Confined and Feeling Fine or Not

Our City and Lynne’s assisted living facility impose tighter restrictions daily. One staff member tested positive several days ago who is now self-quarantined. Their procedures sound effective, appropriate and sensitive. Lynne’s confined to her room including meals with frequent eye contact with smoothies and other activities. They’re aware she needs activity and exercised her in their gym room even though she doesn’t like the treadmill. They arranged a haircut which she does like. They invite care packages. I take her a love note daily with four dark chocolate covered almonds inserted as supplemental medications. I make video calls even though she may not focus the video on her face, or we can’t find the phone, or it’s not charged, or a staff member isn’t available. I keep trying.

I stood beneath her third-floor room yelling for her to look out her open window as cars whizzed by on the unnervingly quiet street corner. It didn’t work. I might pepper her windows with pebbles, but my family advised me to find better approaches to avoid confinement for “covidiot”-19 behavior. I’m not able to sail a paper airplane through the window, nor strong enough to scale the wall, nor use Rapunzel’s lifeline after Lynne’s haircut. I’m open to suggestions. People suggested throwing tennis balls or using a boom box at top volume as John Cusack did in the movie Say Anything. I have a lime pickle ball, but I’d have to find a boom box at Goodwill if they’re still available.

Otherwise, I’m self-quarantined and my son reminds I’m high risk at my age and health. I’m not afraid for me or her. I’m fine in no small part because people reach out. I’m frustrated I can’t hold or touch Lynne, eat dinner with her and share funny videos. I have too much time. I feel helpless. I hate thinking of her alone. I guess I’m not fine. Lynne says she’s fine and sounds chipper when people connect.

I am grateful for the united support we receive.

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