We Are More Than Just Numbers

I have heard and seen information recently that indicates that the percentage of people who have died from this pandemic isn’t that high and not really a problem. Or that it is less than those who die of the flu. Or that the numbers are stated without much thought to them.

While statistically the low percentages may be true, each number is a person who has passed away. Let’s please not forget that. Sadly, I think we do or it doesn’t register that a loss of human life is what that means.

I have to say that making such light of this has been bothering me for a while.  Another comment that has bothered me is — it is what it is.  Sorry, but to me that just isn’t good enough.  We can and should be doing better; much better.

Each of those people have loved ones who are grieving and whose lives will never be the same. Each of those people touched others throughout their lives. And sadly, many of them may not have had a chance to say goodbye.

I truly feel for the loved ones who didn’t have that chance. I was fortunate to have had that chance when my husband passed away unexpectedly. I cannot imagine the current way of things.

For those of us who have lost loved ones, we know the pain of loss. We know that the loss is real and has to be dealt with each day. We know how much it hurts and wouldn’t wish that feeling on anyone.

We are now at more than 160,000 deaths in the United States. That is a staggering number to me, but yet it just doesn’t seem to register with a lot of people. That number is more than the population of my hometown.  It is more than packs Neyland Stadium on a day of college football, at least pre-pandemic.

Please remember that behind the numbers there are actual people. There are families who are reeling from loss and will have to rebuild. There are people who are suffering and trying to make sense of the loss. There are also health workers who did all they could but it still wasn’t enough.

Let’s do what we can to take care of each other. Let’s do better for ourselves, our families, our children, our communities, and our loved ones.  Let’s please do what we can to stop the spreading of this damn virus.

My family will wear our masks, stay home when we can, be cautious and careful when we are out, and practice social distancing.  It is not fun and often inconvenient. But to me, it is worth it if it will help us stay healthy and help those we love stay healthy as well.

Things I Miss, Think About, and Worry About

Hi and Happy August. I just noticed that I didn’t write any blogs at all in July.  Sheesh.  I think this is because of a combination of being very busy with the family business, taking care of numerous things for our family, figuring out school options, being stressed out with the pandemic life, and not being inspired to share my thoughts.

I don’t know about you but these days I have a hard time gathering my thoughts in a coherent manner. I have a lot of worries about friends and family and these tend to cloud my willingness to write. And, I have so much on my plate to do that the writing and the thinking of that tends to take the back burner.

Certainly something I miss is my writing and the inspiration to do so. But we have been dealing with a lot over the last two years. The loss of my husband, the grief of that, and now everything that goes along with the world-wide pandemic. It is just too much some days and I have to take time to deal with that. I am thankful for my faith and all of my loved ones.

Here are some of the things that I miss, think about, and worry about as we continue to deal with our grief and our life during this pandemic. We still are primarily at home and limiting our outside activities and how many people we see:

  • I miss hugging my parents when we see them
  • I miss seeing and being with my brother and sister and their families
  • I miss holding hands and praying before a meal with loved ones
  • I miss a room full of our family for birthday parties and other gatherings
  • I miss our beach trip with family
  • I miss the beach house pictured above, the front porch, the table, and the neighborhood
  • I miss time with our in-laws and extended family
  • I miss seeing smiles
  • I miss meals on the beach house front porch
  • I miss meals out with friends and family
  • I miss going to church and singing in our choir
  • I miss having our friends over and talking for hours
  • I miss attending my son’s chorus concerts
  • I miss in person meetings
  • I miss going to the library and browsing the selections
  • I miss professional haircuts
  • I miss my husband’s voice, laugh, and hugs
  • I miss civilized debates without hate or malice
  • I miss people’s ability to agree to disagree
  • I miss having a day out for fun shopping and lunch
  • I miss not worrying constantly about my loved ones
  • I think about and worry about my nieces and nephews who are going off to school very soon, or who will be working.
  • I think about the fact that I am not able to grow old with my husband
  • I think about my son not having his dad there for his graduation and other milestones in his life
  • I think about and hope that soon life will be something that I can again recognize
  • I think about and am thankful that I have a faith in God/Jesus who loves me and has helped me through the worst pain
  • I worry about my sister, my sister–in-law, my uncle, my cousins, and several friends who are teachers and will be going back to school soon.
  • I worry about others in my family as they work outside the home and come into contact with people who may or may not be masking up.
  • I worry about my son’s school systems and all schools as they reopen during a time when so much is unknown.

I suppose that I am still more likely to see the bad in a situation and know that it may not turn out the way that I want to. That is tough and something that I continue to deal with. Ever since my husband’s unexpected passing, I know that the answer to a pray isn’t always what I want. It certainly wasn’t in that case. I hope and pray that I one day have the answer as to why that happened.

I pray that all of these loved ones will be safe and protected and that nothing will happen. I try to remain calm, but I have to admit, at times, I break down and have a cry about it.  Having those cries does help, as does reading my grief devotional book, my Bible, talking to my family, and reading notes from friends.

Along with all of these negatives, I have to share that I am so blessed to be able to work at home so I can be with my son as he starts online school. I am blessed to have a support system of people who have helped me through so much struggle and strife. I am blessed to have a faith that has sustained me in the darkest hours.

I hope and pray that you too have a support system, a faith and the ability to take care of your family and loved ones. If you are so inclined, please share some things that you miss, think about, and worry about.

I pray that we can be there for each other and build one another up. I pray that we can respect each other and learn about each other.  I pray that we will always love.