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The Emotional Response

by: Okieman

Fri Jul 24, 2009 at 12:28:35 PM EDT


There has been some discussion lately on the forum concerning how we often set aside our emotions while evaluating pandemic flu news/issues.  This diary is for discussion of pandemic related emotions and feelings.
Okieman :: The Emotional Response
As I start this diary, the pandemic is still in it's beginning stage.  As it progresses over time there will be a myriad of emotions which will likely be evoked.  Emotions and feelings are not objective things.  And often they are very complex.  Self evaluation is not always easy.  Sometimes, simply putting down your emotions in words helps one address them.  Or maybe, what you have to say here is meant to help others going through the same adjustment reaction you went through concerning pandemic issues.  If you feel the need to talk about it, this is the place.

Two Things To Remember:

There is much unknown about this pandemic and what the future holds.

The prime rule for this diary: "Be Kind To One Another".  

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Confusion ...
... is confusion an emotion? Here goes anyway ~

- I'm confused about my own motives for monitoring this pandemic so closely and coming back to FW on almost a daily basis. I started coming to FW a few years ago for two reasons: 1. A healthy 26 year old semi-professional rugby playing friend of mine caught seasonal influenza, went to bed one night and did not wake up the following day (official cause of death: influenza) 2. I read a report on the train home one night about H5N1 which scared the life out of me, where the virologist said "we know it's coming, we just don't know when". But ... is it just a little bit exciting too? Does it take us away from the more mundane aspects of our daily lives? Or is it because of a sense of community and belonging (or as my husband would have it 'you're all mad together').

- How worried should I be about AH1N1? - is it true what some of the papers say; hype, fear-mongering, commerical interests, or is it a doomsday scenario where 'we're all gonna die!!!"? My job is about creating realistic and credible communications for a whole range of complex issues and it is always painful to get to the crux of the matter, but I always get there in the end. With this, however, I still have no idea where we are, where we're going or what the facts are.

- Why am I so bothered about this when people are dying all over the world in huge numbers from poverty, disease, war, persecution ... Why don't I focus my efforts on these areas instead and use my skills to good effect, no matter how miniscule that effect might be?

- What do I tell friends and family about this? "Ignore it, it's no worse than seasonal influenza for most people and no more likely to mutate" or "stock up as much as you can and run for the hills?"

Yep ... confusion.


Fanny - I have the same thoughts...
I also wonder why I have been checking this web site many times daily, when I know very well that there are deaths and illnesses happening daily that I have no control over... why is this one getting to me so? I have prepped as best I can, and I remind myself daily that in my local area, tho I hear rumors of folks being sick, I don't see a lot of changes or problems, nor do I get out much to risk exposure(work from home, deliberately limiting trips away). And yet, this flu really has captured my attention.

One thought I had was that I am actually able to help here by corralling some of the information that seems so sparse in the MSM... and that gives me a sense of effectiveness (that I don't have about AIDS, or auto accidents for ex.). And I do try to alert friends and family to other hazards besides this, so that's not much different.

But I also think perhaps I'm worried because I don't know how worried to be! There's a huge difference between having some items out of stock in the store and having social systems grind to a snail's pace or a halt! And there is a part of me very frightened about potentially hearing the kind of news that you did, with your friend (that must have been heartbreaking!)

And on top of the worry, I catch myself feeling resentful at the responses from friends, associates, family - either a knowing smile ("she's one of those nuts") or a placating comment - or outright scorn! What is it about this pandemic that causes people to treat others like tinfoil hatters?? I don't get the same response when I warn friends about bisphenerol-A, for instance...

So... just soem random thoughts, for now.


[ Parent ]
Confusion...
yeah, I'm confused. The problem is I feel that I am right to be concerned about panflu and I am very angry with people who swallow the line they are fed without even considering the alternative. This conflicts badly with a desire to be proven right, so I really don't know whether I am following the news so closely in order to keep ahead of the game or to reinforce my sense of my rightness. Especially as I live in the West and have enough money to prep as much as I wish.

Then I read about young people (in the West) dying in their own homes - presumably this means they sickened so quickly there was no time to get them to hospital - and I just get furious with the bloggers who keep regurgitating the "mild" thing. And I read about the 100+ B2H H5N1 infections in Egypt and I get furious with the bloggers who state blandly that this virus is a very "stable" one, as if they knew anything of the sort.

And I feel guilty that my three or four efforts at evangelising for prepping have failed. I have bit my tongue in order to avoid a row with my friend who thought her occupational health nurse was the fount of all knowledge because she had been to a flu workshop. How will I feel if TSHTF and something awful happens to my friends or family and I didn't make that stand?

I have been prepping for some years (although it was a purely mental exercise for most of that time) but I was only prepping for physical hardship - electricity down and that sort of thing. It wasn't until I read the Sick Room/Body Bags chapter that I actually confronted the thought that we may not be able to SIP in time and I might lose a child. I faced the fear and have put it away again in order to prep more effectively.

Sorry for the late-night ramble!


[ Parent ]
Why? Because we can prepare
While you might be experiencing some confusion it sounds more like ... well, a little bit like guilt.  Why should you suddenly get pulled into the idea of pandemic flu when all the other killers out there haven't really grabbed your attention in the same way.

The "you" in the following statements are generalized.  It could just as easily be "we."

Well, you do address a lot of those other killers even if subconsciously.  You wear a seatbelt, you have your childhood vaccinations, you are not promiscuous and/or practice safe sex, etc.

Pandemics are novel in that many people (if not all) have no immunity.  Because of this they require conscious preparation.  Something happened in your life whether directly or indirectly that made a place in your brain that is more aware of the potential impact.  It may have been aware of a personal impact but then you've also extrapolated that to a regional and then worldwide impact.  

There is nothing wrong with that.  

Why aren't more people aware?  Of those that are truly unaware it is because they lack the perspective and life experiences that would trigger a response in their brain.  Of those that have life experiences that should trigger the response?  The only thing I can offer is willful blindness because they don't want to see the issue for what it is for whatever reason.

You are neither of those things ... you just feel bad (so it seems) that other "bad stuff" doesn't get you all hot and bothered as pandemic issues have.  Don't treat it as a guilty pleasure.  Understand that you just "saw the light" as a culmination of things that you have experienced in your own life.

Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world, indeed it is the only thing that ever has. -- Margaret Mead


[ Parent ]
I hope I never have to think........
At this point I have revamped the plan and gotten the items on the "top-off" list, and then some, a few times. That is an adjustment reaction all to itself and we covered that here a few months back.

Now, as the fall swiftly closes in on us, I am worried for friends and co-workers who are oblivious or know but think it won't happen to them or the government will take care of it or there'll be a vaccine or whatever they think. Many of them have little ones, ugghhh.

They are so focused on the fact that there haven't been many real serious illnesses or deaths that they just don't realize that the illness itself, as it pertains to individuals (though it'll be bad enough as flu always is) isn't the biggest issue. Or at least it's not as I see it. It's what comes of 30 or 40% of the workforce being ill. I cite the 20 of 40 firemen being ill in Hawaii incident. I can explain the ramifications of JIT from the top down and the bottom up. I can paint the whole ugly big picture of overrun hospitals. Still they brush it off.

I am finding that the strength of denial is far surpasses the that of common sense. What flippin difference does it make if you buy 10 cans of tuna this week or 1 each over the next 10 weeks? But I guess that would mean admitting to yourself that "it" is a real threat.

As I try to get the (illness = absenteeism rate = probable service disruptions) message across and people roll their eyes, I can't help thinking....I hope I never have to think "I tried to tell you, I would have helped you prepare, but you wouldn't listen".

I don't understand how they can not understand.


Emotions?
How about being terrified that many of my loved ones won't make it thru the winter? Will I die and leave sweet hubby alone? Will I have to watch my soul-mate die? My mom,my son 500 miles away,my precious great nieces and nephews?
Preps for physical needs-done to the best of our ability,but can we (I) bear up under what we (I) may face IF the flu turns vicious?
I've lurked for nearly 2 years and learned a great deal of useful information from all of you wonderful members of FW. Just one question--how do you deal with the fear that you must feel at times as well?      

fear
I think the only way to cope with the inevitable fear is to just get on and live your life as you would be doing if H1N1 didn't exist...ok it makes sense to follow the advice on hygiene, to try and avoid sick people as much as possible and to be on the look out for serious symptoms should you develop influenza.. but if you live only for tomorrow, and think that tomorrow will be some living hell,  then you miss what is in front of you to be enjoyed today... my granny more or less decided once she hit 55 that the only way to live to a ripe old age was to go nowhere and just sit in her chair in her bedclothes.. ok she did survive to be 88, but she missed out on living for 33 years and I bet by the end, another day at such a price wasn't worth it , even to her..  

[ Parent ]
How to live with "this"
Guess it varies, but for me:

1. prayer, trust in God

2. sugar-free lime margaritias

3.live for the moment!! Plan trips, enjoy everything, as you prep.

4.Making prepping sort of a hum-drum thing, not the center of one's universe.

Sort of a Plan A and Plan B approach to me....

It is better to look ahead and prepare than to look back and regret.


[ Parent ]
How to avoid the fear
Well, it ain't easy and it can be a steady battle.

However, when prepping becomes a lifestyle rather than a hobby it begins to permeate your life in a way that leaves behind it feelings.  Sometimes contentment (not always), sometimes confidence (not alwasy) ... but in general it leaves you in a place where you know that you are doing something constructive and that relieves anxiety and fear.

As far as my fear for others ... I've shared over the years with the ones that I care about; however, I cannot force anyone to recognize and/or take action.  I had to find that place where you begin to accept that other people do have personal responsibility.

Some may view it as a cop out or lame excuse.  I do not.  

I see it the same way I do when my oldest started driving.  You've given them the information.  The now have their "I am a legal adult" card.  They take their own personal responsibility in hand each time they get behind the wheel.  I had to learn to let go ... and boy was that hard.  I still keep tabs on her, if she is working late she calls when she is on her way home as an example, but even that will one day end when she moves out on her own.  

At some point you have to take inside you the understanding that you aren't always in control.  You've done what you can and now they are responsible for the rest.

It applies to alot of things in life.  Doesn't mean I won't grieve for those that are hurt but I refuse to destroy my psyche by taking on the responsibilities that aren't mine to take on.  I am not omnipotent.  I am not omniprescent.  I am not omniscient.  I am one woman doing what she can and to think any other way I've found to be destructive and even a little arrogant.

Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world, indeed it is the only thing that ever has. -- Margaret Mead


[ Parent ]
living with this raw reality
of the pandemic now being front and center rather than "sometime ahead" is making me more intense in what I say about it to my immediate family.   It's become very personal to me; I knew that it would, but now it's here on top of us.  Both of my adult children have asthma, as do I; my favorite cousin has severe diabetes; all our grandchildren are in grade school or younger.  Since none of them have ever bought into the prepper messages, I've switched to the very bare bones basics of sharing info on how to take care of someone who has it (supplies, techniques, warning signs), having at 2 weeks or more of food and water, and brief updates on what's going on that isn't being reported in the MSM.  The seriousness of my tone seems to be catching their attention this time.  My own quiet dread of what might be ahead for them, and myself, now communicates itself better than it ever did.  They're becoming teachable, at least for having the most immediate skills they may soon need.

I most have to deal with that dread when I read the daily updates about what's going on with the flu.  The fear passes when I leave the computer and then go about the business of living my regular life.  Oh, it morphs into wariness when I go out in public to shop or attend church, but otherwise it seems to stay somewhere off in the corner.  Yes, I keep up with the preps but like Grace says, it's become more of a hum drum thing after several years of doing it.  "This too will pass" is a quote that has helped me keep my perspective through all sorts of trial and tribulations over the years.

I am aware though that I do see the details of my day with a heightened sense of appreciation and thankfulness, almost like being on a lovely trip where you want to drink in all the mountains and bird songs and new  friendships so that you can savor the memory of them in years to come.  Underneath it all, a deep religious faith sustains me.

Now I have to decide when it is that I'll get down and serious about SIP, and hope that DH agrees to do the same.  It will mean giving up seeing the children and grandchildren, probably for months and months.  Unless of course I'm called on to go and take care of them because they have a serious case of the flu.  Just the thought of separating myself from them hurts almost too much to bear.  If they call for help I'll be there in a heartbeat and let the chips fall where they may.  

Now, thank you, I'll just go and do a little whistling in the dark again.  Strong me is showing signs of confusion from time to time.  Sigh. :)


Influenza
Redcloud54,

Your comment and the article you linked reminded me of a conversation I had long ago with an elderly lady.

It was concerning the 1918 pandemic(which she lived through) and the flu in general. We were discussing viruses and I made the comment that any virus could make you sick and it was impossible to really tell if you had the flu or something else.

Her response was... "You will know you have it when you get it". This particular comment really summed up the flu experience of the woman in your article. We always think of the flu being just like a bad cold. It is really scary to realize we are very misinformed!


[ Parent ]
conversation side + structured-info side
http://www.fluwiki.info/pmwiki...

How can we help each other?  That's another side to it.  Many will need help.

Part of the help stems from doing the right things, period.

But even once that's done, many will need help.

"Be kind to each other" does apply.

Thanks, Okieman, good thread!

You arm yourself to the teeth just in case.  You don't leave the gun near the baby's hand.


Anxiety
Anxiety over decisions made and to be made.

That's all I can say right now.


Irritation
You want to know the truth?  I'll be completely honest here.  One of my main emotions at the moment is irritation.

I'm irritated at some of TPTB because the decisions they are making and the things they say appear to make no sense to me or I see large gapping holes in their statements.

I get irritated by all of the qualifiers in the press releases and briefings.  The words are designed to spin the situation yet leave them enough wiggle room on down the road when people start asking ... "But you said ... ".  Comfort now with qualifiers for later.  Argh, makes me want to give dope slaps and wedgies.

I get irritated at friends and family that ought to see the commonsense of having a little preparation on hand just in case but who are so wound up in there other personal issues that they won't make a little time for an issue that is now staring them in the face.

I get irritated when people say something assinine like, "Bet you are just loving being able to say I told you so to us."  Of course not!  It makes me wonder if these people even know who I am and how much I care for them ... and makes me wonder if I ever knew them that they could say something, think something, like I would gloat that I turned out to be right and them wrong.

I get irritated at people that see what is going on and still refuse to consider the possibility that a bonifide threat exists and by their arrogance leads other people to join in as if the more people that pooh-pooh the idea the less valid it will become.  All for a joke.  All because they can.

I get irritated at people that use their status to misdirect and use slight of hand to manipulate people.

I get irritated at people who arrogantly lead by charisma and cannot handle that their vision isn't the one that is going to be dominant.

Yeah ... I think we all get emotional over this issue.  Right now though for me irritation is taking center stage.  Of course, tomorrow it could be something else.  But what's a little instability between friends?  ;-)

Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world, indeed it is the only thing that ever has. -- Margaret Mead


now that...
and especially this...

"Bet you are just loving being able to say I told you so to us."

I can relate to. No, it's not a good thing.


[ Parent ]
indeed
and the sad thing is, that they still don't do anything to help themselves, even having recognised that something of consequence is upon us.. I've friends whose cupboards would make old mother hubbard look profligate who say things like it is a bit worrying, then still go out for breakfast every day rather than use their toaster.. sure they are keeping the economy going, but I do wonder how they'll manage alone without any food and not knowing who their neighbours are come Autumn :-(

[ Parent ]
Bet you...
I so wanted to be able to go to my grave never seeing a significant pandemic; even told my kids they could bury my preps with me.

AS IF we would wish this upon one single person, much less the entire planet!! Dear God!!

It is better to look ahead and prepare than to look back and regret.


[ Parent ]
resigned
I think I am largely resigned to the idea that we are in a pandemic and that it still hasn't made a blind bit of notice to anyone around me.. my dad is in hospital recuperating from bypass surgery and while my Mum has said no visitors to the ward, or to home when he comes out, I rang her yesterday and she was in a coffee shop waiting to go back to see him!! So it seems like half - a-message is all that people are taking in from what I say... friends just roll their eyes when I mention it or send me messages saying that I missed a trick, as it is pigs not birds etc etc.. I've tried explaining that the danger isn't so much this particular flu, though of course that could change, but the impact it will have on health care for all ailments, or maybe their house will burn down because 70% of the local fire brigade are tucked up in bed with it.. but to no avail.. so now I just don't bother with it. They are not stupid so I can only assume that they see risk in a different way from me and I have to respect that decision.. I know the press etc. veer from it'll wipe us all out to it's only mild and back, but anyone with any interest can soon find places like this, so I no longer feel it is my duty to convince them otherwise.
I am trying to live life as normally as possible.. as yet I see little point in SIP, and I am beginning to think that will no longer form part of my plan for this pandemic.. while it would be possible, I am not sure it would be desirable, and part of me feels that I can hardly expect the health care workers etc to turn in, when I am hiding under my bed...my son is off to a summer school about 20 mins drive away tomorrow.. only 40 kids, seperate rooms and bathrooms.. not what I would choose, but I have explained the risks to him( he is nearly 16) and he has chosen to go.. in fact he said that he was more worried about Iran getting nuclear weapons so I guess we all do see risk in different things!
I think the problem with this pandemic has been , that so far, it has not been the H5N1 style nightmare we were thinking about , so that changing our lives to avoid it seems less urgent, and a step too far.. who knows, but I can only live so much for tomorrow.. as my OH says, I get in a car and I use electricity..

I empathize with that!
I am also slowly getting to a resigned state... I am still (obviously) active on fluwiki, but I have stepped back from warning friends and family who have indicated they are not interested... there are many risks out there, and they are handling all those risks in their own way, as am I... The incident w/your mom would be funny if not so serious! Reminds me of my 21 yr old niece, when I emailed her an article about the dangers of texting & driving, emailed back "I never text and drive! Really, only for big emergencies and only at stop lights!"... huh? But humans (me included) have amazing powers of denial... possibly we couldn't live sanely without them.

I keep getting bouts of fear, tho, as I see news articles about other problems (ex: the big fires in Spain)and mentally picture them compounded by flu! When I see the mobs of evacuated folk huddling together; when I see the firefighters and wonder how many disasters might increase due to a sick-halved emergency crew (or how many might get killed because of struggling to work while sick)... that's when the real effect of the pandemic gets to me...  


[ Parent ]
I empathize with that too!!!
I stopped pushing prepping with friends and family long ago, as the response I got was on the lines of eye rolling. I've even gotten to the point that I don't discuss why I've gotten "extra" food on hand with my children.

Recently my concerns have gone up, obviously, and I'm tempted to send on articles to people. But it seems pointless! Most people aren't taking this seriously and I'm to the point of saying..."OK, your choice, deal with it on your own!"  And then I feel guilty.....................


[ Parent ]
Well, at least they know where we are....
... when they want to ask questions! At this point, I hope they will consider me a flu resource (not for prepping - unfortunately I'm at least 40 minutes away from anyone, friend/family, that I know well).

Today, I noticed a bit of paranoia in myself, and I wonder how I can shake that off... or maybe it's not paranoid. I had to go to a picnic, and I noticed one woman coughing and sneezing - I avoided her. But after speaking for several minutes with another woman, she mentioned she wasn't feeling so hot, then told me all about her walking pneumonia, sinus infection and fever! I tried not to be rude as I stepped farther away. The issue is: I'm seeing everything as "flu" these days, and even tho I know enough to not mention that in public, I find myself not believing the diagnoses people tell me -- I am thinking, "It's flu and they dont' realize!"... so, I'm being a bit paranoid... need to figure out how to relax a bit... :-}


[ Parent ]
paranoia
I really don't think you are being paranoid. And I do not believe you are alone. When I am in a public place if I hear someone cough, sneeze or even snuff their nose I hold my breath and walk as quick as I can in the direction they DID NOT come from. Paranoid? Maybe. But if more people were like you and I maybe there would'nt be a pandemic.I even go shopping on days when I know the stores won't be busy and usually before 9am. And never between Friday and Monday.I have hand sanatizer in my car, purse and each bathroom. The first thing I do when I get home after being out is go immediatly and wash my hands. I even use sanatizing wipes on my steering wheel. The list of precautions I take go on and on. Again Paranoid? I think not

[ Parent ]
Emotional Response...
I have recently experienced the loss of my mother and my uncle who both died of misdiagnosed fast acting cancers. My mother was 16 days from hospital discharge to death.

These losses have clarified to me what is important and that is: This day. This hour. Being in the moment. Loving each other and connecting to each other kindly. We are all temporary.  

All the rest of it, money, lifestyle, things you have or desire are just nothing. Just illusion of this world.

That said: Preparation is good. You are caring for your family when you do that. Do not let fear run your life. Give yourself a limit on the amount of time you spend watching or searching for news. Limit you time on the computer, even on this website. Spend time with your family and friends. Today is all you have.    


how to describe my feelings?
I came back to this diary several times and wanted to post something but found that I really didn't know how I felt.  After a couple of days, it's beginning to dawn on me.  But first I want to say that everyone is different and my life has been extraordinarily different from most people that I've met, so what I feel is probably an outlier.  And for newbies and others, here's a bit of background.  I'm originally from Hong Kong, grew up, worked, had a family there.  My husband still works there.  My kids started going to school in England.  Then my oldest daughter became ill, and I quit work and moved to the UK.  After a couple of years, she got leukemia, and, after a very intense 4 months when I spent 24/7 with her at various hospitals, she died from ARDS secondary to pneumonia during a stem cell transplant.  She was 16.  That was 10 years ago.

Now I have a husband in HK, my kids have graduated from college, one is working in London and one in NYC, while I live in the country, in the UK.  So we are an atypical family, and, in the course of preparing for H5N1, the logistics of exactly what we would do when, was complicated to say the least.  

With all that in mind, I realized that this current pandemic, in comparison, throws out relatively minor challenges for me and mine.  That's the realization, that everything is relative.

Secondly, I think losing a child changes you permanently, but that change is different for different people.  I think when your endurance (physical and emotional) is challenged to the limit, people become more of who they were, deep inside.  Some people say, their priorities change.  I think yes, priorities change but only in so far as things that were important to you before, that you keep putting off cos 'life' getting in the way, suddenly take on another level of meaning, such that you are no longer willing to allow yourself to keep postponing what is important to you.

I still don't know how I feel.  I don't feel fearful.  For a few weeks when this started, I felt stressed cos there were so many unknowns and so many decisions that needed to be made.  Now, the unknowns are still many, but most of the decisions are either made, or we have accepted the uncertainties and feel comfortable living with it and playing by ear.

When I ask myself how I REALLY feel, I find myself oddly at peace, as far as my family is concerned (which is another reason why I didn't post for a few days, cos that realization was odd in itself!).  Yes, the risks are there, but they are relatively low (as I said, everything is relative and dependent on what you have gone through) and probably manageable.  

But the other question that keeps popping up, is why am I doing all this?  Researching, writing, traveling, having meetings, making the case (for whatever I happen to be making a case for), fighting vaccine companies.  Yes, I can see the value, but why keep doing it?  Why should I do it?  It isn't my job, and there's so much to do and I can't do everything.  

Which was where the realization about the bereavement came in.  That after a major life-changing event, you (or at least I, and I konw my DH feels the same) feel that life, living a few score years, is itself meaningless except where you can create meaning out of it.  I can't explain why wanting to make a difference on this issue (as opposed to so many other issues that I could put my mind to) is important.  I guess there's a part of me that, knowing the pain of losing a child, cannot stand the scenarios that get conjured up whenever I crunch the numbers, and it's as if, knowing what it feels like, I'm unable to switch that off, and each child, each family, represented in those numbers somehow become personal for me, except multiplied by those numbers...

There is a third part, to this realization.  And it is that the feelings described in that last sentence of the last paragraph, are so intense that while they compel me to do what I do, I also have to keep them in check in order to do what I do.  I discover that I have to go 'clinical' (I find some of that in reading stuff that I've written), step away from those feelings, to be dispassionate, so as to try and accomplish something that will make some difference, while all the time it's those feelings that drive what I do.  I also discover that it's hard for me to express empathy for those of you experiencing all your own emotions, not because I don't feel it, but because at some level I can't afford to feel it.  That maybe there is some floodgate that if I were to let it open a crack, then I wouldn't be able to keep going, and would have to just go home and curl up and nurse myself back to some semblance of resilience again.

Is that healthy?  Is that a good way to go?  I'm not sure.  I'm still processing it.  



All 'safety concerns' are hypothetical.  If not, they'd be called side effects...


SusanC
I guess there's a part of me that, knowing the pain of losing a child, cannot stand the scenarios that get conjured up whenever I crunch the numbers, and it's as if, knowing what it feels like, I'm unable to switch that off, and each child, each family, represented in those numbers somehow become personal for me, except multiplied by those numbers...

I've known this about you for a long time now.  :-)  

So, thank you - I say that deeply, personally and on behalf of many whose lives your work has touched and will touch.


[ Parent ]
Agreed, Inky
Susan, I have been working with you for two years, on our ReadyMoms Alliance project/s, and we have had many long and sometimes emotional conversations. Some in person, some not.

I know a piece of your heart and it struggles with the issues you mentioned often. We are alike in that we are driven to do the best that we can, often times putting ourselves and our families in the background because of that drive. You have one reason and I have another for doing this, but the drive is still as intense for each of us. I wish others could meet you, like Inky and I have.

We have made a good time with the others at RMA and hopefully, the fruit of that will be the chance for other parents to hold their child when this pandemic is over because they learned a little something from the work that we've been doing ... that we've been driven to do ... like so many others in so many capacities on the flu forums.

The processing part is going to be a long process, I think. -k

www.EmergencyHomePreparation.org -- A 'card-catalog' style of prepping information.   -


[ Parent ]
intense is the word
you and me both..



All 'safety concerns' are hypothetical.  If not, they'd be called side effects...


[ Parent ]
I feel ...
Tired to the bone.  Needing to shift gears and do something else.  Focus on something entirely different from this hard stuff.

Realising how flublogia is really a small place in the whole wide world.

Concerned about Autumn, vaccines and the developing world.  And how people will deal with their adjustment reactions and day-to-day activities, and how can I help with that.

Other than that, strangely peaceful, and hoping someone else will take care of the next pandemic.  Please! ;-)  Not that anyone here has taken care of the whole lot, of course. :-D

I guess I/we need some rest, if and when we can get it, before the remaining 99% or whatever.

You arm yourself to the teeth just in case.  You don't leave the gun near the baby's hand.


Of "tired."
It's funny - these days sometimes I feel tired just from the weight of what will be and not from doing or going without sleep.  You, though, have justification for feeling tired. Do get rest when you can.

When the time comes, there will be people who will take care of each other and things that must be done.


[ Parent ]
Trying to find balance
I think we've all gone thru the ups and downs of flu prep. The hurry up and wait problem.  I am fairly calm because I am knowledgeable enough to be ready in very short order.  

I share the frustration of educating people only to be ridiculed.  While getting my hair cut today, I mentioned that I was busy getting my garden planted a little early so we would actually have vegetables to eat should our supply chain be compromised due to the pandemic.  I did NOT start with telling her what SHE needed to do.  Little by little, she began to ask more questions, to which I supplied answers.  It wasn't long before she said "I don't think I want to know".  I then asked if she had any children, to which she replied a 21 month old baby.  I encouraged her to avoid day care if at all possible.  It was only then that I sensed a sudden realization on her part that perhaps she SHOULD learn more.  So I gave her the FW website and encouraged her to simply start reading.  And to let the information there guide her decisions...one way or the other.  

We can only plant seeds, just like in my garden.  I hope to have fresh vegetables by late November (I'm in south Florida).  If I can get others to do the same, great.  If not, at least I know I can care for my own family...which gives me a sense of peace.

Life is short!


"We can only plant seeds"
i like that. It's so true.

[ Parent ]
"We can't pull a plant to make it grow faster"
(I like that one too.)

((Not that I feel less urgency or anything. LOL))

You arm yourself to the teeth just in case.  You don't leave the gun near the baby's hand.


[ Parent ]
about warning people
something else came to mind yesterday, while talking to a friend.  I think part of my focus now lies in creating online resources, creating the knowledge base, like on this forum, so that when people are ready and want information, we are ready to help them.

I always thought, and my/our experiences also showed, that it's very hard to convince someone of a threat that is so unusual that it happens only once in a generation, and yet is so 'common' cos it's 'just flu'.  What most people cannot wrap their heads around, is that a pandemic with 0.3% CFR and 30% AR means that the chance of a specific individual dying from it is < 1 in 1,000, and yet such a pandemic has very serious implications for their community and therefore for themselves as well.  It's the juxtaposition of a seemingly low personal risk vs a much more serious collective risk, that people cannot grasp sufficiently to take action.  I think many of them get it, at a intellectual level, but not viscerally.  Not really.

But, sooner or later, they will get it.  And there will be a massive need for information.  We should get ourselves ready for that, if we want to help people.  Just my 2 cents.

Since this thread is about emotional response, I just want to add that I wrote this BECAUSE the ability to DO something to make a difference seems to have a calming, healing effect on me, which may be the opposite side of the same coin, of those who feel frustrated cos no one will listen.  



All 'safety concerns' are hypothetical.  If not, they'd be called side effects...


Wise words as always :-)
I think many of them get it, at a intellectual level, but not viscerally.  Not really.

Until they or their loved ones catch the flu and then for a short while they want to know everything there is about flu, they worry about their job, their elderly parent, how they will mamage if their kid's off school and they want to get treated NOW! If people could just hold on to that feeling a bit longer and ask themselves 'what if this virus had been worse?'

This applies to many of the professionals who are involved in pandemic planning too.


[ Parent ]
Perhaps motivation, not fear
SusanC: I discover that I have to go 'clinical' (I find some of that in reading stuff that I've written), step away from those feelings, to be dispassionate, so as to try and accomplish something that will make some difference, while all the time it's those feelings that drive what I do.  I also discover that it's hard for me to express empathy for those of you experiencing all your own emotions, not because I don't feel it, but because at some level I can't afford to feel it.

Yes.  I have never felt 'fear' about H5N1 or H1N1. This allows timely and effective response, in large part thanks to the selfless work by so many.  The work is important, I believe, because of the sheer magnitude of the threat.  And this is multiplied by potential cross-impacts on other complex systems, from the economy to healthcare to food to transportation.   Without a degree of dispassionate-ness, I think you invite paralysis simply because it would be so overwhelming.  So you work the problems at best you can, with what time you have, because it will make a difference.  All the while knowing the cost.  


we work that way, IdahoEM
but it's a good reminder that not everyone does.

[ Parent ]
also that those who don't
need to understand those who do, and vice versa.



All 'safety concerns' are hypothetical.  If not, they'd be called side effects...


[ Parent ]
watch what we do, now what we feel? LOL


You arm yourself to the teeth just in case.  You don't leave the gun near the baby's hand.

[ Parent ]
but emotions are also important
which is why this thread is good.  Some of us need to express, share, and process their emotions more than others.  



All 'safety concerns' are hypothetical.  If not, they'd be called side effects...


[ Parent ]
I deeply respect that,
and well, I follow this thread even tho' I'm not exactly the expressive kind.

Watch what I do. ;-)

(I think I speak for others, tho' by definition I don't know for whom.)

You arm yourself to the teeth just in case.  You don't leave the gun near the baby's hand.


[ Parent ]
If Others Can See (Feel) It, It Must Really Be There
Some need to share their emotions.

Some also need to see that their emotions are also felt by others.

It's like having to ask someone, "did you see that?" or "did you hear what I just heard?".  

When something (like a pandemic) comes along that is this far out of the ordinary or commonplace, we sometimes need to verify that both our perceptions and our reactions are shared by others to confirm that the threat actually exists somewhere outside our own heads and that our response is both natural and not overboard.

This thread also shows us that whatever we are feeling today, while we all have to walk our own path, we share that path with others and here at FW we can learn from and support each other along the way.

ITW(Joel J)
Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear - not absence of fear.
- Mark Twain
 


[ Parent ]
external validation
I recall the first time I "validated" my concern.  It was when I saw the word "pandemic", black on white, on a newspaper's first page.

I've had many other moments since then.

It's a bit like what people in sci-fi stories are supposed to feel when they feel transported to the other end of the galaxy.

A kind of very private "uh-oh" feeling.

Plus there's the more "chronic" feeling of resisting acceptance of current status quo.  A tension between the envisioned bad future and a better, also possible, one.

You arm yourself to the teeth just in case.  You don't leave the gun near the baby's hand.


[ Parent ]
Thanks for support when I spoke of my fear
The fear comes in waves and I was drowning that day. Thanks for not writing me off as a nut or chastising me for my very emotional comment. Most of the time I keep it under control. It is just good to know that others understand how I feel. I took a brief flu-wiki vacation and I am refreshed and back to the news.
Thanks to all for a place to let it out without being told that I am crazy when I freak out.
 

I had to take a break too.
I was on this site reading updates constantly, and was getting pretty freaked out.  Fortunately (?!) a couple of weeks ago I had a bad flare-up of carpal tunnel, so was forced to take a break from my computer.  

What a relief it was to be away from the news (aka feeling of impdending doom) for awhile.   Like you, I am refreshed.  

I go back to my job in a large drugstore today (I've been off a couple of months with a broken ankle). Before all I was feeling was fear about the exposure to sick customers, now I'm feeling ready to educate management, staff and customers about what can be done.  


[ Parent ]
Infrequent visitor
I used to come to the site daily. The old site that is. Back when I lived in California a little over three years ago. Much has changed since then. We have moved twice. First halfway across the country to east Texas then to north central Oklahoma just after the 2007 ice storm. We went through all of our food preps in Texas. We had to, we were just that broke. That and a job that had me on call 24/6 kept me away from fluwiki for the most part. In a way it was good. I had so much to worry about that not focusing so much on the possibility of such a huge threat to my family probably helped get me through that time. Because I did worry more when I was here everyday and that stressing wasn't good for me. But the not following what was going on and not prepping due to literally no extra money could have created a worse problem. That time also served to teach me just how much of some foods our family will go through in a given time frame.
Now I am beginning to follow things here a little more. Often I just lurk and read rather than comment. Sort of like being a good listener. In part it is because of because of H1N1, I want to know more of what is going on. I need to but I am keeping my visits fewer to keep my stress level down. I feel the need to keep up on things because of where I live and work. Moving to Oklahoma after that ice storm taught me I need to prepare for winters here because I never had to deal with that kind of extreme growing up in California. The tornados are another good reason to prep. Also where I work I am in close quarters with others so social distancing is difficult so I have to be concerned. I have learned a great deal from fluwiki and that is why I keep returning even if it is less frequently than before. I think I have most of Kathy in Florida's recipes. She could write a cookbook.
Now we also have more resources which is another reason I come to fluwiki. More income means I can prep more. I am trying to make my dollars count because though we have more, our prepping funds are still limited. Last fall I began stocking up for the winter expecting a lot of cold and ice that didn't happen. I still have staples I bought last fall. That has again taught me how much of some things to buy. I am working on my food preps, adding medical supplies, and adding other supplies like more sheets, blankets and towels that will help if one or more of us gets sick. I buy 1-2 large boxes of N95 masks a month. I am also working on things like medical and life insurance and having our bills and expenses where I want them to be. Little things like how my bills are paid and having an extra garbage toter all fit into my prepping. We are looking at what we need to do to keep our house warmer this winter. It is an old house and even with central heat we cannot do too much to keep warm. So while I may not have a generator working yet but I feel better about our ability to get through the winter and another round of H1N1 coming through this area than I once did. We are already signed up for our annual flu shots at work which may not protect us from H1N1 but are still a good idea. I was grateful the company seems to be thinking ahead much more than they did last year. I may not be as prepared as some of the full timers here but I am better prepared than I was three years ago. For me it's not about the expensive extras but the basics, food, shelter, warmth, water & power and basic meds. I learned a lot of that from this site. The teaching, sharing and informing of each other done on this site shows me the world is a pretty decent place.

"When the last individual of a race of living things breathes no more, another heaven and another earth must pass before such a one can be again."

- William Beebe, 1906



POPPY!!!!!
How are you, my friend? Long time no see! I was worried about you and your family. Glad to see you're back and back on track!!
You know I'm in Virginia now? Left FresNo in 2006...

[ Parent ]
Frustrated and feeling tense
Someone (I think it was FluMom) commented on another thread about shopping late at night and I thought it was a great idea. Regardless, I had to run to the store so I went last night armed with my Clorox wipees and hand santizers making sure I took all the precautionary measures. Like some of the above posters I was aware of every cough and sneeze and sniffle in the store. I avoided folks. I, too, am feeling a bit paranoid! LOL

Thinking I'd done a fairly good job of being aware of everything I was touching, I went to check out and the check out girl looked horrible. I asked her if she was okay. She told me she had the flu and had a fever. I then watched as she touched every damn thing that went from my basket into a bag and eventually went into my home.

Angry, frustrated, defeated, afraid...I dunno...a whole melange of feelings.

I KNOW she doesn't get paid for when she's sick and has to take off. I feel for her. It's a loose/loose situation and it does no good to get irritated but I was, none the less. Of course, I didn't show it to her. But still. I'm beginning to think this thing just isn't avoidable. There's a feeling of "when" not "if" so I shouldn't alter anything...just get it over with and whatever happens happens.

Rant over, carry on! ;)

 



"History never looks like history when you are living through it." ~John W. Gardner


Avoiding flu
I dont' think anything is completely avoidable.  You do what you can and try to resist the urge to ask the check-out person to treat their hands with hand sanitizer before they check you out.  

I have a little retail job in town where I work one shift (4 hours) a week.  I do it just for the discount and to play with clothes.  The first week I started a customer covered her mouth and nose with her hand during a big juicy sneeze (as we were all taught to do in grade school).  She then reached into her bag (using that same hand), took out her cash, counted it and then handed it to me.  

It was then that I began to channel the spirit of my Aunts and keep a tissue or two tucked in my sleeve and a small bottle of hand santizer in my bra.  My only other option is to quit.  I can see altering my life for H1N1, but I just can't see stopping living my life.  Now.. if it were H5N1... that's a different story altogether!  


[ Parent ]
If had been the cashier who had just sneezed in her hand,
I think I would be justified in asking her to sanitize her hands before handling my purchases.  If she isn't sneezing, there's probably no point in asking.  She'll be exhaling all the while, anyway. :-(

"The truth does not change according to our ability to stomach it."  Flannery O'Connor

[ Parent ]
Nothing is completely avoidable, true...
but I think one can do a lot. Though retired, I also had a part-time retail job (in a bookstore), held for the fun of it and for the book discount. When H1N1 first appeared last spring I got real twitchy about working with the public, but decided it was still OK, though I got in the habit of using hand sanitizer after each customer. But two weeks ago, when large numbers of infections appeared in my town, and H1N1 was confirmed, I quit. Just not worth the risk. Even as "mild" as it is, I don't want to catch it. Remember that a fair number of people get very sick indeed, some die. And I keep thinking that it could turn more virulent, and with it already established amongst us and next to nobody taking care, what warning will we have before people start dying?  

[ Parent ]
Tess, that was so generous of you to not make the cashier feel worse!
But, yikes, you tried so hard to be careful.  What else can you do?  Maybe ring up your own groceries?  All stores don't have self-checkout options, though.  

That lack of sick leave is a huge problem.  If there's a value in not spreading the virus, is there any way to compensate the workers and help the small businesses who may not have substitute workers?  Who should pay for it?

The other part of this problem is that if sick employees aren't helped to stay home, it's irresponsible to let high-risk individuals come in contact with them, but no one is warning them.  There's no general closing of schools or other crowded places.  Life is normal, mostly, and people don't know they should be careful with others (and if they're sick, they're feeling too miserable to care, anyway).  Many of those at risk don't even know they're supposed to avoid this flu, do they?  

"The truth does not change according to our ability to stomach it."  Flannery O'Connor


[ Parent ]
more angry at myself
for not already having the items at home so I wasn't placed in this position. But then, I decided early on not to prepare for a SIP longer than 2-3 weeks and that was in case one of the three of us were sick and can't get out for an extended period.

I have worked with the public most of my life in cosmetology specialty fields and was always self-employed. You're so right Jane, about the sick leave problem. If i didn't work, rent didn't get paid, bills on the business etc. It's different now that I'm older, established, etc. But I used to be amazed at how many people would come for an appt. and say they were off work because they were sick but didn't give a thought to getting a manicure, facial, etc. I got just about everything that came down the pike each fall.

My lease just came up for renewal and, in light of everything in the world of flu and, at the time, with no guidance from our State Board, I decided to retire. Why expose myself unduly?

I know we're not political here but no one should have to worry about losing their job because they're out with flu for a week or 10 days. They get to stay home, heal and help keep the public safe. Help to stay home is really a must in during a pandemic, IMHO.



 



"History never looks like history when you are living through it." ~John W. Gardner


[ Parent ]
I feel for her too . . .
But I don't think people who are ill should go to work - by and large, it's not a matter of their children starving if they don't, it's much more likely to be a matter of whether they pay their cable TV bill or their cell phone bill . . .

Regardless, I can't get over the feeling that a sick employee in a grocery store is putting my life at risk so they can draw a paycheck, and it makes me furious and makes me feel devalued as a human being . . . life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness and all that.  You can toss the liberty and happiness during pandemic, but I still think I have a right to life.  You can't help it if you go to work before you realize you're infected with a contagious disease, but if you are aware you have the flu, and a fever, then as far as I'm concerned you don't have the right to go to work and infect other people.

That's just me, I know - everyone else will think it's sweet and kind not to make the poor cashier feel even worse than she does.  Me - I want to stay alive, and people who knowingly put that at risk aren't likely to be on the receiving end of my generosity.


[ Parent ]
I'm with you, Clawdia
I've had it up to here with people who "bravely" carry on whilst sick, spreading infection all the while. The are times when the only decent thing to do is isolate yourself from the rest of humanity for the duration. I see no reason to be polite (being kind, if you will) to people who are risking my health, however they justify it to themselves.

[ Parent ]
*Sick leave policies can be very tough*
It may have been more than losing a few days pay for her. She might have lost her job if she didn't come in to work. And with the economy as it is now, it would be very hard to find another.  I don't know if it would help to talk to the manager of the store.

[ Parent ]
New jobs easier to find than new lives
Worst case scenario - she loses her job?

That's not the worst case scenario in my mind.  To me, the worst case scenario is that she had H1N1 and infected multiple people, who then went on to infect multiple other people, including perhaps some pregnant women and some children.

Things are not as simple as some people seem to think - I do know it is easier to replace a job than it is to resurrect the dead, or to compensate someone who spends days or weeks or months in an ICU - or loses her lower limbs such as the poor girl in Australia.  

I don't know either if it would help to speak to store managers when we encounter such a situation - I think I might feel compelled to do something, even if my first instinct was to get away from there as quickly as I could.
There's always the telephone to use once I got safely home.

For that matter, it wouldn't be the first time I'd walked away from an entire grocery order on a counter because it was in my best interests to do so - I once heard a cashier tell a bagger that she was going to have to leave early because she thought she had a "stomach flu" (one of those phrases I hate because there is no such thing), and I apologized as I explained that for personal reasons it had become necessary for me to leave the store immediately.  I didn't walk away - I pretty much ran - and that wasn't for a potentially fatal disease, "just" for a few days of total misery had I picked up what I suspected was a norovirus.

Self preservation is a pretty strong instinct, and I think in this day and age we need to let that instinct have its way with our behavior.


[ Parent ]
I guess
I am having an emotional response over how badly pandemic information dissemination has been handled.  I feel like we have been manipulated and treated as a child.  I never respond well to this type of treatment.

My immediate family dealt with swine flu back in July.  We came through it fairly well.  So it is not due to any personal reasons for which I get upset.  It is when I read headline after headline in the daily news diary about children and young people dying that I have a sense of anger.  I get angry with statements from governmental officials and experts which I know are manipulative and not straight forward.  I get angry over the flip-flopping of messages, especially when I think they knew the truth to begin with, but chose to modify it.  I believe most of the general public is not angry but rather confused.  I also believe that the next step, from confusion to anger, is not a long one.  So, now I am somewhat anxious about how this is all going to play out, especially if the antivirals and antibiotics run out.  I don't know whether they are close to that point or not.  I reckon I'm not going to be told if they are.  Some days I don't read the daily news diary very closely.  I choose not to.  It does no good.  I look for changes which may portend something worse developing, but I do not read down too deep.  It hurts too much...

I have been following flu news for several years now.  Primarily to try to identify when H5N1 turns pandemic.  The present H1N1 pandemic has taught me at least one thing: Keep watching  and be prepared, because you are not going to be told if a H5N1 pandemic arises.  Nor will you be told the potential severity.  The number one goal will be to keep the masses passive.  snark"Do not panic!!!"snark  I knew that was likely the case before, but having seen it played out in reality over the past few months brings it home.  But, maybe from this our government (elected and bureaucratic) will learn what they have done wrong and what could be done better.  I hope so, but I'm not going to count on it.  I will keep paying attention for myself.  I will not rely on someone else to tell me if bad things are coming our way.  I see it as my duty to pay attention.  I just wish others saw it as their duty to tell me the unvarnished truth.  If you can't tell me the truth, then don't say anything.  A little bit of truth goes a long ways...and a little bit of untruth goes just as far...in the opposite direction.  


I hate when the word 'panic' even appears
since there isn't any except among editors of newspapers.

"I get angry with statements from governmental officials and experts which I know are manipulative and not straight forward. "

Can you be more specific? Is it local or national, since the twice weekly national stuff from CDC seems straight forward, if dry?


[ Parent ]
Ok
Vice President Biden and his frank statements concerning subways and enclosed spaces.  Then the withdrawal/clarification.  Do you think anyone believed the clarification?
http://www.reuters.com/article...

After seeing what happened in Mexico City when they basically shut down the whole city, I think there was a push for calling this virus "mild".  What does the common man on the street think when he hears that?
http://www.reuters.com/article...

All of the emphasis on hand washing, with CDC obviously in approval.  If you just wash your hands and not touch your eyes, nose or mouth, and eat well and get plenty of sleep then you should have nothing to worry about...yadda, yadda...
http://www.newsweek.com/id/215...

And this podcast below which is posted here:
http://www.cdc.gov/h1n1flu/sch...
All You Have To Do Is Wash Your Hands
http://www2c.cdc.gov/podcasts/...
I believe in hand washing by the way, but they pushed it like it was the one thing which would protect you.

Going on the mild meme, they chose to go ahead with school opening at the normal time.  At the CDC site posted above concerning guidance to schools, they tell schools its up to them to decide whether to close or not.  But as we all here know, they recommended that school to continue through it all.  What about the high risk children and adults?  Was there some type of push to make sure these folks knew to be extra careful?  Yeah, it's on the CDC website, but was there any type of information dissemination as public service messages aimed at these folks around the time school was starting?  I don't remember any.  Maybe now, but not until it was already spreading and doing its damage.  I'm convinced they knew by the beginning of August who was in the high risks groups, and many were in school or had school age children.

Vaccine.  Don't worry be happy, we'll have a vaccine for you before flu season...  How did that turn out?  And, the question: "If it's mild, why do I need to be vaccinated?" seems to beg to be answered.  So...now the message about how its not mild after all and is killing children daily.  Don't worry, do worry...which is it?  

They say the virus itself has not changed since April.  They had from May to August to gather data.  It is not that hard to extrapolate the numbers.  Most of us here knew exactly what was about to happen when school opened.  If we knew, they knew (CDC, and thus the government).  The economic cost was too high to delay schools from opening a month or two.  Simple as that, in my opinion.   So...down play the risks and call it "mild".  Open schools and tell them to continue through the outbreak.  Tell everyone that the vaccine was coming.  Then tell them that this virus is more severe than we thought (yeah right, like they didn't know before now) and spook folks into lining up for the vaccine.  But, ironies of ironies, there is a hitch in the vaccine manufacturing and delivery, about the time the pandemic is starting to peak.

Did I miss something?  Folks, add to my post if I did.

Sorry Dem, this comment turned into a rant...

Maybe all of this is just how it turned out, without any type of purposeful information manipulation.  But I always go back to Biden and his comments and the "clarification".  That said it all...


[ Parent ]
Biden's comments
As far as I can tell, what Joe Biden said was the last honest comment to come from the federal government; at least, until the President put the flu in the same disaster category as a landfalling hurricane.

Perhaps those who've never sat thru a hurricane or endured the aftermath of one might fail to see the seriousness of his statement, but those of us who have spent time in domr coastal areas know that kind of disaster, and understand the implications of the statement.

It really bothers me that as recently as yesterday I heard someone on MSM once again say that this is, if anything, a milder illness than "seasonal flu", and that most people do not need treatment.  Until we can tell in advance who will develop the more serious form of this disease and end up needing a vent or even ECMO, I think the mantra should be to treat those who are sick enough to present requesting treatment.  Otherwise, some people who need treatment are going to suffer without it, and suffer in a major way.


[ Parent ]
Very good points
I have not been happy with the "mild but do some extraordinary things like get your shot" message (my response has always been "mild pandemic is an oxymoron") and that muddled things. I have also been unhappy with "we will have vaccine" . Don't make promises you can't keep. We will have vaccine and plenty of it but not in time for this peak. People can deal with that if they are told.

OTOH, the updates have been good. I know the general public is more and more interested via the Daily Kos blog, and i wonder if it's overall perceived as badly as you paint in a Big Picture way. All the points you made are valid even if the public is not as get harsh as you said, more confused than angry)


[ Parent ]
I realize
I am much more informed than the common man on the street, and thus probably more critical because I can see the mistakes.  One would probably be right to consider it a form of "armchair quarterbacking".  It must be very very hard to be the one making these decisions which affects millions of people.  But some of these mistakes are appallingly simple.  The one concerning vaccine availability, or potential lack of, as you mention above is one.

I think that as this pandemic is becoming more serious, the fluff and guff of information shaping is falling away.  It must, or we have very bad things in store for us as a nation.  As people have family members get sick, or coworkers get sick...etc then this issue concerning pandemic information and what actions are taking place is/will come into sharp focus for many many people, rich or poor.  Many will choose to no longer be confused, because their loved ones are being affected, and are/will go seeking information to straighten out their confusion.  If the deaths and serious complications increase then we are going to see a ground swell of outrage.  There is probably a tipping point on this.  If the numbers stay below a certain level then there will not be sufficient heat to cause ignition.  But, if there is, then there will be more than the pandemic to be concerned about.  The availability of information at the hands of the common man in the form of the internet is the difference from 1918 and the other pandemics of the 20th century.  I don't think it will come to that point with this particular virus, but it could.  

Hard numbers and cold truth is what is needed now.  It was what was needed from the beginning.  But, in my opinion, that was not the route chosen.  There better be a correction concerning this because it is a pandemic and everyone is going to be affected in one way or another in a very short period of time.  If the deaths mount up and the people feel (rightly or wrongly) that they have not, are not, being told the truth...well...not good.  Somehow, this needs to be addressed.  


[ Parent ]
Personally I have more issue
With pandemic deniers in and out of govt than I do with those who try.

[ Parent ]
No use for them
I don't have any use for the deniers.  They've got an axe to grind and are using the pandemic issue as demagoguery.

Anything other than the facts is wrong.

It shouldn't be denied.  It shouldn't be downplayed.  It shouldn't be hyped.

There is danger in anything but the truth.  

The truth sets one free to face whatever comes.


[ Parent ]
Good
I believe that was a very good action.  We as a nation must face up to it and deal with it head on as the emergency it is.

[ Parent ]
The comments to this story
is without doubt the biggest collection of ignorance I've seen lately -

If that's an example of what the American public really thinks of this pandemic, we're in for more of a world of hurt than even I had imagined.

Briefly, this is the story I alluded to when I said the President had declared the pandemic to be a state of emergency akin to that caused by a landfalling hurricane.


[ Parent ]
Where
What comments are you referring to Clawdia?  Just so I can go read.

[ Parent ]
Comments
At the end of the story at the link that Dem posted above.

[ Parent ]
Comments gone . . .
Well, they were there when I followed the link earier - looks like the story was recently updated, and now I see no comments.  

[ Parent ]
Yeah
I had gone and looked and didn't find any.  That's why I asked where.  Thanks for checking and answering my question.

[ Parent ]
comments here:
http://ca.news.yahoo.com/ad/re...

There are 35 comments, and the most recent comment is at the top.

"The truth does not change according to our ability to stomach it."  Flannery O'Connor


[ Parent ]
Still can't read them
Maybe you have to be signed on with them or something.  Oh well, I can imagine the range of the comments.  I've visited some financial forums today and it has been a topic of discussion on them.  Lots of serious and silly speculation.

[ Parent ]
Could be; the site greeted me by name!
Yuck.  I have Yahoo mail, and I'm logged on.  Sheesh, no privacy!  Maybe you should be glad you can't read them?

"The truth does not change according to our ability to stomach it."  Flannery O'Connor

[ Parent ]
I think you're right
I believe most of the general public is not angry but rather confused.

[ Parent ]
Very Angry!
I am angry that people did not get Flu Shots in the U.K. and in Canada.  Many of the people who died would maybe have lived.  Hope people in the U.S. got their shots!

Got that off my chest!


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