How Are You All Doing?

by | Mar 23, 2020 | Uncategorized | 48 comments

Self Isolation for Coronavirus
Merchandise is Here!

We are living in weird times.

I can’t say unprecedented; plagues were relatively common throughout history.
A while back I read a biography of Abigail Adams, and remember vividly the story of how she had her kids “vaccinated” against smallpox (which meant they were all exposed to a low dose and got sick) and then had to remain in isolation for three months.
Of course we’ve heard the parallels with the Spanish Flu, which killed 25,000,000 people. Keith and I visited the delightful Florence Nightingale museum last summer in London, which, at the time, had a Spanish Flu exhibit. When you entered, they gave you a card with a person’s identity on it.
Spanish Flu Epidemic
As you moved throughout the stations, you learned what happened to that person. It turns out that I died and Keith lived.
Spanish Flu in London
 
My grandmother learned to knit at the age of 6 or 7 when she was under quarantine because her sister Doris had diphtheria (and little Doris later died from it).
Throughout history, people have lived with quarantines and illnesses and death. Perhaps the reason this is so startling is because our generations have been incredibly blessed.

Nevertheless, a lot of people are having huge disruptions to their lives.

Who knows if school will be resumed this year–or what will happen to students if it’s not? I think of all of those who had weddings planned for the next month or so (and  know some of my readers did), or who were hoping to look for jobs and start new jobs.
I think of all of those who have been laid off, and are wondering what will happen to the economy.
I think and pray for the business owners who are so uncertain about what will come, and feel a responsibility for their employees as well.
In the four families who are part of the Bare Marriage employee community, we have three women in the latter stages of pregnancy. Will their moms be able to be with them after the birth? No one knows.
One of my friends lost someone to COVID19 over the weekend. I don’t  have a personal connection to anyone else, but I suppose more will come. It’s likely inevitable.
And domestic violence is increasing rapidly. Those with abusive spouses now can’t get away, and children with abusive parents are especially vulnerable. Watch out for your neighbours, as much as you can. Call a hotline if you suspect anything. And if you’re the one being hurt, please call that hotline. You still can be helped.
And sometimes it’s just small things, but important things. Today is my niece’s birthday. We’re all going to FaceTime scattered throughout the day so that she at least has other people talking to her instead of only her siblings and parents, but when you’re 8 years old, it’s hard to have a birthday without friends. It’s not the biggest thing in the world, but these little things add up.
Once our self-isolation period is over (Keith and I are under mandatory self-isolation until next Monday, because we were out of the country a week ago), Keith may have to do shifts in the ER, depending on how bad it gets in our home town (it’s not bad at all yet, and people have been isolating for over a week now). if that happens, he’ll have to cut off his beard (and I’ve finally gotten used to it!).
And then there are the big questions.
How bad will this be? What will happen to the economy? And the one that keeps me praying hard–what will happen when it really reaches the Third World?

For me, personally, not much has changed.

I’m still working on my yellow chair in my living room, with the computer balanced on my lap (I know that’s not ideal, but that’s how I work best). I’m still knitting at night, and going for walks in the neighbourhood, and doing my yoga workouts at home. I’m still FaceTiming with my kids everyday. Not much has changed, except checking the graphs of the COVID spread every now and then.
Ironically, today’s post was all set to be on how to help your husband find community. I decided that was too much irony, and I’ll run it in a few months. But I thought I’d just pop in to say that, if you’re nervous, I get it. If you’re feeling anxious, I get it. May we all pull together and be kind to one another and look out for one another and protect one another.

Here’s my very uninformed thoughts about what should happen…

And just to start the discussion, here is my extremely uninformed opinion, based on reading a few news articles, which obviously makes me an expert (NOT).
Singapore and Taiwan have done a good job of keeping life relatively normal and keeping the spread of this thing relatively minimal and contained, even though it showed up there very early. What they’ve been doing is concentrating on tracking the actual cases and everyone those people have been in contact with. They have an army of police officer detectives helping to locate anyone a positive person has had contact with, sort of like a missing persons department. And then all those people are in mandatory self-isolation for 14 days. You must have your phone on you with geolocation enabled. Randomly throughout the day, you receive a text. You have five minutes to reply to the text with a picture of your surroundings.
It’s a big infringement on civil liberties, and we aren’t used to things like that.
But because of those infringements, they’ve managed to keep restaurants and malls and even schools open.
I saw a picture of schools in Taiwan; all the kids wear masks, and then at lunch a 3-way barrier is put up on the kids’ desks so they can take their masks off and eat. Then it’s back to work.
So these countries are focused on identifying the cases, and then containing them. But then regular life can continue for everyone else (with masks and precautions and lots of hand washing, of course).
I think we’re going to have to do something like that. Give a shelter in place in order, so that people can’t leave their homes for two weeks except for emergencies. That allows us to start from scratch again and know where the active cases are, and then track them. Then, after those two weeks, hopefully things can return to semi-normal for everyone else. But it will mean no one goes anywhere for two weeks. People can’t be stupid and have parties or visit friends.
I don’t know if that would work in North America or Europe, but it seems to be working in Singapore. I don’t know what other choices we have.
But again, I’m not an expert, and all I see is what’s in the news. I’m just praying that those making the decisions are making good ones, and that our governments will listen to the experts.

So, in the meantime, make the most of your quarantine!

Learn to knit! Take up a hobby. Organize your home and clean out closets. Don’t forget to check out my post last week on 15 things to do with your kids while you’re stuck at home.
And I’ll get back to finishing our manuscript for The Great Sex Rescue.
I had some good posts planned for this week on lust, which I’m going to run anyway, because I like them, and I’d like to give us something else to talk about. So check in this week–it’s going to be a good one (especially Wednesday! And the podcast).
And take care, everyone. Leave a comment and tell me how you’re doing, and if there’s any way we can pray for you. And as you read the comments, say a prayer. We’re all in this together.
 

Sheila Wray Gregoire

Author at Bare Marriage

Sheila is determined to help Christians find biblical, healthy, evidence-based help for their marriages. And in doing so, she's turning the evangelical world on its head, challenging many of the toxic teachings, especially in her newest book The Great Sex Rescue. She’s an award-winning author of 8 books and a sought-after speaker. With her humorous, no-nonsense approach, Sheila works with her husband Keith and daughter Rebecca to create podcasts and courses to help couples find true intimacy. Plus she knits. All the time. ENTJ, straight 8

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48 Comments

  1. Lindsey

    I am graduating next month, and we desperately wanted to get out of our travel trailer, but I’m unsure that I’ll be able to find a job. I’m sending out resumes early, just to see if I get any interest. I guess I’m going to need to lean heavily on the hospital jobs (I’m in HR), because that’s for sure going to stay open. Other than that, life is pretty much the same for us, self-quarantine is kind of our normal routine. 😂 Although when I do need to go to the grocery store, they’re often out of the things I’m there for, such a milk and eggs. However, we are blessed to have plenty of food, a safe home, and no immunodeficiency children to worry about. Still a lot for which to be thankful.

    Reply
    • Sheila Wray Gregoire

      Yes, grocery stores are tricky! We’re just going to be really creative with what we eat in the next little while (and I’ll likely be doing more baking than usual).

      Reply
  2. Becky

    Hi, Sheila! We’re mostly doing ok so far, though there’s definitely moments of anxiety. My husband is working from home, and we were able to stock up on some food (and managed to get some TP before it all vanished). I’m used to having my kids home since they’re all younger, so the biggest change for me is that all of my music activities are on hiatus. My state is shutting down all non essential businesses after today, and closed the beaches because a bunch of dummies crowded them when it was warm on Friday.
    The hardest things so far: not being able to break up the at home days with outings, even to my parents’ house. My dad was traveling and only got home less than a week ago. We miss our church a lot, which I guess is ironic after the theme of your posts last week, but they managed to start streaming yesterday and that helped. The scary one is that one of my cousins and her family probably have it, and I have an aunt who’s a hospital nurse in one of the hot spots (New Jersey) and also immunocompromised. She says it’s basically a war zone there, and the doctors are threatening to stop giving the nurses masks. She told them if that happens, they’re walking out, since the doctors are mostly monitoring them through tablets and the nurses are the ones actually in the rooms with the patients. My mom is sewing a bunch of masks to send her, because it’s better than no protection. (And to distract her from not being able to see her grandkids.)

    Reply
    • Sheila Wray Gregoire

      Wow! That’s awful about the hospitals. Just awful. We really aren’t experiencing anything like that (yet).
      I’m so glad you enjoyed yesterday’s church online! That’s great. It is so WONDERFUL to hear about healthy bodies of Christ, so please keep leaving those comments and encouraging others! I think when you’re in a bad church situation you assume that all churches are like that, so the more we get the message out that good churches are out there, you just have to look for them, then maybe people won’t give up. So keep talking about your good church situation!
      It is hard when you can’t break up the day. I went out everyday with my kids when they were small. Challenging times indeed!

      Reply
      • Doug

        Social distancing is sort of a way of life for me, since I travel so much with work. So far I have been able to continue my employment, but that is a mixed blessing. Not physically being there for my wife is something we have adapted to over the years but times like this make it much more difficult. We did break the “rules” yesterday and spent the morning with another couple and watched our church livestream from their home. In a general sense, except for not actually going to Church, our routine has not been impacted nearly as much as others, but there has been some impact nonetheless.

        Reply
        • Andrea

          I think it’s OK to hang out with another couple as long as you keep 6 feet apart. I see my neighbors sitting outside with a cup of coffee or glass of wine and chatting with each other from their lawn chairs 6 feet away.

          Reply
      • Lauren

        I’m giving birth in the next 3 weeks and really praying for sooner rather than later. As things ramp up around here, some hospitals have already stopped allowing husbands in the hospital for delivery, and I know that in some of the worst places, anesthesiologists are not available for epidurals anymore. While I know it’s physically possible to have a baby that way, my last delivery was pretty traumatic and I’m very unprepared to do this alone and med-free!

        Reply
        • Lauren

          (this wasn’t supposed to be a reply. Whatever.)

          Reply
          • Kayla

            @Lauren- I will pray your husband can be there for the birth!! I would seriously want to do home birth if it came to that. Praying for you & your family!

          • Kayla

            I really don’t understand why not allow husbands at the birth… if the husband is carrying the virus, the wife is too.

        • Sheila Wray Gregoire

          Oh, my goodness! Oh, Lauren, I’ve said a prayer for you right now. How tough!

          Reply
          • Lindsey

            If you do find yourself unable to recieve an epidural, see if they will allow you to deliver in a tub of warm water. They call it the “midwife’s epidural”. I had unmedicated water births for all for of my children, and getting in the tub after whatever laboring is done out of the water made all the difference in the world. I pray that your husband is able to be by your side for delivery.

          • Nicole

            I completely agree about the water, if you’re unable to get an epidural. I chose to go without meds for my second birth and while I didn’t actually push in the water, I did labor mostly in the tub and it was immensely better than any laboring I did outside of it! But, tubs are obviously not available in all hospitals, and you are right that even an unmedicated and out-of-the-water birth is absolutely possible. I’m sure you will be great no matter what, and at the end of the day, you’ll have a sweet little one lying on your chest <3 I will be praying for you, too!!!!

  3. Phil

    Hello all. I hope everyone is just as mildly effected by this situation as I am. That is my prayer. Thankfully my wife and I both have jobs that allow us to work from home. To this point it truthfully has been more of an inconvenience than problem. Our biggest challenge so far is maintaining peace in our family. We have had some really nice times as a family because we are “stuck” together. We have also had some battles with the kids and their behavior. This is an opportunity for my family to grow closer together. That is how I am looking at this. I hope others can find that too. Sheila mentioned families with abuse and what a concern for that is. I read some articles on the fact that being stuck at home in a family with abuse is absolutely the worst thing that could happen to them as their social settings outside the house is their safe haven. So prayers go out for those in that situation. I hope and pray for a swift end to this crisis and I thank everyone for being here. This is one of the places I come for peace and understanding and personal growth. The virus is getting closer to me. I am starting to know people who know people etc and my immune system is compromised by a form of Leukemia known as CLL. So I must be careful. I will be following the conversation today. Take care.

    Reply
  4. Amy

    Hi, we are doing well, but I am single mom and I share my kids with their dad. He works as a police officer. I am not sure how to handle sending the kids back and forth. I would like to keep them with me to avoid them getting something he may contract at work (I help care for my senior mom who has immune system issues) but he is not always reasonable when it comes to these things. Looking for some advice, and lots of prayer!

    Reply
    • Sheila Wray Gregoire

      I was wondering about how shared custody would work in these times! That does sound very difficult. I wonder what the police station is recommending? They may give isolation orders to their officers. I know when Keith goes back to work in the ER (if he does) that I will be moving out so that he can’t contaminate me, and can’t contaminate anyone else. I wonder if his superiors will recommend that, too?

      Reply
      • AspenP

        My sister-in-law ran into this. Her ex works for the Air Force and decided that it was best that he keep the kids since he might have already exposed them. He’ll have them for the duration which was his plan. He’s a completely unreasonable person and she’ll have no contact with them sadly.

        Reply
        • Sheila Wray Gregoire

          Oh, that’s awful. Really awful. How heartbreaking!

          Reply
  5. Lizzy

    As a introvert who doesn’t go out much I didn’t think I would be affected very much, but I have to admit, it’s a little tough mentally and emotionally.
    But, I have a lot to be thankful for and will focus on those things. My husband works in a small office so, at this point, still goes to work. They are discussing working from home, but either way, our income is not affected. My daughter is finishing university at home and still gets some shifts at work. My son lives in another province and is also still able to work as well. We are all healthy, so we have a lot to be thankful for.
    I’m a helper by nature so being restricted in what I can do is hard. My daughter and I printed a bunch of animal pictures and placed them around the park for families to find while out walking. This ‘safari’ has been a huge hit in our small town and it feels good to do something to help others through this.
    I’m definitely praying for the elderly and those at risk of abuse during this time. It breaks my heart to think that there are women children in unsafe situations right now.
    Thank you for checking in with your readers. I will be praying for people as I read their comments.

    Reply
    • Sheila Wray Gregoire

      Oh, Lizzy, I love that animal picture idea! That’s so sweet!
      In my neighbourhood, kids have chalked whole blocks of the sidewalk with really uplifting messages, which is so lovely.

      Reply
  6. Blessed Wife

    My brother and his fiance had to drastically alter their wedding plans, and now we will be unable to attend, so we’re pretty sad about that.
    Aside from that and the grocery shortages, I’m finding some real blessings in the quarantine! With all evening and extra-curricular activities suspended, I’m finding some much-needed rest, getting dinner ready earlier (because I can start cooking in mid-afternoon 😂), and spending lots of time in my newly expanded garden. I homeschool, so we are doing school as usual.
    My family is healthy except my youngest has a highly contagious virus that we would have to stay home for three weeks with anyway. Luckily only one of us has it, the rest can’t get it, and his quarantine coincides perfectly with the Corona shutdown, so hopefully we don’t have to do this twice!😅
    I have a feeling our garden expansion is going to come in very handy, and I’m hopeful we will be able to use it to bless our neighbors.
    God is good. The life he has blessed us with is a good one, and the quarantine has freed up more of our time to appreciate it. Blessings and good health to all of you! Hopefully the crisis will be fairly short-lived, and your jobs and lives will go on as usual. I know the economic effects of this virus are huge, so I am praying for a swift recovery for the economy as well as the people who have been infected.

    Reply
    • Sheila Wray Gregoire

      That’s lovely! I’m glad you’re able to get some rest and enjoy your family. Definitely one of the benefits of homeschooling–stuff like this doesn’t disrupt your life as much as usual.

      Reply
  7. Ina

    As a stay at home mom, I figured not much would change. I had no clue how much I depended upon our weekly trip to the library, church, and my parents’ house. Being cooped up is hard on all of us (doubly hard right now with a very fussy, sick baby who won’t sleep!) I keep hoping that our weather will turn and we’ll get spring at least, but really, when does spring ever come before April in SK? My brother’s wife is also 40 weeks pregnant and now her doula won’t be able to attend. Just the husband (at least that, I guess!) I vacillate between being super angry that I won’t be able to support postpartum or meet my nephew until who knows when and having a resigned peace. (Side note: you can still order takeout for new moms and support from afar!)
    On the bright side:I am extremely grateful that my husband’s work has been unaffected. My city’s general reaction seems to be extremely positive and supportive- there’s a huge facebook group where you can go to post your needs or volunteer. It’s been super heartwarming. The girls and I have also been able to make cards to send to great-grandma whose building is under complete lockdown and we’ve gotten the address of a senior resident home’s director in the states that we are making cards to send to so she can add them to the meal trays that go out there. I truly feel that now is a time when the church can shine and show that they are truly a body, not a building.

    Reply
    • Sheila Wray Gregoire

      That’s a lovely idea, Ina, with the cards! How kind. And I love the city Facebook group. I should see if we have one here.
      I hear you about being cooped up. We used to go out on outings everyday when the kids were younger. It’s hard, especially when you’re getting so little sleep!

      Reply
  8. Kya

    A barista at our local coffee shop was supposed to get married in a month. We asked what they are doing, and they postponed the wedding several months but are eloping on their original date, which seems like a great compromise.
    My husband and I both work in a small local grocery store, so we aren’t having isolation issues yet, though sometimes I wish we were. Most of our customers are very understanding (someone tipped one of our high schoolers $100 last week!) but it’s still a very stressful job to have right now. I worked 53 hours last week, even though we have reduced our open hours, this week will likely be the same.

    Reply
    • Sheila Wray Gregoire

      Oh, wow! I’m sure you never really thought of yourselves as essential services before, but now we’re learning that grocery store workers are really on the front lines! I’m glad people are still treating you well. I hope people keep good attitudes, especially when some things are sold out. If we all just band together, we’ll be fine. I hope you keep your energy up!

      Reply
    • Madeline

      I really feel for grocery store workers right now. Thank y’all so much for keeping us fed! Y’all really are so essential to our society!

      Reply
  9. Kristen

    Hi, Sheila! Thanks for asking. This is certainly a scary time.
    I’m a senior in college this year. I live in rural West Virginia, so for the last two years I have had to commute two hours one way to university. It’s been really hard, and I had to buy a new car last fall because my old one wore out, but I was always able to push through because I could see myself on the stage, in my cap and gown, receiving my diploma. That image truly has pulled me through some really long days. Now it’s cancelled. I wrote a letter to the university’s president and asked if interested seniors like me could participate in December’s commencement (if things are calmed down by then). He said the board is evaluating that option right now. It’s not ideal, but I worked really hard.
    I also lost my job last week. I look for our governor to put the state on lockdown. We have 16 confirmed cases as of last night, all travel-related, but our population is quite elderly. I think he wanted to put us on lockdown over the weekend, but our economy is already in terrible shape, and a total lockdown would finish it off, I think. Plus, we have a major opioid crisis, and unemployment exacerbates that. We’ve seen it plenty of times already. However, I’ve been trying to do my part and stay home if it’s not necessary. It’s hard, because I love being out around people, but if we all stay inside for a couple of weeks, hopefully we can make it better in the long run.
    Either way, I’m trying to be positive. I still have classes to finish from home. No one I know has died from this. Warmer days are on the way. And as much as I’ve doubted the last few years, I feel like God is here with us.

    Reply
    • Sheila Wray Gregoire

      That’s a great attitude, Kristen! I hope your state doesn’t get too bad with that proportion of elderly. I am worried about the economy as well, for sure. But it’s very encouraging to see people really pulling together. I know people did after the Spanish Flu and for the Great Depression again. May that be our story, too!

      Reply
  10. Hannah

    We’re doing okay. Both my husband and I are still working but we’re not sure for how long. It’s really hard not seeing people or leaving the house. I deeply miss being social. It’s only been a week; the thought of doing this for months overwhelms me. And, of course, the economy is tanking and people are dying and it’s all a mess. I’ve been struggling to process it emotionally.
    (also, the Spanish flu killed a lot more than 25,000 people; was that a typo?)

    Reply
    • Sheila Wray Gregoire

      yes, it’s supposed to be 25,000,000! I’ll go fix it. Whoops!

      Reply
  11. Bethany#2

    I’m lonely! I usually depend on driving over to my family’s house and Sunday service for socializing. My husband works security at a hospital, and we’ve put in a basic plan for if he gets it. I go to my parents for 2 weeks and he stays home. Or if I get it, he probably won’t be allowed to work during that time and so we’d just be home together…. going crazy. I’m not sure I could handle separating from him that long! But I’m trying to stay in the moment and stay home

    Reply
    • Sheila Wray Gregoire

      I know what you mean! I may have to move out for months on end if Keith goes back to work in the ER–at least unless I’m content to quarantine here with him and not see my kids and grandson, who are about to move to our area. Just taking it day by day right now!

      Reply
  12. Jess

    I am really struggling. I am a stay-at-home mama to 4 kids ages 7, 5, 3, and 1. The big two are usually in school. What normally keeps me sane on a day-to-day basis and the only thing that keeps my depression at bay is getting out of the house and seeing other people face to face every day.
    In our area, there is a mandatory stay-in-place order for 30 days starting tonight. This means no visits anywhere or to anyone, even family. My husband is still working outside the home so I am home alone with the four little ones. It’s only been a week and I can already feel myself slipping away from lack of social contact. I have never felt the same connection from facetime-type interactions as in person but I am trying to adjust.
    I feel guilty even complaining because I know there are so many people who have it worse than I do. But knowing other people struggle doesn’t make your own struggle feel any less real. I am trying to lean on the Lord and trust Him to carry me through this loneliness and isolation, but man it is hard! God has already shown me my own self-centeredness in this short time and I am thankful to know that He will use this to sanctify me and to draw the world to Him. Praise God that He is good, loving, all-knowing, compassionate, understanding, and redeeming. I am meditating on His attributes daily to get me through. I pray we all can trust in His character and truth during this time.
    Thanks for asking and giving us a place to connect Sheila!

    Reply
    • Sheila Wray Gregoire

      Jess, I think this sentence is so important: “But knowing other people struggle doesn’t make your own struggle feel any less real. ” This is true. We can be so thankful for what we have and so cognizant of our blessings, and at the same time feel weary and anxious and even desperate.
      I’ve said a prayer for you, Jess! “God, give Jess incredible sleep tonight and in the nights to come so that she is well rested. Let your peace descend upon her house so that the children enjoy each other and play with each other. May Jess find resources that help her and the children pass the day. May you send her signs that you still see her. May you bless her and give her encouragement that wells up from inside. And keep her husband and her family safe. Amen.”

      Reply
      • Jess

        Thank you for your prayer, Sheila. I shed a few tears reading it!

        Reply
    • Madeline

      Jess, my heart goes out to you. Don’t feel guilty for struggling with the isolation; its a completely understandable struggle! Humans are inherently social beings and we all need community. I’ll be praying that you are able to feel connected to loved ones through technology, although its not ideal!

      Reply
      • Jess

        Thank you, Madeline! I’ll take all the prayers I can get right now!

        Reply
  13. Arwen

    There is a LOT i can say about this but i’ll be called a conspiracy theorists. So instead i’ll just say, nothing has changed for me. I’m still going to work. All the things i used to do after work are still open albeit they’re closing earlier than normal. Places like the library, the park, grocery stores, movie theaters, public transportation (bus), are all open, they just close earlier, where i’m in CA. I did notice that the streets are emptier except for a few cars of people who have to work. No matter how much people disagree with me, i don’t like staying inside my house as i’m an extrovert, so i’m out even in this quarantine, it stresses me being locked inside the house and the depression might kill me faster than the virus, because we know depression, stress, anxiety, things like this kills people. So i’m volunteering as usual and then walking at the park, which there’re a lot families actually. Trust me parents get sick of being in the he same house with their children 24/7, their sanity is challenged. I don’t blame them for going out.
    But don’t worry once the elections are over this blow over and be forgotten like Ebola.

    Reply
  14. Anon

    I’ve spent most of the evening in tears. Our country is going into lockdown this minute. My fiance lives just up the road from me, and I’ve just had to say goodbye to him with no idea of when I will see him again – doing what is right has never been so hard. And on top of that, we have no idea of when we will be able to marry. In our country, you have to give several weeks’ notice unless there are exceptional circumstances (e.g. terminal illness or a member of the armed forces given immediate posting abroad), so we haven’t been able to bring our wedding forward. And to make things even worse, a lot of people here don’t realise this, and have assumed I WON’T bring the wedding forward because I’m set on having a ‘big party’. It’s so hurtful when I get criticized for caring more about a party than about being with my fiance, especially when I want to be with him so much!
    Oh, and I might just have lost my job too – our government stated that we can only leave home for essential work that cannot be done at home and later in the same directive, stated we could only leave home for ‘essential travel’ such as to work that could not be done at home. So whether I can work tomorrow depends on whether the ‘essential’ applies to the job or the travel!

    Reply
    • Sheila Wray Gregoire

      Oh, I’m so sorry! I’ll say a prayer for you, too. Lord, help this poor woman as she’s really hurting with so much uncertainty right now. Thank you for bringing such a wonderful man into her life, whom I know you have used to bring great healing in many ways to her. I pray that you will be with both of them as they try to do what’s right, and honour them for that. I pray that you will give them peace and patience. Even in these difficult days, show them ways that they can be a blessing to others. Let them pay no heed to others’ words that may hurt, but let them lean in and listen even more intently on you. I pray that you will protect their financial situation and their health, and I pray that you will show them a way that they can be married soon. In your name, Amen.

      Reply
      • Anon

        Thank you for your lovely prayer, Sheila. Feeling a bit calmer this morning. Cross with myself that I wasted our last precious evening in floods of tears, but as you say, I am so blessed to have such a wonderful man for my fiance. And at least now I know he copes brilliantly when I turn into a soggy mess! Praying for everyone else commenting on this post, as we deal with so many different challenges.

        Reply
  15. Another Anon

    I’m also in a country that is about to go into lockdown for a minimum of four weeks. I have a son and a daughter-in-law in the medical field that I am understandably concerned about. Our whole family was together for a son’s wedding just over a fortnight ago. I had no idea that that could be the last time I would be cuddling my grandchildren for a while. (Selfishly, I am glad that the wedding could go ahead as others are now having to cancel their plans.) My mother-in-law is elderly and vulnerable. My family of origin are all overseas. And today we received an unexpected diagnosis and will have to tell our children without being able to offer any physical comfort. But so far we are well, God is merciful, and we continue to call on Him.

    Reply
    • Sheila Wray Gregoire

      It is so hard, isn’t it! I’m glad you were able to celebrate the wedding. May this all be over soon, and may the Lord keep our loved ones safe, and especially look out for those in the Third World who don’t have access to the kind of medical services that we do.

      Reply
  16. Tory

    I am a scientist so I still have to go into work every day, as I’m deemed “life-sustaining workforce” lol. My husband is working from home. Schools are closed so we are homeschooling our two older kids, we also have a toddler. I am loving the closeness of all of us being home. I finally caught up on chores I’ve been putting off for months. My house has never been more organized. I got to finally make recipes that I had bookmarked for months. We go for a walk every day. I haven’t played the piano in years, but picked it up again and am teaching myself a new Beethoven sonata. I’m slowly working though all 800 pages of Alexander Hamilton’s biography by Ron Chernow. I started planning my veggie garden and hope to get it going as soon as the weather warms up. I don’t want to be flippant as I realize a lot of people are adversely affected by this virus and the quarantine, but I am loving this time 🙂 its a homebody’s dream come true lol

    Reply
    • Sheila Wray Gregoire

      I think finding joy where you can grab it is a good thing. You don’t have to feel guilty! Let’s just keep praying for those close to us, and for the world as a whole. And if you practice piano, too, well, that’s some good that God is bringing out of this situation!

      Reply
  17. Sarah O

    We’re hanging tough and counting our blessings…but this is tough.
    Four kids, oldest is 5, twins are 18 mos, miracle baby is 11 weeks. We both work full time and are blessed to be able to work from home. Right now we are alternating between watching the kids for a day and working a day, which is really intense. Don’t know how long our employers will allow us to continue this arrangement.
    In our area, even health professionals treating COVID-19 patients have been denied testing. The shortage of tests is making the whole thing impossible to combat – none of the statistics mean anything because there’s not an accurate denominator.
    I’ve asked my parents not to visit for two weeks to be sure none of us got exposed before schools closed.
    My nephew and his partner, who was still on maternity leave, have both been laid off. This is their second child. My cousin is a healthcare worker in a senior center near Atlanta, she has two small children at home. My college roommate is a school teacher in a state that has just closed down schools for the remainder of the year and it’s unclear how this will impact her pay/employment.
    Lots of bad news rolling in and uncertainty on the horizon. Lots of energy output and not much sleep.
    But we are in a rural area, spring is coming, my kids are darling, my husband is a good man, and God is providing for us. We haven’t run out of milk, bread or toilet paper yet and may even make it to the end of the week – c’mon, stock trucks!
    I am reminding myself that every generation has seen life-altering circumstances, before-and-after events. Whether war, illness, or innovation. Looking for ways to help. Me and my mom are getting free kits from JoAnns fabrics to make face masks for our hospital. Trying to pay ahead at the daycare to keep their workers employed. Doing what we can even while our hands are full.
    Praying and fasting this Sunday the 29th.
    Jesus, please watch over Keith, Sheila, their girls and their whole family. Show yourself to be good and faithful through this time. Give Keith wisdom and discretion as he prepares to use his expertise as a doctor, and bless the work of his hands to heal the sick. Give Sheila patience and peace as she prepares to be separated either from him or from her children, and give her new and encouraging ways to minister after such an emotionally trying year. Please bless the girls and keep them safe and healthy with their young families. Make your presence known and help us to spur on to good deeds, rather than give in to fear and despair. Remind us that the ending is already written. In Your Name, Amen.

    Reply
    • Sheila Wray Gregoire

      Oh, thank you, Sarah! That’s lovely. And i think your attitude is wonderful, too. Other generations have faced this and worse. We have been blessed; we can get through this. And in this, God still wants us to reflect Him.

      Reply

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