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Love in the Time of COVID-19

Last Monday, January 4, 2021, my wife tested positive for COVID-19. Her symptoms have been relatively mild, nasal congestion, a cough, partial loss of her sense of smell. She has had a dose of infusion therapy, and a return visit to the doctor yesterday, where she learned she had strep throat and pneumonia in both lungs.

We are isolating at home, my wife in the master bedroom hunkered down, chronologically watching every episode of Criminal Minds on NetFlix, the rest of us, two millennials and one seven-year-old are keeping our distance from my wife and each other as best we can.

And it’s hell.

One of the really debilitating things about COVID-19 is its power to separate people from their loved ones at the very moment when the realization of that love, the flow of concern from one to another, is most needed and cherished. Those of us on the “outside” think of our patient all the time just as she thinks and worries about us.

I put the picture of the meditation corner on the top of this blog because I have found that in the craziness of this moment a few minutes of quietness seem to bring some calm.

And we need all the help we can get.

Cabin fever, isolation, cut-off-ness, these are the new norms the pandemic has brought us. Just at a moment when we were most divided as a nation, COVID has attempted to block our ability to reach out in love, not just to a sick family member, but also to people at large.

COVID is not going to win. We won’t let it. Rather, the lesson we have learned and are learning better each day is that there is no power greater than love and compassion.

If only we can embrace that truth.

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