Is it possible to buy a mask that will fit Leonardo’s face just in case COVID-19 rears its ugly head in our area? I’m kidding, of course, but still, all of the daily updates, discussions and information being given to us really has everyone on high alert – either believing it’s serious or fictitious. Either way, everyone has COVID-19 on their minds.
I’m not going to write here as an expert on infectious diseases. Clearly I know not to attempt to know more on a medical situation than I do, but I will say that from what I’ve read, seen on television, had plenty of conversations with my mother, and listened to people who are experts on these types of diseases, I would say that people need to stop having mass hysteria over COVID-19 but still take it serious – very serious.
It’s hard to treat a new strain of virus, that is microscopic and unknown, when you aren’t fully sure about it. You can’t stop what you can’t see. Thus mass hysteria. Blame media. Blame government. Blame whoever you want. But you can’t stop something you don’t see, and based on what I have learned about COVID-19, by the time you are able to see it, as in symptoms, it’s too late and you have already infected everyone you have come in contact with.
Want to understand how these things spread? Think of the number of people you see in a day, then think of who those people see, and who those people see. That idea that it just “spreads” – yeah, it’s not as far-fetched as it sounds. So what do we do? Go crazy? Lose our minds? Sit patient? Say if “it’s our time, it’s our time?”
What do I say do? We all need to take a breath. Follow the CDC’s guidelines of washing hands and not coughing on people. Follow the suggestions of staying home when you are sick. Why has everyone in America suddenly purchased all of the toilet paper? I don’t know. If you feel the need to buy a ton of toilet paper, feel free to do so, but in the event you have to be quarantined for two weeks – either because you get sick or because it’s mandated by the “powers that be,” have on hand plenty of canned goods. That toilet paper won’t do you much good if you don’t have any food to keep your body nourished. Probably need to purchase some dog food, cat food and cat litter too while you are at it – cause again, a quarantine is a quarantine.
Should we freak out? Depends on the person you are. We live in the greatest country in the world. We have some of the greatest medical care and the brightest minds that are working to take care of our country during all of this. While there are surely issues that are arising and things we aren’t being told, we have to remember that washing our hands, covering our coughs, and practicing social distancing is the best medicine for now.
Trust me, I’m sad there is no more hockey right now. I was so looking forward to seeing if my Nashville Predators wound up in the race for the Stanley Cup and if my beloved Huntsville Havoc make a three-peat at SPHL champs. I get it – this entire COVID-19 mess has disrupted our lives. But, when you can’t stop something from spreading when you can’t see it, then you need to stay away from people.
Social distancing will not cure this virus but it will slow the curve and stop the spread – and that is what is most important.
I can’t even fathom a rational answer for working families who need childcare and live paycheck to paycheck. All of this “disruption” is not good for anyone. Let’s just pray a lot, wash our hands, and hope for the best.
And as for the doggy face mask, it might have been a serious question after all.
Laura Pitts is a former Daily Mountain Eagle reporter. She now serves as director of the Scottsboro Public Library.