Being alone on a holiday could be described as one of the most lonely things, but being alone on Christmas, not even family is something that most people would never expect to happen to them.
As the pandemic continues to destroy many peoples hopes and dreams, it may destroy christmas as we know it. For many people, health conditions keep them from seeing loved ones, no risks may be taken, or they have a chance at risking their life. Paulette and Ted Silvester, are two people who have to spend christmas by themselves, or they may be at risk of death.
The Silvesters have children and grandchildren who go to school and work, and could possibly be exposed to the virus very easily. Taking this kind of risk may impact their lives forever, and it just is not a risk they can take as elderly people who have past health issues.
Ted, who works from home as an entrepreneur, and Paulette who is unemployed are at extreme risk if they were to be exposed to the virus. Being elderly and in their 70’s, they are at a very high risk of mortality from the virus. According to statistics, anyone from ages 75-84 years old has an 8x higher risk at being hospitalized from the virus, and a 220x higher risk of death from the virus. With these statistics, the couple is extremely scared to even leave their home.
“I get so scared even to go grocery shopping, I always make sure to bring hand sanitizer everywhere, and you never know who has it around you, and what people are touching,” said Paulette. Paulette Ted, who just had surgery to remove stones from his kidney is at an even higher risk of getting the virus. While his body is healing, it would make it much harder to fight the virus off, and also heal from his surgery.
These risks are why they are unable to spend Christmas with family. With young grandchildren in highschool college, and even elementary school, they feel it is too high of a risk to be around family.
“My daughter and my two grandchildren all tested positive for COVID very recently,” said Ted. “It’s scary to think that I could have gone to her house while she was unaware she had been exposed, that could happen with any of my Kids.”.
Paulette and Ted are extremely saddened that they cannot see any family during the pandemic, but they feel that it is the safest choice for them.
“I love and miss all of my children and grandchildren, but if spending this Christmas alone means I can spend many more christmases in the future with them, then I will do it.” On the brighter side of things, taking these safety precautions might suck now, but spending a holiday alone for one year is a whole lot better than losing a family member.
Fears over COVID exposure is happening to people who are elderly with health issues, it is happening to people that have a job in the health industry.
Christine Hall, who is a cardiac ultrasound tech at Beverly hospital, Winchester Hospital, and Addison Hospital in Gloucester can only see immediate family during the pandemic. Having a job in a hospital, Christine is exposed to patients who have COVID every single day, which makes her a danger to others who are close to her and who would potentially have problems if they were to get covid.
“This year is going to be lonely, but I would rather keep my family safe rather than risk them getting sick.” Hall has to scan patients with COVID every day at work, since it is a disease that attacks the heart and respiratory system, it is her job to make sure the heart is functioning normally.
Although these people all have to spend Christmas alone this year, it is ultimately the safest choice for everyone. In order to make the virus go away, we all must do our part and social distance as much as we can to stop the spread of the virus. Even though this holiday is going to be lonely, we all know that we are keeping each other safe by spending it alone, and hopefully if we are all safe this holiday then we will be able to all get together next year.