In the Meantime,
Feb 15, 2022 – from MI
Today I am sitting with Wendy as she gets her fourth infusion. This is the last of this sequence, which took place every two weeks. In two weeks she begins another drug that will be infused weekly for 12 weeks. Then she will receive three weeks of radiation. It is quite a steep hill overall and she will be glad when it is over.
Speaking of over, let’s talk about the pandemic and how tired we are and how much we all want it to be over. Color me ready for it to end. My ears are sore from masks, and the charm of zoom meetings has vanished. Though vaxxed and boosted, Wendy’s cancer leaves her immunocompromised and that means we are pretty much back in February 2021. And it’s not over, as the two variant surges have proven. I would do better gambling at Talking Stick Casino than predicting what will happen next.
Fortunately, we have a team of folks who worked in public health and epidemiology who advise me. I have asked them to chime in about what limits we should maintain, which we can reduce, and so on. As they do their work, I have researched other UU communities, and they vary (as you would expect among folks like us anyway). So many factors are involved – local pandemic conditions, vaccine status of members, the risk that comes from crowds or singing, the status of young children.
Fortunately, we are a sensible community. We have limited seating since resuming in person worship. Music has been reduced to recordings or a handful of voices. Those who are at risk have stayed away for their own safety. So far we have not had a case of Covid that arose from attending worship. As the person charged with the safety of the community, I am grateful.
And yet I also know that we cannot thrive like this, either as individuals or as a community. My hope is that the current trend will allow us to open the doors to anyone soon, that we can have more live music soon, that we can feel more like a community again. Chances are, dependent on the recommendations of the Covid team, we will continue to insist on masks for a good while even if we are more in number. Chances are, again dependent on good advice, we will ask people to wear the colored bracelets and respect those who cannot hug or kiss. Chances are, music will return in steps, and the beloved bridge of love may be yet a ways off.
This much is not unknown: VUU will thrive. If this pandemic has been the ‘winter of our discontent,’ let this winter dweller remind you that it takes winter to make a spring. I have no doubt that when the cold and dark of this long separation begins to give way to warmth and light, shoots of green and flowers of gold will emerge. Possibilities never imagined will suddenly be real, and I (from the cold vantage of my Michigan home) will smile as you find fresh joy and hope. FW