From Austin, TX, doc Anna Vu-Wallace
Jun 25, 2020
Being in the hospital gives me a unique perspective on the current situation of the pandemic. Some of you shared with me that you don’t even look at the news anymore. That is understandable given the tumultuous period of our time. There are other ways to obtain vital information. This is a link to our statistics on COVID locally.
As hospital physicians, we are tasked with reaching everyone who may have influence as we see the sharp rise in our state and county. Attached are graphs that will tell you why this is so urgent that I am taking time to email you.
Let me tell you what my typical day looks like. After the morning with contemplative practices and reading, I put on my scrubs and head out. Fear of taking this virus home and infecting my family takes hold as I don my N95 mask tightly to my face. Protective goggles are placed. Shoes from the day before left in the garage wait for me to put back on. As I enter the hospital, another mask is placed on me along with a shield. As I enter the COVID unit, I am covered with a gown and hair cover and 2 layers of gloves. My shoes are covered with shoe coverings. By the end of the first hour, my face and ears are painful due to the safety gear. By the time I get home, indentations marked how long I have been working. The back of my ears bleed on occasion. I strip off all I have in the garage. I dare not to touch anything until I have showered. Even then, I know how unpredictable this virus is. I pray my family will be ok as I have decided not to find different living arrangements isolating from them.
I attend to many. Without a definitive treatment for COVID, the sorrow of families of the dying is often overwhelming to bear even with the contemplative coping tools I practice.
Today, I learned that 10 nurses I work with have been infected and sick, 6 hospitalized. There have been at least 4 physicians infected. I know some will die. What can I do? I can ask for your help.
- Would you wear a mask outside of your home and physical distance for the next year?
- Would you not invite friends to come to your home for dinner/drinks until our local health departments clear to do so?
- Would you stay home when possible? We have a stay home order from Mayor Adler.
- Would you hold off on any large gatherings until we see a trend downwards for at least 2 weeks?
I know this is difficult. Community is vital to our spiritual journey. From this doctor’s perspective, we still have the community, just in a different way. In our difficulty, I feel this is when we grow.
What I have learned from this virus is how connected we all are. What we do individually will affect the collective.
Before sending this email, I explored my motivation. Yes, I don’t deny that I ask for me. However, I also believe I ask from a place of non-duality for all of us.
Please feel free to share this.
Much love and gratitude for your friendship,
Dr Anna Vu-Wallace