More than a few weeks ago, I told members here that when I got a chance to talk to my daughter-in-law who is a RN in Anchorage, Alaska, I would post the experience with covid up in Alaska. This is finally the follow up to that conversation.

First I wanted to give a bit of background on this. She, my oldest son, and four grandbabies came down to my youngest son’s wedding on 9/11/21. We got a chance to spend about 3-4 days together, but due to the festivities, I never had a chance to speak one-on-one with my sweet daughter-in-law. I finally was able to connect with her on the phone.

She said when she first got back, she had the responsibility of getting some traveling medical professionals to come up to help with all the covid cases. I already knew about them having to make a choice on who would get care, and she touched on that a bit. Because she was working from home with administrative type work, she did not have to be in the hospital setting, but sometimes had to help on an emotional level, via phone, those who were making that decision. 

When I asked about the reason(s) for the increase in cases, she said part was because of the tourists coming in for the summer, but probably more because of all the unvaccinated. When covid first hit, she was working in Fairbanks in the public health department. She was in charge with setting up the testing and tracing protocol for the many villages throughout the western and northern part of Alaska. When the vaccines became available, she was able to also institute the protocol for getting the village people vaccinated. She said that it was so much easier to convince the native population in the villages to get vaccinated than the people in Anchorage. 

Even though she hasn’t been in a hospital setting, I can tell that she bears the emotional scars of dealing with this pandemic. I first noticed in a photo the difference in her. When I saw her in person, her eyes told the story of the burden to her soul of this pandemic. I can see the emotional burden she carries in her eyes and face.  I can hear it in her voice. 

She said that with all the covid cases, she was thinking about offering to work in the hospitals to help. She has four children, ages 11, 8 and a set of twins 2 years and 8 months. Because I am a selfish person, I hope she doesn’t go into a hospital setting. 

She did ask me to promise to get the booster when it became available. Moderna became available yesterday, and I kept my promise to this remarkable young lady.

I chose the photo of the ocean in Bandon, Oregon, because in spite of the power of the waves crashing on the beach and jetty, I find it remarkably calming on my spirit. 

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This is a Creative Commons article. The original version of this article appeared here.


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