Today is my 6th day of voluntary self-isolation. I am not sick, have no symptoms of any kind and to my knowledge, I have not been exposed to Covid-19. I’m staying home because it seems like the right thing to do, and because as a person of relative privilege, I can.
Technically I am in the high-risk category due to being over 65 (just barely). Importantly, I have a history of respiratory issues. My birth father, who was a heavy smoker, died from complications relating to emphysema before he reached the age of 60. Every few years I contract chronic bronchitis, walking pneumonia or other similar type lung ailments.
Further complicating my situation and decision-making is the fact that my wife Claudette works in Lihue as a customer services agent for United Airlines. She is in contact daily with hundreds of travelers from throughout the world traveling to and from Kauai.
So while I am a high-risk potential victim of Covid-19, Claudette is a high-risk potential transmitter.
No, my self-isolation does not include staying away from my wife. However, because of the dual high-risk nature of our situation, it makes sense for me to stay home.
I made a trip to the bank yesterday stopping briefly at the 7-11 to buy a small container of half and half, consciously practicing appropriate social distancing the entire time. Beyond that I’ve remained at home, on the computer mostly, catching up on correspondence while compulsively watching the news and monitoring social media.
I am missing my 3-year-old grandson Rixon, terribly. He lives only a short distance away but I am torn as to whether the “social distancing” thing and the “dual high risk” situation mean that the responsible thing for me to do is also stay away from him, my son Dylan and daughter-in-law Leeona.
My daughter Kelli-Rose, her husband Justin and granddaughter Isabella, are presently in Japan where they await transfer to New Jersey. That separation is unavoidable and so easier to accept. But consciously choosing not to visit and hug little Rixon, is a tough pill to swallow (no pun intended).
A few days ago, my self-isolation resolve was at its breaking point and I made a decision to drive to Koloa for a visit, and yes, a likely hug. But the rains descended upon our island and driving through the storm did not make sense.
The question still plagues me though (still yet another unintended pun). Is the fear, the reality, and the risk actually so significant that I must stay away from those I love? gh
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