“Mom. I am going to get this virus. It’s just a question of when,” my eldest daughter, Julie, calmly tells me.
“Don’t expect me for Passover. I won’t expose you and our family to the virus.” Julie states with authority.
Julie is an attending gynecologist at a huge, busy urban hospital. She is the one called into the emergency room when a pregnant woman arrives. She is the one patients see at the clinic who have no insurance. She is the doctor on the maternity floor calmly reassuring patients as they are scared and panicked about birthing a new life. She is the doctor who delivers six, seven or more babies during her 24 hour on-call shift when complications keep her working in the hospital into the next day. Too often, she’s the one up at night worrying about her patients.
She’s continually exhausted; mentally and physically.
“Julie, please wear a mask at work,” I pleaded with her yesterday.
“Mom, you don’t get it. I was given one non- reusable respirator mask that was fitted for me. The hospital keeps them under lock and key. They don’t have enough of a supply. I have it in my bag for an emergency,” she tries to reassure me.
I wonder, isn’t every person she comes in contact with at the hospital a potential threat? What is considered an emergency? Once someone is coughing within six feet of her it will be too late for her to grab her mask and shove it on her face. What if her skinny, exhausted body has to fight this virus?
Does the worrying ever end?
Sea glass, found on beaches, is naturally worn and smooth by tide and time,. As a mother & teacher, reader & life-long learner, and of course, sea glass collector, I aspire to use writing to help me understand myself and the world around me.