April 2, 2020 Keeping Your Perspective and Staying Calm

At dinner last night I asked my 23-year-old grandson to really pay attention to what is happening around the world right now during this COVID-19 Pandemic.  50 years from now when he is my husband’s age, he will be able to divide his life into B.C. (Before Coronavirus) and after. I asked him to think about what culture, behaviors, politics, and economics were changed permanently due to this disease. As a retired microbiologist I wish I could be here in fifty years to read the scientific journals on what really happened, what worked, what did not, and its long-term impact on society.

But for today I want to stay focused on risk assessment. Most of you know I ride a bike every day, and every day I wear a helmet. In 1997 I had a severe bicycle accident (on a bike path) and my helmet saved my life. I also drive a car, and every time I get into my car, I secure my seatbelt. In a snowstorm in 1976 I skidded off the highway in the mountains of Colorado and my car became airborne. I survived because of my seatbelt. When I sail I wear a lifejacket. In 2012 when I had to abandon ship in a Hurricane, the TWO lifejackets (one on and one in my hand) saved me from drowning. Now I don’t fear driving a car, or riding a bike in traffic or even sailing, because I minimize my risk with the proper safety equipment.

Today we are all being asked to use proper handwashing, social distancing and antiseptic cleansing of surfaces to minimize the risk of acquiring COVID-19. I am doing all of those. Plus, I wear a face mask when going to the grocery store. Yet like me, I would ask you to do all you can to minimize your risk, but after doing so, don’t let it alarm you any more than a seat belt or bike helmet does.                                                                                    - Sue Steven, Ph.D. and Christ Church parishioner