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Small Talk: The Prayer Closet

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Stay at home order goes into effect at 1:00 PM today.  Localities have 24 hours to get it going.  

ICU capacity across the region dropped to 13% last night.  That's down from 20% just the day before.  I'll be going to a drugstore at opening to get my mother a box of candy.  That's the one thing for Christmas I hadn't  purchased already.  I think that may be the least crowded store where I can get one.

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1 hour ago, Absolom said:

Stay at home order goes into effect at 1:00 PM today.  Localities have 24 hours to get it going.  

ICU capacity across the region dropped to 13% last night.  That's down from 20% just the day before.  I'll be going to a drugstore at opening to get my mother a box of candy.  That's the one thing for Christmas I hadn't  purchased already.  I think that may be the least crowded store where I can get one.

i woke up to that notice too. i have really everything already and now i just need to get groceries topped off. then its in the house for me. 

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16 hours ago, DangerousMinds said:

It’s very restrictive because California hospitals are overwhelmed. Many are at capacity and medical staff are exhausted. This is just for a few weeks time.

One American is dying every 30 seconds or so, yes. And medical staff are burned out and many have gotten sick and even just quit/retired. It’s very serious out there.

I've had 4 physician friends who've decided to retire completely in the past 6 months.  Each is in their 60's, has been practicing 30+ years and had not been planning on retiring this soon until COVID appeared on the scene.  One is an ER doc who told me that he just couldn't do it anymore, he was so sick and tired of COVID and trying to keep people from dying on his shift that he decided he was done for good and forever, 2 years earlier than he thought he would.  I also know at least half a dozen older, experienced doctors who have scaled back their practice and restricted their activities in the past 6 months because they or their significant other have medical risk factors.  Currently, the hospital system where I practice has restricted inpatient surgeries and won't schedule any that require a hospital stay and I don't see that changing, except perhaps stopping outpatient surgeries, before the end of the year except for emergencies.  I decided this is as good a point as any for me to stop doing major surgeries except for the occasional emergency when I'm on call.  I'm done-zo.  I have a patient who wants a hysterectomy-she needs one, too- who is on my butt several times a week wanting someone to make an exception for her.  It doesn't work that way, I have no power.  I let her know that one of my partners will be seeing her and getting her on the schedule once it opens up and have a nice life.

COVID is going to change the face of medicine in a lot of unexpected ways.

Edited by doodlebug
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Since I am a summer baby, I never went to school on my birthday.  The closest I ever came to it was when I taught summer school one year and it ended about 10 days before my birthday. 
I attended a Catholic elementary school from grades 2-8, and there were no classroom birthday parties.  However, it was customary to make birthday “corsages” for friends.  I think they were bows with ribbons and candies or gums attached.  I would have liked to have one.

I attended first grade in the local public school.  The teacher had a special birthday crown that the birthday child would wear on their special day.  On the last day of school, the summer birthday children took turns wearing it.  The day was over before I got a chance to wear it...

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1 hour ago, marypat57 said:
I attended a Catholic elementary school from grades 2-8, and there were no classroom birthday parties.  However, it was customary to make birthday “corsages” for friends.  I think they were bows with ribbons and candies or gums attached.  I would have liked to have one.

K-8 here!

I remember those corsages. I recall tootsie rolls and gum drops. I’ve mentioned them to others over time, and they never heard of them.

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1 hour ago, doodlebug said:

I've had 4 physician friends who've decided to retire completely in the past 6 months. 

COVID is going to change the face of medicine in a lot of unexpected ways.

Ob/Gyn daughter in law is seeing the same. she is one of 3 drs in her practice. senior dr is retiring yr end. way earlier than expected. their practice delivered 300+ babies so far this year, plus surgeries, well checks etc. they have 600 patients alone so far who will deliver next year. they are trying to find a new partner and 3 qualified midwives to join their practice or the 2 remaining partners will not be able to keep up

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@Lookeylou, that was somewhere way past beautiful. It’s so well-written, so heartfelt, and so terribly sad and so grateful at the same time. I feel as if I know him.

He was right, you know. You were a great mom and you’re still being one.

My heart goes out to you through these bleak days.

 

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Hugs to you and all who love Sweet Son @lookeyloo. Your post was very moving.  Your strength, grief and love, gently came alive in almost a soothing way. I'm sure Sweet Son felt that throughout his life. What a lucky man to have had you as his mom.

Don't worry about us here on Small Talk. Just take what you need, show up when you can. We're all here in your corner. ♥️

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@lookeyloo, that was incredibly beautiful, touching and so loving. You have shown us how special sweet son was and how much he loved his family.  How much he and husband loved each other. He was so blessed with a wonderful, loving family.  I think of you, sweet son, sweet son in law and your entire family often. Sending so many virtual hugs..❤️

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That was lovely, @lookeyloo. I got teary-eyed reading it. You and your family remain in my thoughts and prayers. I am glad you and your son-in-law have each other. He and your son both sound like really great guys. 

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lookeyloo, I could feel your sweet son through your words. I feel like you gave the world a peek at his life and your love for him and son in law. What a beautiful relationship you had. 

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Lookey, your words are perfect and Sweet Son is smiling down with love for you for having the grace and fortitude to record them for posterity.  You know how pleased and proud he is of the way you are taking care of his beloved husband, too.  Keep the faith.

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@lookeyloo thank you for sharing your thoughts with us. I think of you and your family often. Please take good care.

Sorry to bring it back to COVID, but I am in the SF Bay Area, as you know, so we are going into stay-at-home mode starting this weekend until 4 January. As I read somewhere online, "if you have a bubble, it's been popped." No interacting with others outside your immediate household unless it's in the course of an essential service. I get it, I really do, and I agree. But. We have been really good--in the past 265 days we've gone to like five doctor visits between us; we've picked up takeout maybe five times at most; we've gone on a few socially distanced outside masked walks with a friend; and my best friend has stopped by for outdoor, driveway, masked, distanced visits every couple of weeks. It's that last that I'm trying to get my head around missing. We have gotten into the habit of checking in when either of us gets a grocery delivery time, for example, and adding on so we can share. We find little gifties to slip in with the the produce. I've been collecting so many X-mas presents for her this year. I planned before the news of the stay-at-home order to make her favorite chili next week specifically so I can share it with her. I know the order is the right thing but I am tired and I want to give Jenny her chili! At this point, we may do drop-offs with no contact like we're Doordash or something. Even that, I'm not sure technically qualifies as obeying the order.  Ah, I'm just venting.

ETA: One of the people in one of the Zoom D&D games that is keeping our sanity is in Ohio with few restrictions, I guess. He is travelling around the country taking his kid to soccer tournaments and staying in hotels and having trick-or-treaters and having his kids over for holidays and taking Boy Scouts on camping trips and it just seems like he is living on another planet. And I know it's not a zero-sum game and I know that I am the responsible one here but that doesn't make me want to kick him in the 'nads any less. While screaming "why do you get to live your normal life while my dad is in a care facility and my sister is living alone 2500 miles away and I haven't been able to see them and now I can't even give Jenny her f&*ing chili?!"

Edited by jcbrown
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I just never want to have to stare into the haunted eyes of an exhausted, heartbroken medical professional and say, “Well, we were really careful, most of the time.

The virus doesn’t hand out gold stars or extra credit for wearing a mask or avoiding crowds or not eating with friends for weeks or months. It just waits for that one time the rules get relaxed...”just a little.” And it waits...and it’s very, very patient.

 

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@lookeyloo your words moved me to tears.  I am so sorry you and your family and your wonderful son-in-law are going through this unbelievable grief.  Your son had the best Mom and I know he’s going to be looking out for all of you.  Please take care of yourselves and know that you will all be together  again.  My prayers are with you all.  

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@jcbrown I'm sorry you have to deal with stricter restrictions. I'm not in CA, so even though I know they are happening, I don't understand how strictly they enforce them. You really can't even visit a friend staying 6 feet apart outside while wearing a mask? Even when the first closures happened here in Illinois, we could still do a social distanced, outside gathering. 

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I just received a text from my brother.  Southern California and the San Joaquin Valley are on a 3-week lockdown starting tomorrow morning.  He is in Stanislaus county, so he will be locked down.  According to the map, only 5 counties are a color other than purple, so I won't be surprised if the lockdown is expanded.  I guess I'm glad I moved!

 

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38 minutes ago, realityfan26 said:

@jcbrown I'm sorry you have to deal with stricter restrictions. I'm not in CA, so even though I know they are happening, I don't understand how strictly they enforce them. You really can't even visit a friend staying 6 feet apart outside while wearing a mask? Even when the first closures happened here in Illinois, we could still do a social distanced, outside gathering. 

Nope. No mingling of households. It makes sense because a lot of people were going to relax too much for the holidays but it's still hard.

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The New England states and NY were the last to relax the initial lockdown, kept things fairly tight and have slowly introduced new mandates, but this hasn't stopped an increase in cases because so many folks are going to do what they want to do. 1 in every 700 CT residents has died from covid.

I really wish all states could be locked down at least through the first of the year. We've come so far from cheering on the medical community, hanging bears and rainbows in windows for the kids and the general sense of all being in this together. Now its like every man for himself.

I will not be swayed. As much as it pains me (and occasionally drives me crazy), I'm in this for the long haul.

Christmas this year will be an hour-ish in-person masked visit (with a couple of windows open). We'll open presents, finishing making dinner, box some of it up, wait until all members return to their homes and then eat our Christmas meal together by Zoom. Not ideal at all. But its all about keeping ourselves and the community safe.

Next year at Christmas I'll be hugging and kissing my kids so much they'll be wishing we were all quarantined.

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7 hours ago, Oldernowiser said:

It just waits for that one time the rules get relaxed...”just a little.”

This is what scares me. I fail to understand why intelligent educated people fail to realize the importance of social distancing and mask wearing. I’m considering dropping Mr Chemo. I went over last night to do his med check and cook. Of all things, he had a neighbor's wife over to join us for dinner. Her husband was away and I understand that he was trying to be kind. I tried to keep away, but watching him get almost face to face with her looking at pictures on his phone scared the heck out of me. She and her husband still socialize unmasked with other friends and shop sans mask. He may be almost 80 (feeling like Superman) and thinks if he goes that he has had a full and rich life, but I’m younger and still have many things left that I’d like to see and do. I’m scared. He got really annoyed with me, but I have a right to use all precautions and avoid. I can usually go 2 weeks without shopping. He likes to shop every day (he’s Italian and that’s how he grew up). There is no changing him so to I’m going to seriously consider what I need to do to take care of myself. It’s been all about him for so long that this is entering uncharted territory for me. It will cause chasms in the neighborhood because everyone associates us as being together. I’m sure (or paranoid) that I’m going to made out to be the bad person for dropping him mid-chemo. I’ve heard him talk behind other’s backs and am scared to be victim of the same. He is also planning to take a trip mid-January to see his daughter and SIL. It’s when his daughter has 2 days off. I said “But you have an infusion then”. He stated he’ll postpone it. What part of protocol doesn’t he understand or am I wrong to think that when you are getting chemo you can’t pick and choose when it’s convenient for you? This is all weighing heavily on me. I also see that it’s nothing compared to the losses and troubles that a lot of y’all are dealing with so I’m sorry to put my petty concerns here. 
  Please everyone, do what you need to do to stay well. 

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@lookeyloo  What a beautiful remembrance and tribute to Sweet Son!  I just wanted to reach out and hug you.  
I am so glad that you, Mr Loo and Son in Law have each other to share this time with.

May your memories continue to be a comfort to you.

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3 hours ago, MunichNark said:

Happy St Nicholas day, all! Sending love and virtual hugs to everyone.❤️

Does your family put their shoes out at night so St. Nicholas can deliver presents? I posted this before and I do not see it so please forgive me if it shows up twice. 

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1 hour ago, MargeGunderson said:

@Mindthinkr, anyone who thinks you owe anything more to Mr Chemo than everything you have done is not worthy of your consideration. Don’t pay any attention to petty, misinformed neighbors who likely aren’t doing a tiny percentage of what you are doing. Your first obligation is to yourself, and I for one am glad to hear that you are rethinking your relationship with him and doing what is best for you.

This times a zillion. He’s a jerk.

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@Mindthinkr, you've got me so curious about the community you live in. If you don't mind my asking, is it a retirement community or a cul-de-sac type neighborhood? Or does your group have a connection through a club or something?

I ask because this type of thing is foreign to me. Your neighborhood, intrigues me, makes me a little jealous and scares the shit out of me all at once.

 

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1 hour ago, crazycatlady58 said:

Does your family put their shoes out at night so St. Nicholas can deliver presents? I posted this before and I do not see it so please forgive me if it shows up twice. 

I'd like to know, too.  As a kid, going to Catholic school, we learned about St. Nicholas, but even in the unenlightened 60's, Black Peter was played down, if not ignored, thank goodness.  We used to hang socks on the back of chairs and St Nick would put a couple of quarters and a piece or two of candy in them.  Nothing too much, but, being kids, we were more than happy for another reason to get stuff.

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@Mindthinkr - I second what @BetyBee and @Zella wrote up there ^^. Strong words, and I'm all for 'em. You have to live YOUR life, and also you have to SAVE it. Please do! 

ETA: I was posting at the same time you posted; I'm glad you're getting out of that relationship. I wish you all the best.

Edited by Jeeves
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Happy Sunday to all! I'm having a little "checking my tech" phase. Minus the deets, the bottom line is that I've scooped up the 3 now-extraneous iPods I've accumulated over the last 15 years, charged them, researched them. And I'm going to list at least one of them for sale on ebay. Maybe two. The third one wouldn't bring enough to justify the hassle and fees, so I'll probably donate it to a charity shop. Yes, I've either wiped/reset them, or I will before they go out the door.

I know, to read all the tech articles you'd think the whole world has moved to streaming music. Well, no. Out here in the American West, if you're on the road in some areas, you'd be lucky to get a cell signal. I can't imagine how well streaming music would work - i.e., NOT. Not to mention the cost of the data. Don't ask how I know that (cringe). I'm happy to have my whole iTunes (or whatever they now call it) music library - and my audiobooks - on an iPod that I can play on my car's audio system or through headphones/speakers. 

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1 minute ago, Jeeves said:

Happy Sunday to all! I'm having a little "checking my tech" phase. Minus the deets, the bottom line is that I've scooped up the 3 now-extraneous iPods I've accumulated over the last 15 years, charged them, researched them. And I'm going to list at least one of them for sale on ebay. Maybe two. The third one wouldn't bring enough to justify the hassle and fees, so I'll probably donate it to a charity shop. Yes, I've either wiped/reset them, or I will before they go out the door.

I know, to read all the tech articles you'd think the whole world has moved to streaming music. Well, no. Out here in the American West, if you're on the road in some areas, you'd be lucky to get a cell signal. I can't imagine how well streaming music would work - i.e., NOT. Not to mention the cost of the data. Don't ask how I know that (cringe). I'm happy to have my whole iTunes (or whatever they now call it) music library - and my audiobooks - on an iPod that I can play on my car's audio system or through headphones/speakers. 

I used to always have MP3 players until I guess the world decided we don't need to make them anymore. And though I had a lot of friends who liked Pandora, I am too much of a control freak to let someone random app choose my music. If I want to listen to the same song on repeat for 10 hours, I don't want my technology judging me. 😇

 At first, I added extra storage to my Android phone to hold all my songs (I've got about 10,000 of them) and play them on Samsung Music app--I hate the default Google Music app--but about a year ago, I got a Spotify account. And I've found it well worth the money for me since it has saved me so much on buying music. I do have issues with poor cell reception here, too, but as long as I've downloaded the songs/albums I've liked to my account, they will still play without that, so I can drive along on rural roads and still listen to music on my phone. I don't really pay attention to the data usage because I have an unlimited data plan, but I think you can choose settings to minimize data usage. 

In any event, if you end up wanting to try to stream, I vote for Spotify. 🙂 

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Just checked, actually have 15,000 songs on my phone. Most of them I have also found on Spotify and can listen to on there as well, but if I want to listen to something too obscure to be on Spotify, then I'll just switch back to the stuff saved on my phone. 

Edited by Zella
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My mother’s best friend and neighbor’s adult son is sick with covid. They had a large family gathering for Thanksgiving. Unmasked of course. They’re trying to figure out who might have been infected. His mom is terrified. She’s 84. For some reason no one considered that having 20 people gather in close quarters was a bad idea with an 84 year old person. 
 

On a lighter note, I only have one more Christmas gift to buy. I’ll be ordering it online. My mom and I decided to go in together and get my dad a new recliner chair.  The scary part is having strangers deliver it to the house:(. I got my young niece an outfit and a smart watch that I ordered online.  
 

I had to pick up a few items yesterday. There are too many people out. I put on my mask and sunglasses, planned my route and ran in quickly, grabbed items, darted to checkout (1 was outside).  I disinfected as soon as my transaction was complete.  I was in each of the two stores less than 10 minutes. Still....it scares me. One clerk told me that spraying alcohol on my credit card will ruin it....hmmmm...I’ve been spraying it since March.  

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1 hour ago, Mindthinkr said:

    It is a gated community with a country club (to which I don’t belong because I don’t golf and am not going to pay the exorbitant dues to have to eat in their subpar restaurant for additional quarterly minimums). People run in cliques. Each area (in my case street) also has a second HOA. 
   I thank all of you for your words of support. Not today, but soon I’m going to make this break. It’s time to cancel the cycle. 

Two HOAs?? Yikes.

Let ‘em talk. I’m sure the worst gossips will come charging in to help the poor “victim”...and then they’ll start to understand what you’ve dealt with.

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47 minutes ago, SunnyBeBe said:

My mother’s best friend and neighbor’s adult son is sick with covid. They had a large family gathering for Thanksgiving. Unmasked of course. They’re trying to figure out who might have been infected. His mom is terrified. She’s 84. For some reason no one considered that having 20 people gather in close quarters was a bad idea with an 84 year old person. 

What part of “asymptomatic carrier” do people not understand?

JFC. It’s making me stabby. And it’s hard enough to get in the holiday mindset this year...for the first time in my life, it all just seems like too much trouble to bother. 

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Scarlett45

This is a reminder that the Politics Policy is still in effect.

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