Jennifer

Covid-History Item Type Metadata

Age

51

Date

02/10/2021

Location

Mamaroneck, NY

When did the impact of COVID-19 first occur to you? How did your reaction to COVID-19 change between then and the first case in your town?

In early March 2020 my cousin was in the hospital (non covid related terminal illness) and we visited him with no restrictions. A week later we had his funeral at the Church and we all wore masks. We had a luncheon in a restaurant afterwards and we were the only patrons in the entire place. Later that night I went to dinner for my nephew's birthday at another restaurant in a different town and it was packed. A week later was my birthday and I spent it alone because I work with the public and was afraid of getting anyone sick. My mother did insist on dropping off some dinner, but we couldn't even hug.

How is your life different now than it was before the pandemic?

I live by myself so outside of work, where I still physically go, I do not spend time with people except on occasion. Even then we keep our distance. I could count on 2 hands the number of hugs I've had in a year. I watch a lot more tv than I ever did. I am a supervisor. I have had to help my staff deal with their fears while simultaneously dealing with my own. My parents are elderly. I used to have dinner with them twice a week. We no longer do that. I can see my father going downhill because he has no stimulation. He used to go to lunch with his friends. He used to teach classes to the retired people. He is so isolated now. My nephews have been part time in school, part time remote, they are A students, but they are tired and strained. One nephew just tested positive. A bunch of us have been exposed and had to quarantine. I only go grocery shopping once a month. My elderly father had to have open heart surgery and only one person could be with him. Ordinarily my whole family would have taken turns. We were lucky however, I know many people who were not allowed in the hospital with their loved ones.

How are you feeling? What are you doing to relieve stress?

Prayer, Reading the Bible, Coherent Breathing, Meditation, Chair yoga, going for walks. Trying to cheer up friends and family. GOING to Church. I am going to die when God decides and not one minute sooner.

What have you noticed has changed in your community since the outbreak? What has surprised you?

Loss of hope. As this has dragged on their surge capacity is depleted. A lot of people are not centered and operate out of fear.

Are you a business owner who has had to close? If you are still open, how have you had to adjust how your business operates?

We now offer service virtually and pick up through the window. Focusing on community wellness.

Are you an essential employee? What do you do? What precautions are being taken at your workplace? What precautions are implementing at home?

On paper? No. In reality? Yes. I have not stopped going to work except when I had to quarantine for exposure. I am a librarian. We have plexiglass and masks. Custodians disinfect. We stay 6 feet apart.

Are you an employee who has been laid off or furloughed? Were you able to get unemployment? Were you able to retain your health insurance?

No

Are you working from home? What adjustments or challenges are you experiencing?

I work from everywhere now. There is no down time. What do you do when a staff member calls on a Sunday to say they tested positive? Or their child tested positive?

Do you have children at home? How’s it going?

No. My son is a 20 something living in NYC. I've been afraid to be near him because he works at home, but I am always around people. It's caused distance between us that I HATE.

If you’re a student, was school canceled? Were you able to complete your studies online? Do you think you’ll be back on campus in the fall?

No

How are you using social media, the Internet, or digital platforms during the pandemic?

To keep in touch with family and friends. Call out political hypocrisy. Elected officials who keep restaurants closed, but go out to restaurants in other places. Don't wear masks, send covid positive patients into nursing homes with the elderly. Positive posts to keep community upbeat. Lots of people isolated, depressed , suicidal.

Did you have to postpone any major life events? (e.g. Graduation, wedding, major birthday) What did you do instead?

I LOVE to travel. My brother's family moved out of the country and I had planned on visiting him. Not going to happen. I miss my nieces who are now older since I got to see them. I'm single. I can't imagine starting to date people in this mess.

Do you have animals? Did you adopt a pet? How have they impacted your day?

No. I wish I did.

What positive things did you contribute to or notice take place?

Flexibility of my staff. Willing to try new things to aid the community. Focusing on staff wellness: physical, emotional, spiritual and financial. Casual clothes are totally acceptable at work now.

Did you or someone you know contract COVID-19? What was it like?

My nephew. 2 staff members. Mild cases thank God.

If you lost someone during the pandemic, how did you celebrate their lives?

We had a funeral in a Church when a family friend of 40 years passed away. She left a husband and 5 daughters who I grew up with and we couldn't even hug. I had to wave at them and make heart signs with my hands. Really???!!! That's what shared grief looks like these days. My friend's mother was in the hospital. My friend wasn't allowed in. Her mother was on the first floor and they opened the window so they could talk. Her mother was hard of hearing and so it wasn't much of a conversation. All she could do was repeatedly yell to her, "I love you mom!!!" Her mother later had a heart attack and died and that was my friends last contact with her mother ever.

What do you wish you knew before the pandemic began?

I would not have put off travel.

What would you want future generations to know about the 2020 pandemic? How would you recommend they prepare for it?

We took a lot for granted. Always thinking we'd be able to do things later, putting off pleasure for later in order to get more work done. Eat dessert first.

How do you think this pandemic will change how we behave going forward? What will the “new normal” look like?

So many people have lost it I'm not sure we will get back to the old normal.

Is there anything else you would like to add that hasn't already been asked above?

This has had a great impact politically which will have to be studied historically. President Trump was blamed for the pandemic, although he got the private sector and public sector to work together and develop vaccination in record time. President Biden is supposed to be the savior who is going to fix this. So far it doesn't look to good. On January 22, 2021 he said, "There's nothing we can do to change the trajectory of the pandemic in the last several months." Interestingly the only 3 people I know who got Covid have all gotten it since President Biden took office.

Dublin Core

Title

Jennifer

Subject

COVID-19 (Disease)

Publisher

Southern Adirondack Library System

Date

02/10/2021

Contributor

Southern Adirondack Library System

Rights

Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

Language

English

Type

Covid History

Identifier

12399239818

Coverage

Coronavirus Pandemic

Citation

“Jennifer,” Leaving Our Fingerprints on History, accessed January 19, 2022, https://fingerprints.sals.edu/omeka/items/show/322.

Output Formats

Geolocation