Great Allegheny Passage at Furnace Run
COVID-19 Series

Concentrating On COVID: Am I Safe to Return?

Well, we are in that homestretch where I promised where the services delivered to me would gravitate to a more in-person approach rather than being hybrid or virtually delivered as they mostly have been the past 13 months or so. Going out in public and seeing people not daunting their protective gear or keeping their distance makes me weary of if now is the right time to safely return to the community.

Yes, we have made advances since the onset of COVID-19. Vaccines have been developed, but we don’t know the long-lasting effectiveness of them. New variants of the virus are popping about as time progresses, the aches go on and on. Yet, people feel as if they are free from getting the virus as they get the vaccines. Yes, everything has its side effects, even the medicine that we take every day, sometimes several times a day, however there is much more detailed research put in into studies of medicines and many doctors I have met prefer to wait for some time before prescribing the medication.

As with the vaccine, I get there is a push to return to normalcy. However, all the vaccine is extra amour. We can still get COVID and have to follow slight quarantine protocol, however it won’t be as intense as if we had no armor. I am not downplaying the need to get the vaccine, as I did and had hardly any side effects. I have attended many question and answer sessions about the vaccine and when you look at the numbers in the end, the benefits do outweigh the risks, but keep in mind that having the vaccine just provides you with more armor against the virus.

Even as I transition next week into having services delivered in person more than hybrid or virtually, I do have to remember that I will be in contact with no more amount of people than what I am now and that the risk is very minimal. With all parties involved in my treatment daunting PPE and socially distancing, I am sure that I will be fine. I just feel that as it has been this week in having the remote piece of the day program removed it is a little bit hard and has placed me in sort of a shutdown state. This is where I haven’t adjusted to being away from the computer constantly and the need to be “in the know” of what is going on in the world that I haven’t gotten away from in over a year.

One benefit is that my mother is now retired and as with walking, she is a big support and makes sure I get what I need to be independent in the community. She, like many others is concerned with society’s disregard for masking and social distancing, but that is their choice. We will get there someday; we are just unsure if now is the time. Case counts are fluctuating on a constant basis, but they are not bad. We just have to remember that we have that extra armor in our toolbox to protect us from getting really sick.

I honestly feel that the hardest part of the whole thing should I contract the virus is the need to quarantine as I like to be out and about. However, likewise when people are sick or told to stay home, they should do just that, stay home. I get that people want to get out and do things, need things from the store, miss certain foods, etc. However, you were given that advisement for a reason and it is to keep you and everyone else safe from being infected.

But I am ready to get back. For what it can be, I am vaccinated, I have waited several weeks after to have the armor in my toolbox. I will be protective of what I do and will do my best to protect myself from others, that is all I can do.

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