health

Be Thankful

Be thankful

If you are worried about how many arguments you and your partner will have over the tv remote (or any other mundane ‘discussion’).

Be thankful

There are many people suddenly finding themselves confided to a house with an abusive partner.

If you are worried about entertaining your children 24/7.

Be thankful

Our education system was doing a fantastic and often thankless job before.

If you are worried about not having enough food.

Be thankful

There are people around the world literally starving this very second.

If you are worried about not seeing your friends or loved ones.

Be thankful

Thousands of old and vulnerable people in our country have lived in isolation for years, while we are being asked to do it for mere weeks.

If you are suddenly worried about your health.

Be thankful

Many people in our country live in fear of their terminal or life limiting condition every day.

Be thankful.

For this day.

For the time with your loved ones.

For the time to slow down.

For the time to connect.

For the stillness.

For the quiet.

For the contemplation.

Yes we have all suddenly been plunged into uncertainty, into a situation we have never faced before, but there is so much to be thankful for.

While many people in our world have faced wars, starvation, extreme poverty, homelessness, abuse and more, we are being asked to spend time at home with our loved ones (who we chose to live with).

We have an abundance of technology that connects us.

We have books, music, film and games.

We have nature.

We have love.

We have food.

We have shelter.

We have each other.

We have life.

Be thankful.

Be thankful.

Be thankful.

health

The Coronavirus, Cancer and a Compromised Immune System

People keep asking me if I am anxious about getting the coronavirus.

It seems a logical question… after all I don’t have a spleen so I am immunocompromised every single day for life… I’m also currently on chemotherapy which suppresses my immune system even further making it almost non existent. I also have multiple lung tumours from my stage four ovarian cancer and yet my answer to this question may surprise you.

Because my answer is no.

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Here’s why.

  • Every day for the past four years I’ve lived with a terminal condition. I face death every single day. Coronavirus does not change that for me. It doesn’t make my fear, or likeliness, of death more prominent… it’s prominent enough!
  • Since having my spleen removed 3.5 years ago I’ve been immunocompromised meaning that seasonal flu, mumps, measles, chicken pox and many other ‘every day’ conditions could kill me. Spending my life in fear of this isn’t going to do me any favours… or save my life for that matter …instead I chose to be proactive with common sense and good hygiene. It’s literally all I can do!
  • I’ve worked in infection control and have a good understanding of how to wash my hands correctly and practice effective measures to limit the spread of pathogens. I do this anyway. Not just when there is a virus risk.

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Do you know what worries me more?

  • THE PANIC BUYING I’m witnessing of food, toilet roll, antibacterial gel and medical supplies.

Many immunocompromised people (myself included) can’t buy antibacterial gel they need every day of their lives because people have stock piled. Don’t even get me started on the disgusting humans who are selling it for ridiculous prices on eBay. Isn’t it sad that this outbreak is showing us some of the worst traits of human society.

Can someone please explain what this stock piling of toilet paper all about?!

  • THE FEAR in society.

Driving change based on fear never works. Change should be driven by information and education. Empowering people with information on how to practice effective hand cleanliness and take appropriate hygiene measures is much more effective. So is educating people on how viruses spread by using easy to understand resources – again, not by using fear.

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So what do I do to avoid the fear and the threat of viruses today, in the future and for the past four years?

  • I wash my hands using the recommend guidelines.
  • I don’t touch door handles or taps. I use tissue or my elbow.
  • I use a neti pot to clean my sinuses every day – sometimes twice a day.
  • I use an ear thermometer to check my temperature every day.
  • I avoid unwell people (where possible) by asking loved ones not to spend time with me if they, or their children, are unwell… I’m very strict on this and my loved ones are very accommodating!
  • I use antibacterial gel (only when hand washing isn’t an option).
  • I don’t share drinks, food, cutlery, bottles etc ever.
  • I keep my immune system as strong as possible with a good diet, exercise, meditation and supplements – all proven to help!…yes the meditation too!
  • I don’t stress or worry about getting unwell because stress is proven to lower the immune system so, in fact, the more you worry about getting a virus the more at risk you make yourself!
  • Beyond that… I just get on with my life knowing that I am doing everything I can to keep myself safe.

That’s all any of us can do: take responsibility for our own hygiene (and the hygiene of those in our care) and avoid seeing people if we are unwell.

Stress, fear, anxiety and worry aren’t going to protect us.

But education and good hygiene are.

Stay safe.

Wash your hands.

Self isolate if you aren’t well.

And don’t add to the drama by panic buying! Please!