A TGB READER STORY: Sometimes I Forget
Letting Elders Die to Save the Economy?

The Alex and Ronni Show

A week ago day, I felt kind of funny. Not quite well, but not sick either. The next day, I knew something was definitely wrong. I checked the pharmacy and grocery store off my to-do list that morning, and when I got home, I went to bed.

Fatigue, body pains, temperature of 100.x and breathing difficulty. I have a home oxygen concentrator so I used that to help me sleep Thursday night and again on Friday night, a day during which my condition didn't change much.

In the world we live in now, of course, I had only one thing on my mind.

On Saturday, I telephoned my primary care physician's office. After a discussion of my symptoms, it was decided that I should stay home but if my breathing became more difficult, I should call 911 and go to the emergency room.

On Sunday, I felt slightly better and my temperature was almost down to normal but I was still tired and ache-y and mostly stayed in bed. My breathing was not not back to what it should be but it was better.

On Monday, feeling like I was back among the living, I had a previously-scheduled telehealth meeting with my palliative care provider. Of course, no one can be certain without a test, but he doesn't think I had/have COVID-19 and pointed out that beyond the seasonal flu, there are plenty of other bugs floating around.

At my instigation, we had a come to Jesus discussion about how I could expect to die if I did have COVID-19. It's not pleasant with lungs as deeply compromised as mine but there are drugs to help. The key point for me was that we didn't talk about IF I would die if I contract the virus, only how.

It's Tuesday as I write this. I did the Skype call this morning with Alex to record today's Alex and Ronni Show and was surprised how tired I was afterwards. But of course that makes sense after four or five days in bed.

Mostly, this interruption to my routine left me considering my personal end of days more closely than I have done for quite awhile and I'll bring that up another time.

The reason for this intro to The Alex and Ronni Show is that I was still tired, quite crabby and it shows in the video. So I'm making a public apology to Alex for my bad behavior.

And now that I've written this, I'm going to go take a nap.


Sending love, healing thoughts, and wishing I was there to push warm drinks at you.

Whew! I’ve been thinking of you coping with the current malaise. Keep safe and healthy Ronni! And the same to all your followers.

I’m disturbed by your recent health issues and encouraged by your insistence on discussing your worst case options with your palliative care provider. Thank you for sharing your journey.

I should start this comment by saying "Doctor Doolittle here", for the only folks I 'talk' to, other than a trustworthy daily visits from my son, are the feathered and furred in my back yard. I could say I'm cookin' with a  wee shovel these days.

It is difficult to learn the art of NOT giving 'medical advice' Ronni, when nursing was my life for so long.  But unlike the Twit-In-Chief in Washington, I will not advise you to try "Fish-Tank Cleaner". One reels in dis-believe everyday if you follow the news even briefly! And...enough of that!

Regarding " your Fatigue and Naps":  I believe we can trust that feeling like we can thirst or hunger.  The  (wants to survive) brain starts waving these Semafore flags of discomfort so we can do something about it.  Over my life I have come to really rely on what my family laughingly calls my "sleep cure".  Better than a hot toddy and cheaper!  If I could have sold NAPS to my patients for what they are worth I would be a rich woman today.

Actually still functioning on my own after 83 years is "rich" in many ways. I also count Time Goes By and your faithful contributors of comments as part of that wealth. Thank you all. 

Finally RX--Rest when you need to , dear lady. It is very restorative, while remembering  that as we age EVERYTHING takes longer.

My best thoughts to you and everyone during these very frightening times.

Sometimes just doing things for fun or what you really enjoy might bring back your energy
Well wishes

Thank you, Ronni, you have cleared up something at my house !

I have been actually craving my old Auntie's Pickled Beets lately. Today I'll follow my own advice and make some. Already have the canned beets in the pantry I just bought. Trusting the aforementioned "Semaphore" waving? Maybe!

My jaw dropped when I read this, Ronni, because you are describing exactly the way I have been feeling for the past couple of weeks. The only difference is that I do not have lung issues, and although I feel feverish on and off, my thermometer always tells me that I do not have a fever. Maybe it’s broken. I have only shared this with my spouse and a few of my friends who are gifted with a gallows sense of humor. I am describing my current condition as having “A touch of coronavirus. Don’t tell anyone.”

I know if I had the real thing I would be much sicker and I don’t mean to undermine the seriousness of this epidemic. However, we don’t know everything about this virus and someday we may find out that it flies over some of us and we feel the mere shadow of its wing.

May we all stay well.

Distant hugs... xx

I would hope you have someone to call on for groceries and pharmacy instead of your going out. My pharmacy has drive thru, grocery has curb service, call ahead with charge card and one canor someone your choice picks it up. There are many helpful resources that help and keeps us in lock down if we choose to do so. I live in a fairly rural area and resources, help, are plentiful once I reached out. Be well, be safe Ronnie and all.

Despite being crabby due to feeling cruddy, you still have a beautiful smile!

Some pharmacies have delivery service as do many grocers now--or at least curb pickup--but I imagine you're aware of that.

Sending you positive vibes to get through this in fine fiddle.

Paramount is that you take care of yourself Ronni!

Rest, nap, have an edible, whatever works to make you feel comfortable and rested.

Us, your devoted followers, will understand completely if you need to take a few days off so you can rebound. More stories by readers? Guest writers? Whatever it takes!

To all my family at TGB: stay home, go out only if you absolutely have to, and continue to be connected here where you know you have family and friends.

Sending hugs and love Ronni. My heart just froze for a moment when I saw this. Actually I saw your video on U-tube last night. Get well, stay well is my wish for you. My lungs are crap and the flu or a cold knocks the stuffing right out of you when they pop up. I had a similar discussion with my doctor, the rx was rest and fluids duh and the same emergency instructions. My favorite comfort things are hot-ish fluids, tea, coffee and even warm water and a microwaved rice pad on my chest. Relaxes those chest muscles a little. Love you.

A whole bunch of us are talking about possible death -- without having a compromised body. Naps are wonderful. Jokes and funny convos are really terrific!.

Many good wishes and blessings for you dear heart, you have been through a very rough patch. I am sorry to hear that you've been suffering.

This morning, walking my dog, I was woozy, short of breath, had to stop and put my hands on my knees. Got back home, tea, sit down. Later a friend called, I told her my "symptoms" and she immediately said "Oh that's the pollen, it's terrible this year." Fear and physical problems do not encourage clear thinking, that's for sure. I know about pollen in this area, and yet it never crossed my mind.

Good resting to you Ronni, and not too much virus news............makes us miserable, thereby lowering the immune system.

I’m very sorry to read you’ve been so under the weather, Ronni. Between your chronic conditions & this godawful virus scare, I’m sure the stress just made things worse. Well, it certainly made me appreciate this week’s ‘Alex & Ronni Show’ even more than usual, you two are my favorite formerly-married couple since Sonny & Cher :-)

Since you’ve gotten all the advice you probably need, I am tipping my head west & transmitting good vibes in your general direction. Please get well soon.

I think it was Covid-19.
I had almost exactly the same thing the first week of this month. I did not think it was Covid-19 at the time but then I read Tom Hanks’ description of his and Rita’s symptoms I had a come to Jesus moment.
I have done a lot of reading every day for the last month on the CoronaVirus and have found out not only do some people have no symptoms at all, the symptoms can vary from a cough to a gastro thing and just yesterday a tv doctor was talking about it can present as a cardio event.
I spoke with my doctor today and told her about my experience and she agreed it was possible.
I was back and forth to OHSU the week before getting sick and could have easily picked it up in a hospital bathroom, the mri waiting room, the mri room on a different floor or the pharmacy. I was conscious of what I was touching but was lost in the halls for a few minutes also.
I prefer to believe I had it but thanks to the chump in charge had no test and realize I also may not have had it.
But I think I did.
Such is the dark world we live in now.

Ronni, I am facing in your direction on the compass and sending good vibes and best wishes from 3,000 miles away. Rest, sleep and please get better. “Golden slumbers/Fill your eyes/Smiles awaits you when you rise...” Will be waiting to hear you're feeling better.

Ronni, I do not think you had or have Coronavirus. Just a passing ordinary virus in my opinion. You are allowed to be cranky considering your overall condition with this virus on top of it all. You and Alex are always eager to bash Trump, but I overlook it due to your overall goodness. I have to tell you that I think you look very nice in brown. We are living proof that good people with polarized political views can get along.

I am just today beginning to hear reports from people I actually know about having the same physical symptoms you've reported here. Without testing everyone who experiences these, we will never know what they've all had, but it's interesting and disturbing that I'm now hearing first hand reports instead of just numbers on the news.

It could be the real thing, or it could be the power of suggestion and we're worrying and fretting ourselves into a more vulnerable state that allows any germs we pick up to become more powerful than they might have otherwise. Listening to news and other reports, and reading repeatedly about the symptoms, how quickly the virus is spreading, and how by next week or tomorrow this thing will have grown exponentially, and how old people should be sacrificed to it for the benefit of the economy . . . my goodness, how can we expect to feel at the peak of health and in good spirits?? If we are managing to sustain ourselves at all in the midst of these conditions I would say we're doing pretty well.

I hope that your symptoms of whatever it was have abated and that you are getting good rest. We all need respite from this isolation, fear and stress at some point, but who knows when that might come? In the meantime, please take good care of yourself and if that means finding someone to help with that for a bit, I hope you will consider it.

I came back to the USA on Feb 23rd, on the day the first COVID-19 was announced in Israel, where I had been on a tour for a week. I left with a cough, aches and pains, very low energy, low fever, no appetite. My sister, who was on the tour also came down with the same symptoms, but it took longer for her to feel better. She was diagnosed with seasonal flu, but it was so much like covid-19!

Sweetie, I hear you. The anxiety IS the worst thing.
You're not crabby, you are amazing.
I'm reaching my arms out, all the way from Amsterdam, The Netherlands, to hold you and rock you. And when your anxiety calms down a little, i let you do the same to me.
Much love.

There may have been little opposition to this voiced initially, but locally I have heard a great deal of opposition, For one thing, sacrificing the elders does not even make practical sense as a solution to this situation. Who are all these 70+ year-olds who are going to do the work of all the younger people who are going to continue to stay home and out of harm's way? We are suddenly supposed to know how to do all these jobs, be able to get to them, and be physically and mentally capable of taking them on? Obviously the younger people aren't going to be there to train and give us access to all we would need -- computers, passwords, files . . . The world works differently than some of us who have been retired for a while may be familiar with. And who is going to go along with this? Are we to be put in chains and forced to do these jobs?

Over the past week, I have discovered a very entertaining and educational history podcast and I've spent hours of listening to the host tell the story of the Achaemenid kings of Persia. Had anyone told me a few months ago that I would be spending my days this way, while confined to my house to escape exposure to a deadly virus that is creeping around the world, I would have been certain that person was rather insane. Yet, here I am eagerly waiting for the next block of time I can pick up the headphones and click on that magical link that takes me back nearly 3,000 years. The time of these Kings of Kings have been some of the most formative in the history of the world -- determining what sort of government takes hold, whether most people live in slavery or freedom, the value of lives and opportunities based on gender, age, income and class. . . And now here we are, perhaps living through one. Weird.

Somehow I posted this to the wrong blog post. It was meant for Friday's not Wednesday's. I can't move it, but I'll copy it to the right day. Sorry about that -- too many days cooped up at home.

The "non-Pollyanna of Ageing" is still around in case anyone missed me--HA! Bet at least a few of the folks who opposed death with dignity laws are rethinking their position. Personally, I'd like to know that there's an adequate supply of the right drugs should I fall seriously ill with C-19 and need a ventilator. I haven't seen availability of end-of-life drugs mentioned anywhere.

I'm 83 and basically healthy (except for pain), but fully realize that I and my 90 Y/O spouse could be among the "expendables" in this pandemic. Thanks to The Orange Blob and his $ycophant$, our country squandered precious time to prepare and ramp up essential medical equipment. They knew this was coming in January! Whether I'm still here or not, I hope he loses the election "bigly" by the widest margin in history. Unfortunately, I understand that a large percentage of Republicans--many of whom are 65+ and may be seriously affected by C-19--still support him. Unbelievable!

Of course, I'd prefer to remain alive for a while longer so am doing my best to stay healthy, comply with our Governor's stay-home order and surf the web for items like disinfectant wipes, bleach and paper towels. Now that I have plenty of time to clean, I don't want to use up my limited supply of such products since I have no idea when I can get more.

We do all know Mr. Trump will be 74 in June, right?

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