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PANDEMIC ALERT LEVEL
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Now tracking the new emerging South Africa Omicron Variant

Surreal

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AandEM View Drop Down
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    Posted: February 03 2022 at 9:48pm

I cant accurately describe how it all feels, years into this mess. Because of this forum, (avianflutalk.com) I paid attention to pandemics for 15+ years, and always calmly talked to people about how it was a when, not if scenario. A lot of people didn't remember H1N1. I caught it early (teacher) and I was very sick, but  took my kids to get vaccinated at the fair grounds just a few weeks later, and two elderly people were being taken away by ambulance after passing out. I remember feeling very scared for a short time, and then it was over.  I honestly thought this one would be similar.

 I warned everyone I  knew that this would be serious, to get prepared, but I never imagined this is where we would be in 2022. 

I live and teach  in a rural community. People want to help and care for each other, but they are also fearful, very "independent" and predominantly listen to right wing media. I tried having conversations with my reluctant friends. At the beginning, there was a lot of talk about the hype being "political". But, then some of our friend's parents started dying. My kid had to miss prom, senior night, track season commencement, grad parties, 18th birthday, and the community started getting angry. We stayed home through all of it. I thought it was worth it if it saved lives. Lots of people I cared about died that first spring, but they were mostly over 70. It was tragic, but not terribly unexpected. Rural communities were getting hit hard. Fast forward to the school year- I teach in person, and I enforce mask wearing. My kids know it isn't optional, we all get used to it, make the best of it. I get Covid anyway. I miss 10 days of teaching, but come back exhausted and grateful it wasn't worse and my family is ok. Fast forward to the spring, and Im in line right after HCW for the vaccine. Im so thankful and feel like the fog is starting to lift. Still tragedies around-students' parents, grandparents, people I know, but I truly thought it was almost over. I visited my vaccinated parents, I went to restaurants, I was thankful for every day. It stopped being the center of daily life. Then, Delta. I wrongly assumed those eligible would get the shot.

 I was no longer "the pandemic lady" and all the talk had basically moved on. Then, my friends in their 40s started dying too. They were all horrific, lonely, suffering, long, drawn out deaths. Weeks and weeks of prayers and dropping off casseroles and helping get young kids to school, and go fund me's. Friend #4, a teacher for 28 years, healthy, athletic, previous infection- decided to wait for more info. He went to the other three funerals too, but was still not convinced. He has been on a ventilator/ecmo/oxygen combos for 6 weeks now. It isn't looking good, but I haven't given up hope. 

I used to turn to this site to somehow find the answers that would protect my family and my friends. I tried my best, but all I can say is my parents and immediate family are still alive. I've had a recent round of it, but it wasn't as bad as the first, thankfully. 

School is an endless battle. Parents threatening school board members, threatening the teachers, everyone disagreeing about everything, people generally being hateful, kids depressed and so many of them recently sick and scared.  It was a tough job before, but I never imagined it could be like this. 

I dont have a question, comment or reply. I think I'm too exhausted.  I just wanted to have  my experiences recorded somewhere. I've given up on the fairytale that this forum had some secret to getting us out of this undamaged. I still think it has value, but the discourse and sharing of insights is limited. I truly do appreciate the work so many  people have put in over the years in an attempt to help others. I guess I just never thought enough  about the "during pandemic" part. Continuing to function seems like a win. I miss my friends. Every day, I try to help students and friends who have lost their loved ones. It is all I can do, and I will keep doing it. I dont waste time and energy arguing. There will never be a "back to normal".  I just wish the best for everyone.

 

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Littlesmile View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Littlesmile Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: February 04 2022 at 6:59am

Out of all the pandemic backdraft I would never have guessed schools would be the worst! Everyone clapped the NHS here but stabbed the education system in the back... Teachers look after children (sometimes more than parents) develop their growth and care for them each day. The lack of respect and yes I would even go as far to say hate that has been shown to teachers has been shocking. Teachers (and other school workers) have not signed up to give their health and lives... Without even a thanks..

I'm sorry to hear you are experiencing things so badly :-(  Unfortunately I can't see things changing anytime soon for schools. Over here they have just announced that by Easter no more record of deaths. I think by March no need to isolate if you have covid... 

:-)
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KiwiMum View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote KiwiMum Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: February 04 2022 at 12:24pm

The same thing is happening here. I have a number of friends who are school teachers, and one who is a school principal, and they are reporting that the stress and anger and frustration the parents are feeling is manifesting in abuse and vitriol. But the teachers feel it too. Of the 6 that I know, not one of them wants masks in the school room and yet the government is enforcing it here for all children over the age of 8. 

There is also a lot of anger and abuse being aimed at shop workers. They are bearing the brunt of people's anger. They are an easy target. Yesterday a friend told me how she was in line at a checkout when an old woman in front of her reduced the checkout girl to tears. My friend wanted to say something but didn't. She said the old woman was being completely vicious and abusive towards the teenage girl. I wish she had said something. I definitely would have done. But apparently this sort of behaviour is becoming more and more common here.

Those who got it wrong, for whatever reason, may feel defensive and retrench into a position that doesn’t accord with the facts.
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AandEM View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote AandEM Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: February 04 2022 at 9:24pm

Thank you both for reading. I think one of the hardest parts is knowing how much faith the kids have lost in the adults. They have had to sit back and watch all of the "grown ups" muck this thing up for years now. 

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AandEM View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote AandEM Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: February 10 2022 at 7:36pm

My 4th unvaccinated friend under 50 died yesterday morning. His students are devastated. 

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KiwiMum View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote KiwiMum Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: February 11 2022 at 11:51am

Originally posted by AandEM AandEM wrote:

My 4th unvaccinated friend under 50 died yesterday morning. His students are devastated. 

I'm sorry to hear about that. It's very sad.

Those who got it wrong, for whatever reason, may feel defensive and retrench into a position that doesn’t accord with the facts.
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