I Put the ‘Nessie’ in Essential

… because I too am a legend (supposedly)–that was a Loch Ness Monster joke in case you missed it.

Did ya’ll know that I’m practically a super hero…? Me neither. Guess I must have missed the fitting for my cape.

Three weeks ago I was in The Bahamas with my husband, mom, and brother. We were living it up, completely happy with our obliviousness to the rest of the world. Two weeks ago I was instructed by my boss to self-quarantine at home after returning from my cruise per the new guidelines released from the CDC. A week ago I was celebrating my

28th birthday by escaping the house to play some tennis with my husband and grabbing some celebratory ice cream. And then it happened… I went back to work.

For those of you who don’t know, I work for the health department. We are a state agency that prides ourselves on our ability to fight on the front lines in dire situations such as the one we’re in. We receive training for any sort of emergency situation from mass casualty shootings, natural disasters, even wide-spread lettuce contamination outbreaks. What about world-wide pandemics like COVID-19…? Duh.

While most of you are at home trying to make 1 toilet paper roll last the rest of the week, we’re organizing drive-thru testing clinics so patients don’t have to leave their cars. We’ve extended our work days from 8 hours to 12 hours+ and added extra hours over the weekend to staff our newly established call center. We’re in constant contact not only with the citizens of our communities, but also with local media, hospitals, police/ fire/rescue personnel making sure we are doing everything we can to ease concern and keep our communities safe.

Most people can’t say this right now, but I feel like I’m thriving. I’m being dealt problematic situations and I’m taking charge to find solutions. Not enough phones for the call center? Someone can use my office when I’m not there. No one stepping up to coordinate logistics of the testing clinic? Let me go grab a few National Guard guys and some police officers and start directing them to get things going. Emergency supply of N95 masks have dry-rotted straps and won’t work properly? Let me reach out to my sewing friends to remedy the situation and coordinate a pickup/drop off process so we can get these desperately needed supplies fixed and sent out. I’m even coordinating a blood drive for later this month because in situations such as these, patients who need blood to survive are likely the most vulnerable.

I’m not scared of this virus. I’m scared of what it has turned people into and the reaction (or lack there of) our global leaders have had, but as I keep reiterating to my mom (who by the way is borderline terrified on a daily basis): things will get better and return to normal. When that happens, we (the health department and hopefully the world in general) will figure out what went well and what could have been improved and make changes necessary to be better prepared for the next emergency because yes, something like this will happen again; not if–when.

I hope you all are staying safe and are taking advantage of your extended absence from work. Now I gotta go don my PPE and kick some corona ass!

10 thoughts on “I Put the ‘Nessie’ in Essential

  1. I loved this post! Some days, I feel fearful and terrified… But on the days that I’m working to help people (from a safe distance in the background), I feel strong and capable. Sometimes it’s the staying home that’s the hardest, but that too is doing our part (for those of us who aren’t essential). My hubby still works and he’s doing his part too in that regard. Thank you for all that you do!!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Pingback: The week gone by — April 5 – A Silly Place

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