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Covid Opened a Whole New World

In the olden days, pre-2020, the only thing stopping us from leaving our homes to socialize was the restrictions on our lungs. My goal was to leave my house three times a week.

It took lots of planning along with a husband that was patient, kind, and supportive enough to help me make it successfully happen.

Sheltering in place taught me a lot

When Covid hit, everything closed up, and we began to shelter in place. Our new slogan was “14 days to flatten the curve.”

You didn’t have to tell us twice. Those with compromised lungs already know the dangers, and we sheltered willingly.

For most of us, it was a lonely time as we were abruptly cut off from family and friends. I missed those that came to me regularly because they were my social life. For the first time, it would be just my husband and me.

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Surprisingly, the isolation opened my world up. In a quest to stay in touch with the outside world and keep loneliness and depression at arm's length, it was necessary to force my brain to learn new technology.

I eagerly joined all things virtual, as long as they were free, and kept myself busy. I took lots of courses and used the opportunity to meet people on platforms like Zoom and Microsoft Teams.

Making friends in the pandemic

I found some people that were as interested as I was in learning, and we practiced with each other. It worked well, and friendships were made now that we could see each other face to face. It is, in fact, like sitting at my kitchen table, having tea with the neighbors.

There are free versions as well as paid versions of most platforms, and they are popping up everywhere.  There are no long-distance charges for using these platforms, and with a strong WiFi connection, you are off to the races.

Looking forward to leaving my house

For me, it was all fun and games. My days were busy, as I was up to my neck in learning. Some of us were secretly elated that we were no longer pressured to leave our homes. Life became quieter as we ordered food and clothes, attended respiratory rehab, and had doctor visits using this new technology on our computers. 

However, as the third year of lockdown crept up, it made me feel like I was on house arrest for a crime I didn’t commit.

I am one that was secretly glad that I didn’t have to push myself to leave the house. Now, I sit on two government boards advocating for those with COPD and chronic illness.

I write articles, run a support group, and socialize exclusively through virtual platforms.

Still, I am looking forward to the coming warmer weather to be a little more active and leave my cocoon. But, I strongly feel that for those of us with COPD and chronic illness, having virtual platforms is a blessing and the way of the future.

Editor’s Note: We are extremely saddened to say that on January 7th, 2024, Barbara Moore passed away. Barbara’s advocacy efforts and writing continue to reach many. She will be deeply missed.

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

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