My husband and I are both over 70 and have medical issues, he more than I. The virus took away activities that had been keeping us active and made life worth living. For me Contra and English Country dancing, visiting friends, especially a little girl I love, and singing with people are gone. For Robert, my husband, French Club and exercise classes have stopped.
Actually, since January 26, 2019, I’ve had limited mobility due to knee pain and swelling. I was just able to take care of the house and my husband, who has several medical problems, including Parkinson’s.
My husband said that he wanted a cat. Little Purry , a tuxedo, short hair cat, brings us some smiles. She sat on my lap all the days when the knee prevented me from doing much and helped distract me from my own discomfort.
A knee replacement in October 2019 meant I could look forward to doing things I loved again, and I had just started in Dec. 2019 to do that when Covid-19 restrictions ended the activities I loved so much.
My husband had some medical problems and ended up in the hospital twice in 2 weeks . So my focus was on him for a month.
In February I started to construct a raised garden bed and got the soil delivered. I spend a month moving it to the back of the lot from where it had been dumped and using what I had around the garage for the sides of the bed: old shutters, plywood, plastic sheets, the remains of a bookcase someone had thrown out years ago and I’d salvaged. That kept me active .
My husband lost the 2 exercise classes he’d been attending faithfully, one at Hartnell and one at the Y, but walks and does exercises every day. Though both went on-line, you just can’t duplicate the use of equipment, and he found it better just to do what he could himself. He would have recovered from his hospital stays, which were long enough to cause loss of stamina and strength, more quickly had he had the classes in person, however.
My husband had a French Club, and one of the members put it on Zoom for a weekly meeting. It’s not as good as in person meetings, but it helps to keep his spirits up.
For me, the isolation started in January 2019, so it’s hard and depressing. I’ve used Facebook video to connect with some friends, but I want to do things with people. Wanting to have my young friend, Madison, here to visit, take her places, let her play with her friends,and not being able to is heart-wrenching. Knowing that she could emotionally benefit from being in a place with less conflict than she has now and that I can’t help much makes me cry.
Being able to harvest vegetables and strawberries from my raised beds and give some to neighbors brings me some joy. I walk, keep the house clean and maintain the yard and garden, have other projects and repairs, but have gained weight when I need to lose a at least 40 pounds. I’m sad a lot and scared, more for Robert, than for myself. I don’t know how I’ll get through this and continue to be able to help Robert. I just put one foot in front of the other and do what I have to.
Submitted by Lynn Wilde, Monterey County – Salinas.