Blessings to your family.

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Linda April 2, 2020 at 5:18 pm

Well said, and I agree.

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Deb April 2, 2020 at 5:27 pm

Sad. Truly sad. And disgusting. And not constructive. Go ahead and spew your ugly political anger. When you’re done, put on your big girl pants, act like an adult and attempt to do something constructive. You’ve just slapped half of your readers in the face. I’m truly concerned for your mental health but will no longer bother to read your blog because you are beyond help.

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GoddessTantra April 2, 2020 at 6:11 pm

She hasn’t slapped me in the face, she’s consolidated everything the rest of the world thinks about the POTUS. Even grade school kids shake their head in disgust in my country. Politics aside, his blatant disregard for human life (other than his own) is so apparent, I truly feel for the people of the USA.

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Bye April 2, 2020 at 10:42 pm

It’s HER BLOG. This POS is RESPONSIBLE for the enormity of this situation.

If you don’t like it, LEAVE.
BUH-BYE!

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c April 3, 2020 at 5:50 am

bye!

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Kris April 3, 2020 at 7:46 am

…and good riddance. Katy, you nailed it!

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mary April 3, 2020 at 12:55 pm

Deb. you are so right. Everybody here thinks of themselves as expert with the right to criticizes.

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Jen April 3, 2020 at 7:36 pm

This is Katy’s Blog. This is her space to write whatever she wants. Deb and Mary, you writing in the comments and being angry about what she said is ridiculous. Just unsubscribe. We are here to read what Katy says. If you can’t be nice, go away.

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Laura April 3, 2020 at 7:51 pm

Everyone has the right to criticize, why do you think wouldn’t?

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Christine April 5, 2020 at 2:09 pm

Ditto for you Mary. Out ya go.

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olympia April 21, 2020 at 1:27 pm

We have every right to be furious at trump. Just as we have every right to be angry at those who fell for him, and put us all in this position. You have failed your most basic human responsibilities. Why should anyone ever take you seriously or trust you again?

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Susan April 2, 2020 at 5:28 pm

Gratitude won’t get us any improvements to insure that we don’t find ourselves in this position again. It will take anger to get people motivated to make the changes that we need so that we can have a system that works for all of the people. This situation is such a shock to our economy that here we are bailing out very rich corporations again, that pay thier executives obscene amounts and pay thier shareholders when they could have been saving for a crisis. If we have such a good system why do we little guys have to keep bailing it out? If this goes on until we get a vaccine, unemployment won’t save the economy for the average worker. We will have a race to the bottom economically yet again. I am already greatful for my blessings but I am still mad that Trump lied to us for months when we could have been preparing. (not sending PPE out of the country for one, which is still being done by corps that have it, look it up)(Oh and don’t get me started on the Congress people that sold stock after a meeting on Covid 19)

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Isa April 2, 2020 at 6:09 pm

Susan, don’t get me wrong, I agree that your president is an absolute disgrace….ok, he’s a total idiot! And, yes, things have to change! Also, as a Canadian, we are not (yet) in the exact same situation. But I’m keeping my position that, yes, gratitude is still a valid choice during these trying times, and that running on anger won’t do anything to help us as a person, as a family member. It will only bring us down (emotionally). When I read about being angry at a president that lied and is still oblivious to the truth, I agree. But stuff like being angry because your kid can’t get out of the house? Nope, sorry, that doesn’t fly. The whole WORLD is struggling at the moment. Everyone is being told to stay home. Millions of kids are home, mine included. It’s part of the life we are living right now, and this is not because of one individual but because of a virus that is running it’s course. So, yes , I CHOOSE gratitude. Gratitude for my health and the health of my family. Gratitude for still having a job even if it means having to face Covid head-on everyday on my floors (hospital). Gratitude that I’m able to keep my aging mother safe by dropping off food on her porch so she doesn’t have to get out. Gratitude that the schools are closed and therefore my childrens are less at risk of catching the virus (including my health-compromise child that has a heart condition), etc. It is always a choice.

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Lori April 2, 2020 at 5:33 pm

Grief and anger. Anger and grief. Intermittently interspersed with anxiety, despair, terror, numbness, and overwhelm. I already know 2 people who have died. My former co-workers (I just retired Dec. 31 – yeah just in the nick of time ikr? – not on purpose, I assure you) are all municipal employees in the Health Dept. and the Police Dept. I am worried sick about all of them and out of my mind with guilt that I am no longer in a position to help. I have too many friends and relatives that are health care workers to count, and I have a sickening feeling that not all of them are going to come out of this alive. I might not either, but that would be ok. It’s my loved ones that I can’t stand the thought of losing. I can’t sleep at night. I worry about everybody whose job puts them at risk (including you, Katy!). I worry about everybody who is out of a job. I worry about everybody. I don’t have any answers.

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Heidi Louise April 3, 2020 at 11:18 am

Lori: I do not have any answers either, so will simply send you a HUGE wordless hug. A long one, so you can draw on the strengths you used in your work before you retired that are still in you, and pull encouragement from the good of the people you love to give you hope for the future.

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Beth Ann April 6, 2020 at 1:04 pm

Dear Lori,
I’m so sorry that you are in such despair–and who wouldn’t be? Give yourself a break and know that you did your work with honor and now others are continuing on with taking care of others (health care workers, first responders, etc.). Please take a bit of time to do some self care. Go for a walk or write in a journal. You are completely justified in feeling the way you feel right now. Stay connected online and keep the faith.
Hugs,
Beth Ann

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Alexia April 2, 2020 at 5:36 pm

The people in charge own what happens based on the decisions they make. Trump and his allies have not done many things they could have to slow or stop the spread of this disease. The blood of thousands, and possibly millions, of lost lives is on their hands and you’re damn right I’m gonna point that out. Can’t change history, can change the future. #VoteHimOut #JustifiedAnger

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Marie April 2, 2020 at 5:56 pm

I am glad to you you back, katy. I was worried about your family
I too, am so angry, about how all of this was handled.
We are disposable, he said so!
We are out of work. We got our taxes done anticipating it coming to Oregon.
We did a library trip on the last day, before it closed.
We took money from savings, to buy a months worth of groceries, and animal feed.
I can’t see my grandchildren, one who has a birthday next week. Don’t know when we will get unemployment, am I complaining?
Yes, to live in the supposed greatest country in the world, and no one thought to stop people coming here from other countries, when China had an outbreak!
Now, some states don’t have outbreak as much, so every state has different rules.
We have a lot too be angry about.

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GoddessTantra April 2, 2020 at 5:59 pm

I feel you dear Katy. Thousands of miles away and I feel you. Trump at the least is a universal joke, and at the most is a narcissistic sociopathic lunatic akin to some of the worst, most evil dictators of all time. I feel your anger because I have it too xoxoxox

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Pam April 2, 2020 at 6:40 pm

I agree with every word that you said. Please, please, everyone vote in November and end this long-running nightmare. The only way I went to sleep on the night of DT’s election was to remember how hard many other people have had it through the years. However, I did no know the depths to which this person and his party would stoop; I certainly couldn’t know how screwed up DT does in a pandemic. God, please deliver us from him in November.

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Kate Norlock April 2, 2020 at 6:46 pm

Good post, Katy. I’m happy to be the bearer of the good news that anger does not bring everyone down, and complaining does not have to be productive. Evidence suggests that expressing pain, which you do here, can be a way of reaching out to others, showing that you’re vulnerable and inviting others to join you in vulnerability. It will not work for everyone, and it does not have to. You extended yourself to others and those who acknowledge it and say they share it are better off for having your expression of anger to connect to. People who tell you not to complain were probably raised to believe it does not do any good, but it often does. I am grateful for your managing a post. It doesn’t have to be perfect. And it is an accomplishment to manage one at this time. Thanks.

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Stacey W April 3, 2020 at 7:05 am

Thank you Katy and Kate for saying exactly what I was feeling but did not have the words for.

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Dorf April 2, 2020 at 8:51 pm

Thank you for writing this, Katy. I am angry, too.

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Cheryl April 2, 2020 at 10:45 pm

I absolutely agree with all you said Katy and you have every right to vent your frustration, ’tis your blog and I’m pretty sure that you have the right to say and do what you want, this is still a free country.

And to all those who don’t like what Katy said, I say “bye felicia” and don’t let the door hit you in the ass on the way out!

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Patricia Koernig April 3, 2020 at 12:40 am

I have so much to say, but you have said it brilliantly for me.
Stay well, and healthy.
Patricia/FL

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Patricia April 3, 2020 at 3:08 am

This came at a perfect time in an absolutely horrid time. I reached a wall. A wall made of anger so powerful I couldn’t nearly breathe. You put into words so perfectly. Thank you for being you. For writing as you do.

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Jan Hardy April 3, 2020 at 3:13 am

Katy, yes to everything you said, and thank you for saying it. I’m one of the lucky ones who can work from home & still get a paycheck & insurance, but the numbers of people suddenly unemployed, sick, dying, dead from this epidemic staggers me every day. Your anger is right on point. I hope you can keep writing through this crisis, because we need your words more than ever.

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Tracy April 3, 2020 at 3:23 am

I am also a nurse- thank you for articulating what I am also feeling. Please keep writing, Katy-

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K D April 3, 2020 at 4:32 am

I feel your pain and the pain of others. On top of that I am angry that the Chinese lied about the severity of the illness. I am angry that we are such big consumers in the US that we have allowed ourselves to become so reliant on China. That for so many your worth is tied to your wealth so it’s okay to outsource jobs or pay paltry wages even when your assets are untold billions. I could go on and on. I am terrified of where this is going, that beyond the health consequences (not insignificant) the economic consequences are catastrophic.

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Mary April 3, 2020 at 4:50 am

Yep I hear you and feel the same way.

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Jann in Maine April 3, 2020 at 5:25 am

Also a nurse here.
I mourn what has been done and not done with emphasis on the latter.
So many emotions swirling and fear for my fellow health care providers and what this must look like for them every day on the front line.
I pray that in November each of us remembers our lack of leadership and compassion that has been shown for our fellow Americans and the elderly. We are apparently disposable which I guess makes 45 disposable as well.
I am angry and so very sad.
Please all take this very seriously.

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Shannon April 3, 2020 at 5:35 am

Yep. All of this and more. I had a moment while standing in line hoping for meat to come off a grocery truck since the counter was empty. This isn’t Black Friday or something fun/collectible that I want and am voluntarily hanging out for – it’s freaking groceries! I fully understand Americans are spoiled but we’re supposed to be a first world country yet you wouldn’t know other than by how much our leadership tells us they’re doing a fantastic job. No. Just no.

Like your parents, my Dad is scared but probably one of those deemed an acceptable casualty as he’s fighting the effects of Agent Orange from Vietnam so in the long run, if the virus took him out, he’d save the government’s bottom line since his medical care is already expensive for them. These are PEOPLE, *US CITIZENS* – no one, outside of a medical trial they willingly sign up for, should be an “acceptable ” death.

Off my soap box now and back to looking at his and hers haz mat suits…

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Ann April 3, 2020 at 5:41 am

AMEN ! Scared and angry! Husband had a heart attack in February, still having issues….we have to leave our home to go for blood tests, other tests, and I keep thinking what if he gets this Covid??? Just made masks because NOW they are saying “yeah, maybe you should wear masks.” It is just so sad….but I keep having hope. Sending healthy wishes to you and your family…hang in there !

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Bee April 3, 2020 at 6:15 am

It is a difficult time for many and this pandemic is affecting all of us in some way. However, I have chosen not to give in to fear and anger. I am doing my best to maintain my sense of humor and optimism. I focus on what I can control and on whom I may help.
I don’t believe this will be easy time. We have never faced anything like this before as individuals or as a nation. None of us will come out unscathed. Things could be better, but things could also be much, much worse.
I know some of you will think that I can be positive because I am blissfully ignorant. I assure that I’m not. I read and watch a variety of news sources with differing political agendas. Heck, I have even watch many of the news conferences from the White House in their entirety which was not easy.
I also live in Florida which is greatly impacted by COVID-19. I miss my friends and family. I miss my life. I’m concerned about my community, the nation and the world.
To make matters worse on a personal level, I have developed an ear infection and cold-like symptoms. My doctor has asked me to self-isolate, and I am taking a rather large dose of antibiotics. However, I have not yet been tested for COVID, because I do not meet current testing criteria fever, shortness of breath or exhaustion. I suspect that my illness is just a result of seasonal allergies, but I am taking my temperature 3 times a day. I have concerns.
So no , this not an easy time, but this too shall pass. I am looking forward to brighter days. Wishing you all good health and peace.

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MB in MN April 3, 2020 at 8:39 am

Bee, I appreciate your wisdom and optimism. Sending positive vibes from Minnesota to Florida for your good health!

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Lisa M. April 3, 2020 at 11:08 am

Bee – Make that 2 of us from MN sending good health wishes southeasterly to you. Hoping that you will be feeling well very soon!

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Patricia Koernig April 3, 2020 at 1:25 pm

Feel better Bee. Sending you love, and encouragement from South Florida.
Patricia

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Bee April 6, 2020 at 11:51 am

Thank you all for your kind words and kind words. I’m feeling fine – no fever and my oxygen saturation is high. It am sure that it was just an ear infection, but scary in the time of COVID.

I just wanted to add one more thing to my rather lengthy response above:
As I re-read Katy’s comments as well as though of her readers. It occurred to me that we all are experiencing the Covid Crisis differently. We come from 50 states with 50 different state governments, demographics and economies. We all have a variety of jobs and are in different economic situations. Some of us live in densely populated areas and some of us live in small, remote towns. We are all “made” differently and do not react to events the same manner.
Although I do not agree with all comments put forth over the last several days, I appreciate that we all have a different perspective. As individuals and as a country, we need to stop believing that people who do not think just like we do are idiots. Only by opening our hearts , ears and minds is the nation ever going to heal our divisions. The minute someone’s feelings or ideas are labeled wrong. The conversation ends.

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Beth Ann April 6, 2020 at 1:12 pm

Dear Bee,
Thank you for putting into words what I have been thinking. We have to listen to one another in order to move forward. We have to become less judgmental and less divisive. Only together can we move ahead. It has to be! And, for anyone who thinks that politics should not be part of the discussion, it is because of politics that we are having the discussion. Sad, scared, angry, and lonely–that’s how a lot of us feel, no matter where we live or what our party is.

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M April 9, 2020 at 1:11 am

Bee,
Thank you for your perspective.
M

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janine April 3, 2020 at 6:43 am

Thank you Katy for this heart- felt post. Also I am grateful for so many long time posters for sharing your thoughts – I’m looking at you Ruby, MB from Mn and many others. My family is trying to cope with our changed reality and determined to vote out the current leader. We have a good governor as do many other states and for that mercy I am grateful. My ;problems are slightly different than many others, I am the elderly mother of single men living alone and I am fearful about who their caregivers will be if they contract Covid-19. My husband , like so many posters is elderly and has a compromised immune system. Keeping him home or at his isolated office is a real challenge! Tomorrow we venture out to get much needed groceries because the delivery service seems to be on strike. Wearing glasses and gloves. We will pray that we come through this pandemic and economic crisis a stronger and SMARTER country!

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MB in MN April 3, 2020 at 9:00 am

Thanks, Janine. Looking at you, too! It’s funny, I don’t know who any of you are in a physical sense, but feel so safe and accepted in this little community.

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Danielle April 3, 2020 at 7:01 am

I concur 100%
Thank you for your honesty.

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susanna d April 3, 2020 at 7:23 am

Thank you for this post. I agree with everything you wrote – and you expressed it beautifully.

I’m angry, oh hell yeah I’m angry, but that’s good. Anger mobilizes me to do what I can to change and help the situation, whereas fear could paralyze me and prevent me from doing much of anything.

My heart goes out to all of you who have elderly loved ones dealing with isolation and fear. To those who have children who are living through something we never imagined our children would face. To each and every one of us as we deal with this, one day at a time.

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Stacy April 3, 2020 at 7:46 am

I will say that I heard an interesting explanation of why PPE is in such short supply. I guess it is because of our quest to save money. China hoarded what they were supposed to make for us, and a company bought out a company that was making portable ventilators in order to make more on their bulky and more costly designs. It made me rethink the global economy in crisis, and it makes me so thankful for America problem solvers right now. I hope that we do rethink what products we make in America for the stability of our country. And I also wish at this point American lawmakers realize we suck at emergencies. Tornados, hurricanes, terrorist attacks, pandemics, mass shooting: we are not prepared.

That enrages me as well as everything Katy has said. I am thankful for her post and I hope more people with a reaching voice do the same so that we can elect people who will not let this happen to us again.

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ESusanne April 3, 2020 at 8:06 am

Thank you Katie for your honesty. And thank you to your readers who share their points of view and experiences. i love this site & always look forward to new entries. This posting is really what i needed to see today.

For the past few days, i have felt such anxiety and fear. i think about all the people who are suffering. And when i think of Trump (and Jared) and his whole corrupt gang, i feel so angry and impotent. i hear myself spouting such hatred towards them.

this is the first place so far where people are expressing things i’ve been thinking and feeling in the last few days. I don’t want to be negative to my friends, husband, or sister because i’m not sure they can handle the real possibilities. but if a person doesn’t have an outlet for fear, anger, anxiety, and frustration, those things will sneak out anyway, possibly hurting someone else.

I don’t see that our economy will ever be like it was before this pandemic. Maybe that’s a good thing because everything was so unfair (just a few super rich people, vanishing middle class, more and more have-nots, terrible pollution, etc). But a lot of people will be left with a whole lot less of what they need.

But what if Trump gets re-elected? Some people seem brainwashed by him. other people may not be following what he does/not do. I mean, how could voters like someone in power who makes fun of a physically disabled reporter? or admits to sexually assaulting women? or *never* takes responsibility for anything that goes wrong? or brags so incessantly or takes credit for things he didn’t do or lies *all* the time, etc.

My husband and i are in our late 60s. we live on a small farm. both of us have physical challenges. but i think we may be starting to figure out how to work around those limitations more effectively. For instance, one of our new laying hens flew out of the chicken yard yesterday. so my husband and i watched and will re-watch very helpful YouTube videos on clipping a chicken’s wing correctly. that’s what we’ll do to keep our hens safe in their yard.

i hope you will all keep sharing. there are probably plenty of readers like me who don’t tend to post comments but get so much out of Katie’s comments and those of her readers.

Please take good care.

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MB in MN April 3, 2020 at 9:03 am

Ditto! Reading Katy’s post and sharing our comments have actually lessened my stress. I think the effect is similar to that saying “Shared joy is a double joy; shared sorrow is half a sorrow.”

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Vickey April 5, 2020 at 6:33 am

“Shared joy is a double joy; shared sorrow is half a sorrow.”
MB, I hadn’t heard that before, but it certainly rings true! Thanks for that nugget.

And thanks to Katy, Kate, and all the supportive community members here. This upstate New Yorker is so grateful to have stumbled into this nest of the similarly incandescently angry.
Now if only my 87 y.o. MIL and her postal worker daughter could be made to understand that seeing each other every evening is hazardous to my MIL’s health.

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Christine April 4, 2020 at 1:46 pm

Well said ESusanne. Many of us are thinking these things about tRump and his henchmen. And I so agree with you about him making fun of the disabled reporter…only the lowest of the very low would do that. I think he’s emotionally stuck in eighth grade, not that it’s any kind of excuse for him. As to his self professed “grab them by the ______” , I don’t understand how any female or any one who has respect for females can continue to follow this man(?).

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Judy April 3, 2020 at 8:38 am

Wow Katy! I’m glad you and your family are ok. I was concerned knowing you
are a nurse and your husband a first responder. You expressed yourself quite
eloquently. I have certainly gone through a range of emotions during this crazy
time. I was hospitalized with pneumonia just as this pandemic was beginning to hit our state. The wonderful, compassionate care I got in the hospital made me so appreciative and concerned for all our healthcare workers and their families. When I see what hospitals and staff are going through now it brings me to tears.
I also have concerns for my daughter who is a flight attendant and has been
flying up and down the west coast for months with lots of coughing people and
not allowed any protective gear. She herself has underlying health issues as
do her husband and son. That makes me angry. While at the same time there’s concern for the economic impact on so many people and industries.
This country will certainly be changed when this is over. Whether for better or
worse I guess will have to be up to our people, because we cannot rely on the
federal government at this point. I have moved from anger to total disgust at
the way this has been handled. Then I have fear when I hear people who claim
this administration is doing a good job and OMG what if this incompetent person gets re-elected. We absolutely cannot survive four more years. Now
China and Russia are sending us medical equipment. What has happened to this country in less than 4 years?

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Laura in SoCal April 3, 2020 at 8:54 am

There is a lot of blame to go around. I’m angry at our government over the last 30 years for prioritizing “free trade” over national security in the most basic way. The fact that 95 % of our medications and/or medication ingredients are made in Asia is disgraceful and I don’t understand how that isn’t a national security risk. I guess that if our cell phones and TV’s are cheaper, it all worth it, right. I’m angry at Jerry Brown (Previous CA Governor-Democrat) for dismantling the CA Medical Stockpiles and Mobile Medical Hospital capacity that Arnold Schwartzenegger (CA Governor-Republican) set up after the H1N1 flu of 2009-2010. I’m angry at the Obama administration for the same thing…they didn’t replenish or maintain the stockpiles. I’m angry at our current administration for not being proactive at all. Now they say that China lied about its numbers…well, duh. They should have been preparing months ago…just in case. Ahhh!!!! Rank incompetence all the way around.

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Bee April 4, 2020 at 5:28 am

Thank you. Although COVID-19 is a “new” virus, the current situation is the result of 30 years of policies by our federal and state leaders —not just the Trump Administration.

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livingrichonthecheap April 3, 2020 at 10:11 am

We are all angry – I live in Canada and had to wake up to Trump asking 3m not to supply our country with N95 masks….I am livid. In a time when countries should be helping one another this is ridiculous. At least our Canadian scientists and companies are working on alternates right now. When the chips are down you really get to see people’s true character (not that you and I didn’t already know what Trump was like but may others will now). I was born in the USA but will never step one foot there now again – even though I still have relatives there

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Christine April 3, 2020 at 3:22 pm

Canada has always been our friend to the North. Don’t let tRump stand in the way of returning. Hopefully he will be long gone in November.

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Bee April 4, 2020 at 7:12 am

I know it won’t change the result. However, the situation with 3M is much more complicated than what one might think. There have been several articles in the Wall Street Journal as well as other reputable sources regarding this. 3M has not been a good corporate citizen and has been selling to the highest bidder. A mask that should sell for less than $1 American is now selling for $7.

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Kate from Buffalo, NY, USA April 3, 2020 at 10:26 am

Agreed!!! Fearing for my parents, my grandmother, my brother (who isn’t in great health and is considered “essential” as an employee of a big box store, and just got exposed to COVID). Mad that our government has taken such slow steps. Grateful that I live in New York state but so scared for our New York City folks. Thanks for posting this, Katy.

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Vickey April 5, 2020 at 6:38 am

Hello, Kate from Buffalo. Vickey from Chautauqua County here. Glad to see another upstate New Yorker (there are a few of us here.) Sending you virtual hugs (cuz those ARE safe!)

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Tami April 8, 2020 at 5:37 am

Hello from Genesee County! Stay well, friends.

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Cheryl April 9, 2020 at 9:36 pm

Hello from Ontario County! Right near Canandaigua, NY.

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Marilyn April 3, 2020 at 10:49 am

Thank you, Katy, for overcoming the mush brain and writing again. I am grateful for small favors and top of the list is this blog.

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Heidi Louise April 3, 2020 at 11:09 am

Yes, indeed- Thank you for this place to identify and articulate feelings! I pride myself on being rational, yet the feelings must burst out first.
It is possible to be grateful and angry at the same time, or in quick succession: grateful for what I have, and angry for the circumstances, and frustrated for feeling helpless or guilty.
As I contemplate the next election, I plan to give more attention to choosing people for Congress than I ever have before. Find people who know how to cooperate to get things done, who know how to find and listen to experts, who respect scientific thinking, who have a healthy relationship with the press (though that will always be somewhat adversarial), who can admit when something is unknown, who can think long range and set priorities, even when it is more popular to think short term.

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Dicey April 3, 2020 at 11:20 am

Thanks so much for posting, Katy. You have always kept it real and I’m really grateful you didn’t sugar-coat your feelings.

Count me as one of the many who were concerned by your absence. I was happy to see a few posts on IG that at least let me know you were alive. I hope you and your family continue to be well. I know your husband is a front line responder, extra thoughts and prayers go out for all our healthcare providers, and the people who support them.

I will not waste any words on T, except to say that Jimmy Kimmel has nicknamed him PINO, President In Name Only. Let’s hope it sticks through November.

My husband and I have been sick with may or may not have been Covid-19. We had lots of varied symptoms, but we never had shortness of breath. We agreed not to burden our medical providers unless and until we got to that point. Happily, we never did. No way to know if we had CV-19, but my energy did not return until Day 15 of complete zombie rest.

I have a FTIGF – Five Things I’m Grateful For, except I think it’s going to be way more than five:

1. My brother works for Costco and he’s still healthy, but he’s a severe asthmatic, so I have reason to worry. He and his team are working around the clock to keep the stores stocked. They are unsung heroes in my book.

2. I am a Pantry Principal Girl, and have been since Amy Dacyczyn days. My family used to make fun of me, but my well-stocked larder has been a godsend. No trips needed for TP, disinfectant wipes, paper towels, detergent, bleach, etc.

3. No trips needed for food basics. DH recovered faster than I did and has shopped for perishables. He wears gloves. (He’ll be wearing a mask from now on, because we had a few of those on hand, too.)

4. DH needed a part to finish a project at home. He walked to the hardware store with gloves in his pocket. As he approached the store, there was an employee out front spraying everyone’s hands with disinfectant. DH said he had gloves and the employee responded that he’d spray those too, as mandated by the store owner. God bless them!

5. Now that I am better, I have cleaned out, defrosted and inventoried the contents of our upright freezer. Next up is the refrigerator. We have plenty of “ingredients” on hand.

6. I have done at least ten jigsaw puzzles, all of which were thrifted/gifted/recycled. DH and I have played hundreds of rounds of cribbage together. We figure we already have each other’s germs, ‘cuz we sleep in the same space, ya know 😉

7. We moved MIL to a nearby Board and Care in December, when her pal, Al Z. Heimer, became too much to handle. The owner understood this crisis instantly and put the facility on lockdown. Her family lives upstairs. They are the extra hands she needs and every one of then is staying put at home.

8. She called with a list of personal toiletry items my MIL needed. I had everything in stock at home and was able to porch deliver them the same day. The other supplies MIL will need in the future were ordered on line and have also arrived, so we will be ready for the next call.

9. Care facility owner is also a stocker-upper. She had just finished her monthly shop when she heard about the virus, so she went out and purchased her whole supply list again, before the panic. She has plenty to tide them through for a good, long while.

10. We are so grateful that MIL and her fellow “guests” are safe and well cared for. MIL and her new friends have no idea what’s going on, which is a blessing.

11. DSS’s birthday is tomorrow. I have everything on hand to make his favorite meal. Since my energy is returning, I may make an elaborate birthday cake for him, too. He is off work, but still getting paid, at least for now.

12. I do not have the energy to sew masks just yet, so I gathered all of my grosgrain ribbon, bias tape, elastic, and fabric to give to a friend who is cranking them out. I put them out on my porch two days ago and she will pick them up later today.

13. When I feel up to it, I am going to take an extra white sheet and use it to make miles of bias tape. It is much needed and I know how to do that, in support of others who are doing the actual sewing.

14. DH’s job is considered essential, but his firm has determined that his specific job function is non-essential, so he is at home, with pay. Should that change, he has plenty of vacation time banked and will be using it as needed.

15. I am a fan of the FIRE movement, but I had the goal to retire early decades before the movement existed. unlike much advice given to that group, I believe in having a big, fat emergency fund. This belief was scorned by many younger, aspiring folks, but I just ignored them. I am so happy I did because…

16. The first day I felt up to it, DH and I walked to the post office and mailed checks to seven people that I know are struggling. I am humbled, proud and grateful to be in this position.

17. I haven’t had the energy to even make phone calls for weeks, but now that I do, I’m happy to learn that most people I know are respecting the quarantine, coping reasonably well, and continue to be healthy.

18. Finally, google BloomEnergy if this link doesn’t work. They figured out how to fix old ventilators and are refurbishing them like mad. Heroes in my book. https://www.bloomenergy.com/ventilators

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Lisa M. April 3, 2020 at 11:50 am

So fantastic to read your journey from illness to recovery. Thank you for #16 on behalf of those fortunate 7 recipients who were blessed by your compassion.

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Lisa M. April 3, 2020 at 11:53 am

Sorry, meant as reply to Dicey.

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CarolineRSA April 3, 2020 at 12:25 pm

I feel your pain! For so long it seemed we in SA had the monopoly on embarrassing leaders and non-existent leadership (“HIV doesn’t cause AIDS” etc). While Ramaphosa is certainly doing us proud, we are also facing a coming PPE shortage. This is worsened by misuse by civilians (RN/midwife here), who just won’t STAY AT HOME. I’m horrified by the lax adherence to lock down! The attitude seems to be “wear a mask and go about your business”. Worried about our largely at-risk population, our fragile economy, and the curve in general. Scary times…

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denise vick April 3, 2020 at 12:32 pm

I have been angry for 3.5 years. I don’t mean for this to be cute or trite. I have literally been angry for 3.5 years. Here’s hoping we have better days to look forward to.

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Lee April 3, 2020 at 4:17 pm

Exactly.

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Nancy from mass April 3, 2020 at 12:37 pm

Hi Katy, I was so glad when I went onto your site today and saw a new post from you. I was concerned because it had been quite a while since you posted last. (Although I’m curious to what Tina had said.) Hmmm
I agree with you 100%. I feel so sorry for the people in this country who are going to die because of our inept president in his even more inept family. It just blows my mind at how screwed up everything is and how many people are dying. I stop watching his stupid rallies a.k.a. briefings,At the beginning of this week. I just couldn’t stand to hear him talk anymore and claim how he’s the number one person on Facebook (who gives a shit) I find that it’s taking me longer to fall asleep now, I’m having a very weird, vivid dreams, plus I’m waking up more often now during the night. This is just terrible. Just terrible..
I’m thankful that three weeks ago, my employer told everyone to start working from home indefinitely. And they rolled it out globally the next day. (I work for a large global company) but I’m one of the fortunate ones. Most of my family members except for a handful, are all laid off now. Construction workers, bus drivers, teaching assistants etc. I have made some masks for family members to wear and the few times I’ve gone out in the last few weeks I’ve worn mine. My neighbors and I have been trading food, right now I have a bag with some red bliss potatoes and biscuits on my back porch and my neighbors going to bring over a bag of yellow squash that she has. A local produce distributor has offered to do curbside pick up for fruits and vegetables in my town. I ordered a bunch from them earlier this week and plan on ordering more next week. I feel terrible for the people in nursing homes who probably don’t understand completely why their families can’t visit and why they aren’t allowed to hug. I know that no hugging thing would’ve been huge for my mom. She was a big hugger. My son and I actually don’t even hug anymore and we talked about how sad that is. But we just can’t take a chance. I’m all he has left.
I’m glad our governor is a good one and plan ahead to close things down. I worry for the people in the south and out west who’s governors don’t have the foresight to close their states down. And I feel so bad for New York City.

Stay safe and healthy everyone and vote this jack ass out

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Texasilver April 3, 2020 at 1:20 pm

My mind must continue to work. I am one of many teachers of higher education that had to convert to on-line class. My students were stressed but grateful that we paved the way for them to complete their semester. I am focusing on the positive aspects of my shelter-in-place situation.
1. I am grateful to still have my job.
2. I am learning some new computer skills that I did not know about before.
3. I see more families out walking & playing in the park near my home.
4. I am saving $ since I choose to stay at home. (Trying to convince hubby to do this also to limited success.)
5. Eating down the food in the freezer. Husband likes to eat out. Now he must eat at home.
If I still worked in a hospital I would march off to work as usual. I have weathered many epidemics. Drew blood, started IVs on HIV patients in the early 1980’s. Took care of patients w/0 knowing they had drug resistant TB. Staff found out at times after pt went home & final lab results posted. The list continues. I wash my hands & stay calm.

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Jackie April 3, 2020 at 3:18 pm

Thank you! I felt so alone. Thank you!

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Lee April 3, 2020 at 4:15 pm

I think I’m over the anger phase and am well into the mourning phase. Thank you for not sugar coating how you feel. Trump is a piece of garbage and I have no use for the dumbasses who disagree with that assessment.

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c April 4, 2020 at 5:37 am

Anger, saddness, fear, gratitude, awareness of my privilege, the injustice of privilege.
Our business is hanging on by a thread. Wealthy customers don’t seem to understand why we wont go into NYC and pick up the goods they’ve purchased from galleries. Friends and family who live in the outlying counties of NYC are paralyzed as the wave reaches closer to them. My immediate family is insulated on our five acre “homestead” tending to chickens and the kitchen garden- busying myself with yardwork and house projects to keep this anxious energy at bay.
I am able to work from home as the classes I teach have all been moved online, but the summer term has been cancelled and that means an income can’t be relied upon.
The enormity of it all often sends me into a subdued state of shock. Is this history? Will I be telling my grandchildren about this with a tone of melancholy?
I see neighbors pulling together, sharing eggs and tools and resources. The kid’s teachers lovingly creating tutorials and videos and google hangouts for their classmates. I have a running group chat with my mom and sister sharing bad news, good news and quarantine memes- this might be the most we’ve connected in years. Old students have reached out to chat and catch up and vent.
We will ride out this storm. We will vote. We will be grateful. We will rise again.
with love.

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A April 4, 2020 at 7:50 am

As a Canadian, I have watched the current U.S. administration with a mixture of shock/horror/disbelief. I have no idea why those who elected him thought that a “businessman’” would be better than a politician at running a country. The logic, or lack thereof, boggles the mind. There will be those of you who will say it’s none of my business, but you are wrong, this affects the world, and I sure hope November brings a big change, for the sake of my American neighbours, friends and family, and for all of us.

For the time being, I am grateful for the following:
1. I have a job where I am working from home, so my income is not affected.
2. My husband had cancer treatment a couple of years ago, and is not going thru it now, when the health care system is so stretched.
3. We get updates daily from our elected officials, who I think are doing a great job at keeping us safe, and informed, and are not blaming other governments for this situation.
4. The weather is getting warmer, we can still enjoy the outdoors, while social distancing.
5. We have plenty of food and supplies at home, and are enjoying spending some time together, and are getting some jobs done around the house that we have been avoiding.
6. My one good friend who has the virus, is at home, improving every day.
Blessings to all of you, and your family, I hope you stay healthy.

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Mary Beth Danielson April 4, 2020 at 7:52 am

I’m late to respond because when I first read Katy’s posting my feelings splatted like the eggs I CRAVE to throw at so many of our politicians. I’ve been pissed at bad politics since the early 70’s, but this beats all. Now we will have people dying and with bad luck, I will be one of them (counting on not becoming a statistic, but anyone born in the 50’s needs to get their head out of the sand).
I have been writing all my life. My website can tell you where. Nowhere where I got famous or rich, that’s for sure.
Curiously, the pandemic and the criminal foolishness that got us here has unleashed my writing. I have written (very short) stuff every day for three weeks.
I care a LOT about frugality, since what we buy and don’t buy is about our values and I am passionate about values. The one we have and the ones we don’t and how this plays out in our lives.
So some of what I am writing about is frugality, but mostly I try to write a public diary of things I am experiencing in my particular life, that might be a springboard for others to notice what’s happening in theirs.

Yesterday – Quarantine Diary #21 – I started with my feelings about your blog, Katy. So far two NCA readers have commented; agreeing that your post is fierce and right.
If people want a place to react to this stuff we are living through, I’d be honored if you would check out my website. My husband built it from his passion, Drupal computer coding. No advertising, no links. Just me writing and others responding. I personally read and accept or reject every comment.
PS: My friend Franc (my age) is cyber meeting a new guy in the middle of all this so we have hints of romance happening in the comments.
https://www.marybethdanielson.com/content/quarantine-diary-21-432020-besides-angry

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Deb April 4, 2020 at 1:48 pm

Katy, I just want to thank thank thank you for being open and honest. You have said what so many of us feel. I have tried so hard for three years to not express my feelings about Trump and this administration. But it has now reached the point where people are dying – and that was my exact fear all along – that he would mishandle something so badly that people would die. We MUST use this as the call to mobilize, to use our anger to get people to vote in November. The gloves are off and we cannot let this dangerous man continue to ruin our country.

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Pattilou April 4, 2020 at 2:44 pm

Thank you Katy for this post. I also am extremely angry and worried, for a lot of your reasons and more. I know one person who has died and the brother of a friend has also died. I also know a number of people who are or have been sick with this virus. I pray every day for their recovery and that I will not get the news of another loss.

I worry that my brother will be intubating Covid patients. I pray for his safety. I worry that he is alone right now because he has had his wife, who is high risk, go to stay with her brother. I worry about my niece’s family and the fact that her husband, who is a doctor at a hospital, will be living in a camper in the driveway in order to keep his family safe.

I worry about all healthcare workers who do not have – AND THEY DO NOT HAVE – the proper equipment to stay safe.

I have lost my job and with that, soon enough, my health insurance. We can only hope and pray that the organization I work for will be able to survive this.

I am angry that I am an at risk individual and am on medication that I will never be able to afford without healthcare.

I am angry that I have become terrified to even talk at a great distance with my neighbors. I am also angry that picking up groceries curbside and washing and sanitizing is extremely stressful.

I am angry that I am quarantining alone and worry what will happen to me and my pets if I do get sick.

I am angry at the people who still do not get how serious this situation is and continue to congregate.

And most of my anger is focused on the ineptitude of this horrifying administration.

So I will make sure that I vote and I will work hard on mobilizing others to do so. We can endure no more of this. I will pray for my family and friends. I have and will continue to donate what I can for the making of masks for our healthcare workers. I will cuddle my dogs and enjoy the fact that I have them for company. They give me a purpose. I will use the gift of the internet to see my family and friends. I will take care of my body and mind as best I can so I can remain as healthy and strong as possible. I won’t give up! Please stay safe everyone.

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Christine April 5, 2020 at 2:16 pm

I’m so sorry to hear that you lost your job and along with that, your health insurance. Please take care of yourself and I’m wishing the best for you and your loved ones to maintain good health.

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Pattilou April 7, 2020 at 8:32 am

Thank you Christine. Wishing the best for you and yours as well and to all who are part of this community.

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Christine April 7, 2020 at 1:29 pm

Thanks Pattilou. I appreciate it.

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Dee from MA April 4, 2020 at 3:31 pm

Katy, I’ve been reading your blog for years but haven’t commented until now. (My bad, I know!) Your recent post propelled me to respond to say you are not alone! I am so angry too! You have echoed what we all feel. Please know your NCA community is fortunate to have you and a place to share these feelings. I am also a healthcare worker and also fear for our patients and coworkers on an hourly basis but somehow we have to maintain optimism as best we can. It’s hard to find the energy to do that sometimes though. Please know we are sending you “hugs”.

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Cheryl April 5, 2020 at 1:32 pm

Oh pu-lease Rachel.

Katy has a childish attitude about believing things should go her way? Um..wrong.

After all that has been said and done these past 3 LOOOOOOONG years, anyone who still supports the wackadoodle in the White House, needs a reality check.

I say step back…nobody really cares if you read this blog or not. Be my guest, cut off your nose to spite your face.

I, for one, will continue to read this blog and take comfort that I am not alone in my feelings. There is strength in numbers.

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nancy from mass April 6, 2020 at 4:32 am

For those who are upset that Katy, on her own blog, voiced her anger over the current management (or mis-management) of this crisis. it is her blog and she has a right to voice her opinion. if you don’t like it, you can stop reading her blog or skim over the parts you don’t want to read. you don’t have to agree with everything she posts to find wonderful people on this blog. I have an ex-SIL (a former nurse) who thinks this is a hoax (because she lives in a county in the middle of nowhere with no cases) or that people like Cuomo are making a big deal out of this virus. she is extremely active on facebook. i largely ignore her posts – because i can.
even if Katy’s opinion didn’t match mine (and it does), if i didn’t read her blog, i wouldn’t have been able to silently cheer on Bee’s son while hiking the AT or PCT. I wouldn’t know Ann-Maries struggle with her husbands diagnosis or get tips from Down Under.
and, i have a story about the person running the country. in 2008, my husband was a walking scorer for a charity golf tournament that the idiot was in. the idiot tried to cheat, the scorer wouldn’t let him and he spent the rest of the round trying to get the scorer fired (it’s a volunteer position). he told him “look, i cheat on my wife, i cheat on my taxes, who are you to tell me i can’t cheat at golf”. that is the person running our country. that is the person who, although is not a doctor, is telling people to take medication that can possibly kill you. that is the person who said in february that it was a hoax. if you want to keep following him, that is your choice. if you want to praise him in your comments to Katy, i will skim over your comments.

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Lisa M. April 6, 2020 at 6:17 am

Agreed Nancy. I read blogs all the time where I do not agree with everything that is written. That does not mean that I would write a disparaging remark or judge the person writing the blog. Reading for useful information & ignoring what is not is a very simple solution.

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Christine April 6, 2020 at 2:15 pm

Nancy, thank you for sharing your husband’s experience. It’s disturbing but not surprising. I am thinking of all the women who came forward with their experiences of sexual attacks by him, the Union workers in NYC who were never paid for their hard work by him, the astonishing numbers of lies he has spewed during his term (please, please…just one term). If even one pair of eyes can be opened that have been trained on their Dearest Leader of the Cult and instead focus on the truths surrounding him, it’s a win. The dishonesty is reprehensible.

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ouvickie April 6, 2020 at 10:16 am

I feel for everyone here dealing with this situation, especially those who live alone, are caretakers for family or friends, the healthcare workers, retail workers, janitors, etc. Who are all out there on the front line as soldiers in what feels like a war. It makes me mad, but it also makes me want to cry and I’m so sorry for all those who’ve lost their jobs/incomes, etc. It’s very sad.
I have a feeling this is, somewhat, how my grandmother felt raising 5 children during the depression, by herself with no income, other than what she could raise and sell on her farm. She never drove, so she was dependent on others for anything they needed from town. It’s remarkable that she and her children survived through it all.

My anger was sparked in January, when we started learning about what was going on in Wuhan. I couldn’t believe that travel from anywhere outside of the country wasn’t immediately stopped. The cases in China, at that time, had already reached into the several thousands.
I work for a large, public University and, at that time, the holidays had just ended and students, staff and faculty were coming back on Campus from everywhere in the world.
I tried then to raise the level of concern , through our Campus newspaper and other public posts that were just beginning to bring the subject of the virus up.
Nothing – everyone seemed to be turning a deaf ear to it. The ONLY thing being done back then was some people were being scanned for fever in a few of the international airports in the U.S.

So basically, for the next few months – through most of March – when I stated the fact that no one was paying attention, we had colleagues who had actually been teaching in Wuhan and they were coming back to the U.S., I was being labeled paranoid, racist, pessimistic, etc.

Given that we’ve gone through some pretty terrible epidemics and a pandemic in the U.S. before, I couldn’t believe the level of non-concern and the lack of common sense our government was showing – at every level – for what was coming straight at us. Especially when it came time for Spring Break and it seemed no one in authority saw how big of a problem that was going to be, when students and families were travelling all over the place, exposing themselves and everyone else to this disease.

I’m not a racist and I wasn’t trying to be racist, or pessimistic. I was truly frustrated and I still am that no one, in authority, seemed to care.

However, I have to tell you, I feel very blessed that we live a rural county, on an acreage and my daughter and grandchildren ended up here during Spring Break with us and are now living here with us, until things change for the better.
The University sent us home to work, before Spring Break, and originally we were supposed to go back to work on Campus today, Monday, April 6th.
Now we are officially in a pandemic, so we are working from home for the foreseeable future and the students working online, many of whom will be graduating, but there will be no graduation ceremony, until at least December.

My husband is in the high risk category, but he’s still having to go into work every day. I’m just praying he doesn’t get sick.

I appreciate this blog very much, Katy. We are all clearly frustrated and trying to deal with it all the best we can.
I have learned a very valuable lesson – never take anything or anyone for granted.

A {{{BIG HUG}}} for all of you and prayers of healing, comfort and strength. Thank you all for you posts, it really helps to communicate with everyone during all of this mess.

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Marianne April 7, 2020 at 4:32 am

100% that our government has become a total disaster that I don’t even think FEMA could help them. From the start they all did a little too little, a little too late. At least we all know now that the government will do little to help anyone in any disaster from Katrina..to this pandemic. Until we vote all the losers out, assuming we can vote in peeps who will work to try to make the country better there won’t be any change. The minute this virus hit China a “doctor” should have been in charge of handling it in the US. Makes sense huh?

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Economically Proud April 7, 2020 at 11:17 am

Very few politicians are your friend. Most of them have their own agendas and the people are not a part of it unless they need your vote or support to further their goals. The folks in Washington & in most state governments now are a mess, and looking out for themselves, not you. If you get your physical & mental health in order, and your financial well-being taken care of you will not worry so much about what they will or will not do for you. You need to take care of you and yours, especially now. They will not rescue you.

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Kristen April 7, 2020 at 11:34 am

I have the same struggle, I am angry too. I have to force myself to read less news because it doesn’t help. I also get angry at everyone whining being bored while there are people dying and then I am angry at myself because some have never been taught how to live without leaving the house constantly and really need to do what they can to have a good positive mental health. I am scared for high risk people like my parents, one week before we locked down my father was hospitalized for congestive heart failure, we have him doing so much better now, but if he gets this virus and he needs hospitalization, will he get the medical care? Probably not. I am also selfish and wonder if I get this, will I be leaving my kids alone? I am not in a high risk group, but every time I get sick, I get really sick. Last strange virus I received from my kids left me hospitalized for two weeks, gave me double pneumonia, and took me months to get back to “normal”. Frustrating times which make it seem like our “regular” activities are what we shouldn’t be doing.

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AuntiAli April 7, 2020 at 10:55 pm

Thank you Katy for writing out what I have been feeling. I watch Andrew Cuomo rather than the President. I live in NJ and our governor has been very pro-active. My breaking point was last night when I saw on the news that that hunkin’ huge Navy ship – The Comfort – wasn’t accepting any Covid-19 patients and was just about empty of patients. I started to cry…and remembered it was time to take my meds. I’ve lived by Amy D’s pantry principles too so while my family may have laughed at me prior for my stock of 32 tubes of toothpaste along with toilet paper, shampoo, conditioner, paper towels, etc. they aren’t laughing now. Oh and my stock of Lysol wipes. Dh is working from home in the finished basement. I’ve been a stay at home person for a couple of years now. The state is on lock down and it doesn’t bother me a bit. Dh and I are compromised and hope that our dd doesn’t bring home any cooties from her essential job at the liquor store. I will make homemade no sew masks for us – saw the video on YouTube. I feel so sorry for all the people who have lost their jobs. It’s very surreal to see on my local newscast how empty Times Square is. My mall is shut down, movie theater, as well as businesses in my tiny town. No rush hour traffic. Dh does like his commute down the basement stairs. Everybody please stay at home. When my daughter comes in she washes her hands, then takes a disinfectant wipe and wipes the faucet, door handles and storm door handles.

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Virginia Allain April 9, 2020 at 7:18 am

It’s hard for many women to identify our feelings of anger as we have been conditioned throughout our lives to stifle that. We have a right now to be angry as hell. Thanks for expressing that. I need to let mine out too as it is currently depressing me and we have a long way to go yet.
It didn’t have to be this hard. We didn’t have to see this many people die in the U.S. Greed in our leaders and in our government and in big corporations has led to this situation being as awful as it is.

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Alison April 9, 2020 at 1:12 pm

I’m glad you wrote what you did, Katy. And judging from the number of comments, so are a lot of other people. You’ve built a supportive community and are able to give voice to things we all want to say.

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Marci H April 10, 2020 at 4:13 pm

Dear Katy,
You have been “there” for me and my family for many years that I have been reading NCA. You have been encouraging and inspiring. I wish I knew how to give you hope right now. But, I don’t have the answers, and I share your anger. Know you are not alone.

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KM April 10, 2020 at 7:41 pm

Katy, I was thinking of you the other day. I haven’t checked in on the blog as much in the past year or so, but I was thinking about a lot of things, including budgets and being more frugal. I knew you would have some fantastic insight, as I’ve always enjoyed your social commentary. Thank you for bringing tears to my eyes, helping me release the anger and heartbreak I have felt the past month. My family will likely be fine, but many will not, healthwise or financially. I’m thankful to live in a state who has done a good job (Washington, in my opinion), and I’m frustrated by a lot of things, but overall happy how my community is taking care of each other. I was thinking about the language around “hero” for our medical professionals and how damn unfair it is for our doctors, nurses and medical staff to have to work in these conditions. How private equity is corrupting our hospitals. And of course, how our national leadership is continuously failing them. Be well, and I am sending warm thoughts to your son, daughter, husband and parents.

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Lisa H April 11, 2020 at 3:05 am

Thank you so much for this. I’ll never forget the post you wrote after the 2016 election, it was such a relief to have someone write honestly that something unthinkable had happened while others went on posting recipes. For three years many of us have been holding our breath, waiting for this generation’s Pearl Harbor or Cuban Missile Crisis to happen knowing that this crew of corrupt and frivolous people weren’t up to the task. Now it’s happened, and keeps happening every day as they continue to botch the response, and his supporters STILL don’t seem to understand what they’ve done. That’s where my anger is centered, the voters who embraced or overlooked his racist campaign and then continued to support him at a level that all but 1 republican senator was too scared to vote for his impeachment. Please people, do not split your vote or throw away your vote on an independent candidate in November. There is no wiggle room, no room for error, republicans have proven themselves too corrupt to lead, period. Save what’s left of our country and vote them all out. And to every single person who “held their noses and voted” for Trump or didn’t vote at all in 2016: you are responsible for this, please at least have the decency to feel remorse.

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tia April 11, 2020 at 9:25 am

I’m not angry but it has been weird. I had just sold my house and everything fell through on my moving into another place so I decided to travel and look for another place. I camped in the mountains and when I got tired of snow and cold I went to the beach. mmmm fresh seafood. Then when spring breakers showed up I went back to the mountains. I wasn’t really up on the news, didn’t even noticed the time change until it seemed awful light outside for 8 pm. Then campgrounds started closing. So I took my son to start his AT trek but it was closed too. I would find an open campground and it would soon close. I finally had to find a place to shelter in place. It was strange doing housing business in parking lots and trying to find food to eat. And bathrooms! And by this time the shelves in stores were bare. I finally got into a place. One of my keys was for an owners closet and when I unlocked it I found tons of toilet paper, towels, clorox wipes, hand sanitizer and soap.
Today I read that the most polluted cities in the world are now experiencing fresh air, blue skies, and stars at night after the lockdowns!
But in China were things are starting to go back to normal the pollution levels are slowly rising again.

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Christine April 13, 2020 at 7:14 am

Tia, thanks for the interesting tale of your particular experience during the Covid19 pandemic. Couldn’t have been easy but in a sense it must have been somewhat peaceful being insulated from the news every day. I’m glad you’re safe and healthy….and what a find with the closet full of paper goods! My husband joins your son in the people disappointed about the AT closing. He was set to start back out on more section hiking this Spring but must put his dreams on hold for perhaps another year. Maybe they will meet out there! Take good care.

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Shevaun April 12, 2020 at 2:25 pm

Hi Katy,
Totally selfish request:

I completely understand how you are not in the mood or emotional space to write blog posts now. But you HAVE created a community here in your comments section. How many of us follow each other’s lives and support one another! Even if you can’t write, which I totally understand, could you maybe once a week or so start a new blog post so we can check in with each other?

Your text could even be “Yup, still mad. Comment below.” or whatever. We love you. And we love each other. Please keep this space open for us. There is no where else where we can gather.

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MB in MN April 13, 2020 at 5:24 am

Shevaun: Well said! I second this. I feel oddly adrift without a regular check-in with my virtual posse.

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Lisa M. April 13, 2020 at 7:11 am

Same here, Shevaun & MB. NCA is the 1st site I check after opening emails. Missing it dreadfully…

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Ellie April 14, 2020 at 11:02 am

Katy – What Shevaun, MB and Lisa M. say is very true. I enjoy your blog, but I especially enjoy keeping up with the virtual friends I have “met” here through the comment section. A weekly blog check in would be especially appreciated at this time.

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Jana Kay Ringle April 13, 2020 at 12:11 pm

I am angry also. For all the reasons you mentioned and more.

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Jill A April 15, 2020 at 3:26 am

Still angry, sad, scared…I will post a frugal five if anyone else wants to join in.

1. Staying home has really decreased my spending. I’ve never been a huge spender but this is an eye opener. I have everything I need food, a roof over my head and bills are paid. I realize how fortunate I am.
2. I’m enjoying cooking and baking for the first time ever. In my boredom it’s actually something to do and we look forward to meals. I have been forced to use what I have and very little food has been wasted. I spent a total of $9 on take out in the past month. Huge savings
3. I spent a day making a photo album on Snapfish with my 2019 photos. I used a 65% off coupon and was able to order it inexpensively. It was a nice low key day spent as I’m experiencing insomnia because of high doses of Prednisone.
4. My car insurance will be discounted by 25% for April. Every little bit helps.
5. I’ve been repairing small things myself around the house. Hanging my laundry to dry and the other usual things.

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mary April 15, 2020 at 4:21 am

WRT “Anger about the saccharine “medical care workers are heroes” narrative that shifts the attention away from the why of how scarcity of personal protective equipment (PPE) was ever allowed to happen.”

healthcare is a for profit entity and like every other for profit entity they work on JIT inventory – only the predicted inventory is purchased – all businesses have a responsibility to study supply chains.

Car and pharma industries typically look at multiple geographic suppliers to ensure product is not at risk during production.

its a business lesson primarily and one where cool heads and novel approaches will prevail. we have chosen to adopt a single use policy on ppe and rarely does a facility look into reusable and decon-able products.

$0.02 is mine

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Kristen | The Frugal Girl April 15, 2020 at 4:39 am

I am curious about reusable products for hospitals. I know there’s so much waste that happens in medicine, but I’ve always thought that it was sort of unavoidable due to sanitation reasons.

Is it the case that there are reusable products, but that hospitals, etc. find it too expensive to sanitize them?

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Heidi Louise April 15, 2020 at 8:29 am

I have no knowledge of hospital product, reusable or not– just want to throw in how much I feel for hospital laundry workers. Even in the best of times. Heat, bleach, soaps, chemicals, hot water, steam, blood, fluids, germs, sorting, lifting, pressing, folding– presumably while wearing masks and plastic gloves.

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Mary Beth Danielson April 15, 2020 at 12:01 pm

A friend’s husband is an anesthesiologist – he literally intubates people for ventilators. He says he has ONE mask that has his name on it, he leaves it at the hospital at the end of his shift, it is sanitized by UV lights and, he says, he is supposed to keep using this single mask until August. This seems unfathomable to me. 1. That there would only be one mask for him and 2. if they CAN do this, why up until now was everything disposed of?

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Caitlin April 15, 2020 at 5:58 am

Thanks for putting this into words and publishing it. I think a lot of us are feeling similarly – I know I am. I am just filled with rage and sick to my stomach at all of the “happy” narratives that this is just relaxing time with our families and that it’s better for the environment. I call BS. My heart aches for those who live alone, those who are at particular risk, and those who are called to essential jobs every day – who are often the underpaid and marginalized among us. It’s all so infuriating, and while I appreciate the stimulus check it also reveals how truly optional/fictional our monetary policy is and that our system does not need to be set up this (massively unequal!) way!

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Heidi Louise April 15, 2020 at 8:39 am

Caitlin: I appreciate your phrase “how truly optional/fictional our monetary policy is”. I’ve been trying to sort out how I think and feel about the “Economic Impact Payment” that was directed deposited for my husband and me last night. We are low-income mostly retired people, not marginalized or underpaid, and appreciate the money, but–.
At least a direct deposit doesn’t have any propaganda we have to read decorating the check, just the notation on the online account that it came from the IRS.

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Christine April 16, 2020 at 2:25 pm

His signature on the checks seems to be just another form of campaigning while he can’t travel the country. That and the postcard I received a few weeks back titled ‘President Trump’s Recommendations’ … about Covid19. In the corner in tiny letters was CDC. Also his daily campaign speeches not so cleverly disguised as updates about the virus.

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Heidi Louise April 15, 2020 at 8:48 am

And finally, as I am furiously posting this morning, even though I of course would like to see new stuff, I send thanks to Katy for keeping the blog pages up at all!
As I have seen with other bloggers, being a writer at this point in time is hard. Time and energy are particularly precious, personal commodities that aren’t following the usual rules.
And even if she isn’t writing new content, she still has to monitor what we are posting.

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Mary Beth Danielson April 15, 2020 at 12:04 pm

Well, here I am again. This crisis has unleashed my writing – I’m on Day #32 (or is it 33?) of a Quarantine Diary. Some of my stuff is about frugality. A lot is what I see and feel and an invitation to others to join in. People comment. A conversation is going on.

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Tia April 15, 2020 at 9:32 am

Hey,thanks for the tater tot waffle iron idea! I put half tots and half fish sticks-delish! Sooo crispy. Next ima gonna try chicken nuggets. I may try cooking everything I the waffle iron.

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Momma L April 15, 2020 at 11:00 am

I love the waffle iron uses! Ironically, when my waffle iron broke a few years back, I didn’t buy another one, thinking I could just make pancakes from now on. Your “use what you have” thinking is ingrained in me now. 🙂

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Debra April 16, 2020 at 1:59 am

I read this post when it first appeared but couldn’t respond. I too was on the look out for some normalcy as I have none in my life. I’ve been too sad/depressed/angry/annoyed/appalled/eviscerated/numb/dumfounded to respond. I watch the news and shake my head. And shake my head some more.
I envy those of you who are optimistic. I am not. I have been a glass half empty girl my whole life.
I’m a psych nurse. You’d think I’d have some immunity to the current crisis in nursing but no, I work in a large psychiatric pavilion and my unit, because of it’s size and single rooms has been turned into the covid positive/covid rule out unit. The hospital proper does have an ICU and ER, so they see the worst of it, but we’ve had Crisis Staff (our screening section, large, staffed with social workers, therapists and a few RNs) come down with covid from the patients.
We have to ppe up every shift, at first wearing gowns and masks for days but now just for one shift. The problem is with my patients; due to their acute mental illnesses, they have a hard time following the isolation rules such as wearing masks and gowns when they come out of their rooms. Those of us who work on the unit are pretty freaked out. But I am more freaked out for some of my past coworkers, now working as nurses on ICU, all under 30 who have asked for info on making out their wills.
I am so sad I can’t hug my granddaughters (ages 7, 6 and 5), or my kids, or play “peanut butter toes” (a weird version of this little piggy) or be their “jungle gym” or “Nana slide.” I spent part of my retirement money helping them buy houses close to mine so I could see these little monsters every day.
I live with my mini Doxie Lil, and was already sad because I had to have her brother Lou put to sleep 2 days after Christmas. So I have no human hugs, or human touch at all. It sucks.
For the first few weeks of this “shelter in place” I just worked, slept, ate and watched the news, the constant, soul sucking barrage of news that was destroying every little ounce of hope I had. I then made masks for my family, then for staff at work and their families. Now I’m back to working on Girl Scout Camp quilts for the grandmonsters, while wondering if/when they will go to GS camp.
I’m 58, and have been saving hard for retirement, only to see a large percentage wiped out of my 401k, Roth IRA, and investments. I mention this because I would like to retire some day soon and not be broke or a burden on my kids. I don’t plan on traveling the world or even being a snow bird, I just don’t want to be terribly poor.
I can’t even address the current President issue. I despised the man before he was president. I saw no reason a businessman from New York should be asked his opinion on celebrities etc, then have a stupid reality show, and then when he ran for president, I thought, there’s absolutely no way anyone can think he could be a good leader. And he isn’t.
He’s a classic narcissist as defined in the DSM V TR. His need for constant aggrandizement and adulation is mind boggling. And I have friends who still think he’s wonderful. I. Just. Can’t.
So Katy, I agree with you, and I read the comments, and I know you probably can’t get back to writing regular NCA stuff, but I miss it. I miss normal stuff of any kind. I miss noisy Girl Scout meetings, lunches with my daughter, hugs from my friends, kids playing in the park, being at the library, hell I even miss traffic jams on the highway. I miss being less than 6′ away from people. I miss chatting with strangers for no reason at all. (my daughter says I talk to EVERYONE, but when you see people practically naked 5 minutes after you meet them in your job role, you kind of get good at talking to everyone.) Strangers barely look at each other now.
I feel so isolated…….

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Kristen | The Frugal Girl April 16, 2020 at 5:28 am

Just wanting to send you some virtual hugs. Being isolated and without human touch is so hard, and I hope that things get better so you can see your grandkids soon.

Thank you for the work that you do as a nurse. <3

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Debra April 16, 2020 at 2:04 pm

Thank you Kristen

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MB in MN April 16, 2020 at 5:52 am

Debra: Reading this made my heart hurt and my eyes well up with tears. I’m so sorry for your pain. My heart goes out to you and everyone experiencing the isolation, hardship and despair this pandemic has wrought. Although I was born an optimist (and if I could have talked at birth, I would have shouted hello to everyone), this situation is unbelievably awful and it’s healthy to feel as you do and to express it so well. I find that my disgust toward the president and his administration is exceeded only by my utter bafflement at those who still support such a horrible human being and awful leader. I will be holding you close to my heart in all the days ahead.

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Debra April 16, 2020 at 2:07 pm

Thank you MB. Many people are isolated. For the first time I’m glad my Mom passed a few years ago.

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