An Interesting Christmas Gift

Well, we had an interesting gift this year for Christmas. We received the gift of COVID. I know, I know, it doesn’t sound like someone put a lot of thought into this gift, but I am pretty sure there is a no return policy!

Our story was a bit different from what I’ve heard, so I thought I would share.

We were so excited to be getting new hardwood floors upstairs in our house. We had a contractor working at our house, trying to rush to get it done before the holidays.  Wouldn’t you guess, he came down with a fever 3 days before Christmas. Because my family was getting together, we thought it would be important to postpone Christmas for one week to get COVID tests just in case.

I know what some of you might be thinking. Why did you have a contractor come to your house right before Christmas to install flooring? We put a lot of thought into it, and with my brother, his kids, and my parents, we are still under 10 people and wanted to get together. Most importantly, we were concerned that this might be the last Christmas my mom can still “be mom”. Alzheimer’s takes a little bit more of her every day. We wanted to spend time together while she still has some remnants of herself left.

We waited 5 days after possible exposure to get a precautionary test. At that point, my husband had a slight cold and his back and leg hurt. I mean very slight. He had no fever and had it not been for the contractor, we might not have even thought to get tested.

We got the call one day later—my husband was positive. Ironically, our contractor tested negative. Thankfully, we didn’t know that yet, because we honestly might have canceled our tests.

My husband had no fever—just a slight cold and pain in the back and legs. What on earth would pain in the back and legs have to do with COVID?

What concerns me greatly is that we almost did not get tested. Had it not been for the contractor getting a fever, we probably would not have.

A friend of mine went to a meeting where 4 or 5 people got COVID. While everyone but my friend felt like they had a cold, he ended up in the hospital twice with possible permanent heart damage (he’s in his late 40s). Same place, same time, same bug, but he got hit harder than everyone else.

Had we not been tested, we would be spreading COVID around to others by not quarantining the way we are now. We have the benefit of living in a time where technology is so quick and easy that we can get tested by driving up to a building, staying in our car, and checking our results online.

A few days later, I came down with symptoms, but I am unbelievably grateful that the virus has only been like a bad cold for us, and I pray earnestly that it will stay like that. No one knows how they are going to react to this disease. They might not be as fortunate as we are, and I do not want to be responsible for sending someone to the hospital… or worse.

I have seen into the world of medical technology this week and it furthers my belief that technology, used wisely, can make life so much easier and safer.

Medically, I have a Pulse Ox machine that I can slip on my finger to make sure our oxygen is okay. The doctor can click a button and your prescription is at the pharmacy and can even be delivered right to my door. It still amazes me what can be done with the click of a button.

Personally, I can go online, pick out my food, and have it left on my doorstep the same day.

Professionally, I can work from home and not feel the pressure to go into my office and expose others.

All of this couldn’t be done without technology. This period would be so much harder on my family if it weren’t for all the conveniences that we have. Pay by credit card, leave by the front door, and our germs don’t get to mingle with anyone else.

For as bad as 2020 has been, I am thankful for the technology that has made it more tolerable. If it were not for working from home, I would have to use up my vacation time for quarantine. Instead, I can still use that time to go to the beach and spend time with my family (which is what matters most of all anyway).

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