COVID-19 Paranoia Isn’t Helping

To ease everyone’s paranoia, I took another COVID-19 test yesterday. I have not shown any symptoms. I am 99.9% sure that I haven’t been contracted, but I want to wait for the official result before I go home. I missed my wife and kids terribly. I have been away for a whole month.

Both my sister and my nephew have been recovered. Although they had been out of the contiguous period, we still wear masks around the house, eat separately, and keep distance from each other. When I rollerbladed at the trail, which was empty most of the time, I still wore my mask. I rather took off my foggy glasses than my mask. At the skating rink, I kept my mask on the entire time. The rink was restricted to 50 people, but only around 6 people were there at 10 am in the morning on weekdays.

When my mother passed away, I didn’t want her body to be embalmed. We would have the visitation with a closed casket instead of the viewing with an opened casket. The owner of the Snyder funeral home explained to us that if we didn’t do the embalming, they would simply place the sealed bag with her body inside, which was how she came from the hospital, into the casket and that was it. No cleaning. No dressing. Nothing.

Because she had COVID-19, they wanted their staff to be safe. He explained the embalming process. They would get her cleaned up and get rid of COVID-19 in her body. If we wanted to we could schedule a dressing time the day before the funeral service. Families had made a ritual out of it and we could have as much time as we needed with her. He let us think it over and to give him the answer the next day. If we decided to embalm her, he would also waive the $750 fee.

We made our decision on the spot and scheduled a time to dress her. My two sisters, brother-in-law, two nieces, and I went in to dress her. It was such a wonderful opportunity to get to see and touch her for the last time. We put on a cream sweater with a black jacket over her. We also wore a long, black skirt on her. Other than a bruise on the right cheek and on her upper lip caused by the tubes from the ventilator, she looked beautiful. They didn’t put on any makeup for her. They didn’t even cover her bruises. She looked just like when she was alive. At that point, we decided to have the viewing so that our family members get to see her for the last time.

At the funeral service, everyone was required to wear a mask and to maintain social distance. Our mother was free of COVID-19 at last. As long as everyone took all the standard precautions, such as wearing masks, maintaining social distance, washing hands, refraining from shaking hands or hugging, we should be fine.

I understand that people are terrified of COVID-19, especially if they have never come close to it, but it would be more helpful if they stayed calm. I know they meant well, but don’t make it seem like we’re a bunch of COVID-19 superspreaders. Although I have been in contact with COVID-19 patients, I have tested negative. How many more tests do I have to go through before I can see my kids? Do I need to get tested every time I go to a grocery store? Of course, I wanted to be safe rather than be sorry. I have taken every precaution seriously. I don’t mind getting tested again, but the paranoia is not helping.