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    Distinguished Community Member Earth Mother 2 Angels's Avatar
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    Oct 2006
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    Unhappy Fear of Flu

    ((((((Hugs to All)))))) ~

    After watching a local news interview with a Mother discussing the death of her healthy 26 year old daughter as a result of this current flu, I began developing a serious fear of flu. I have that fear every year, but this year it is more pronounced, because this strain is virulent and worse than any strain in a decade. Moreover, the flu shot doesnít really affect this strain.

    I ordered anti-viral masks on line, which are supposed to protect up to 99% against the flu and other viruses. Iíve worn a lot of masks in my lifetime, and these are top notch. Jim will wear these masks, when he has his MRI and CAT scan and to his doctor appointments, and infusions whenever they start again.

    We are restricting visitors, including John now. He was here on Monday to turn Jon, and he put on the anti-viral mask, then told us that he had a ďscratchy throat.Ē Agh! He said it was likely his allergies. But John works with the public every day, has a large and close knit family, goes to concerts, church, movies, restaurants, and other places with crowds. His 15 year old daughter is a local volleyball star, and sheís around kids all day. His wife travels a lot. All of this puts him at risk. Although in all the years we have known him, John has never had a cold or the flu. But this year is different, and heís nearly 50, and things change as we age. We just canít risk it.

    Just hours after John turned Jon, at 3 a.m. Tuesday, Jim and I discovered that Jonís catheter had slid out considerably and his bed was soaking wet. So, we had no choice. We had to bathe him and turn him to change his bed. Jim insisted he could do it, and he did, without any stress or strain.

    Jonís nurse visited yesterday to change his cath and trache, and of course, she donned the mask. Prior to her arrival, Jim bathed Jon, while I cleaned the house (her visit was unexpected; we thought she would be here next week). Then, we turned him and changed his linens and wound care pads. Again, no stress or strain for Jim.

    John was expecting to come over to turn Jon tonight, so I texted him and explained everything to him. He completely understands. Heís glad that Jim is able to turn Jon, because it means that Jim is stronger than he has been in the past year. John wants to be here to help us in any way that he can, but he also recognizes that he could be coming down with the flu and not know it, which would mean weíd all be exposed.

    Jim and Jon are the most vulnerable, and we fully recognize that if either one of them got the flu, they would likely end up in ICU on a vent. Iím vulnerable too given my age and my RA/PA, which affects my immune system. Iím also severely sleep deprived and under tremendous stress. So we must be vigilant in avoiding the flu.

    Thankfully, Instacart is now in our area serving 2 of our regular groceries, as well as Whole Foods (where I donít shop, because itís a half hour drive from our home, but now I can shop at WF on line). So, I can order our groceries on line and have them delivered to our home, thereby avoiding the store and public contact.

    Today, I ordered from Albertsonís, and the groceries were delivered in 2 hours. Jim fell asleep waiting/watching for her, so they phoned us to let me know she was here. I greeted the delivery person wearing a mask and gloves, and she kind of chuckled. I explained, ďI have vulnerable family members and we have to protect against the flu.Ē She said that she understood. She was very quiet putting the bags inside the door, and she could see Jim on his futon bed sleeping. She whispered, bless her heart.

    No loose fresh fruit or veggies for awhile though, but I did get bags of carrots, celery, green beans, tomatoes, potatoes, etc. And there are plenty of organic frozen veggies and fruits.

    It was so nice to not have to get ready at 9 a.m. to get to the stores before the noon rush. Showering, drying my hair, makeup, dressing to be in public. Then driving, parking, in and out of our huge van, walking around the store for an hour, loading, unloading, carrying in the groceries. Itís exhausting.

    Iím so grateful that this option exists. I figure that my time, energy, health and well being are worth the cost of the service. Not to mention not risking getting the flu in large, public places.

    Today, we also had our bottled water delivered (cases of bottles, not the big cooler bottles anymore). And, Jonís supplies were delivered. Jim took care of them, wearing mask and gloves.

    For Jonís and Jimís prescriptions, we have a drive thru pharmacy. I wonít be driving to the stores, so we wonít need to get gas in the van as often.

    This evening, I told Jim that when he gets home from his tests or doctor/infusion appointments, he will as always take off his clothes (which I take directly out to the laundry), but now, heís going to take a shower and put on clean clothes. We havenít done the showering in the past, but now is the time to do it.

    Johnís mom is a retired R.N., and I remember her telling me about coming home from her shift at the hospital, and stripping down in the garage, putting her uniform/scrubs directly into the washer on hot, and then taking a shower. She said that she was probably ďused toĒ the germs, but she didnít want to bring them home to her family.

    Every morning, we drink fresh squeezed orange juice. We take an excellent multi vitamin for seniors, and Whole Earth and Sea Vitamin D3 every day. We wash our hands constantly. Mine are so raw now that none of the moisturizers are working. And I wear gloves too!

    Jim always wipes down the steering wheel etc. after the valet returns it to him after his appointments. We are fastidious.

    We can only pray that everything we are doing is enough to protect us from this horrid flu. For us, it is a matter of life and death.

    We pray for all of you that you donít get this flu or any other virus going around these days. Be safe and careful.

    Love & Light,

    Mom to Jon, 48, (seizure disorder; Gtube; trache; colostomy; osteoporosis; hypothyroid; enlarged prostate; lymphedema, assorted mysteries) and Michael, 32, (intractable seizures; Gtube), who were born with an undiagnosed progressive neuromuscular disease and courageous spirits. Our Angel Michael received his wings in 2003 and now resides in Heaven. Our Angel Jon lives at home with me and Jim, the world's most wonderful dad.

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