New and ... feeling dread and unease of the times

Posted by robbie1956 @robbie1956, Apr 30, 2020

Hi, I’m new to the Mayo Clinic forums…like all, very aware of the times and I am very uncertain about everything….even trips to the store are laced with a feeling of unease…we wear masks and gloves, but sometimes at night I wake up with a feeling of dread..
The old line out of the Ancient Mariner comes to mind,
“Like one who on a lonesome road does walk in fear and dread, because he knows a frightful fiend does close behind him tread”…so glad to become a part of this forum…too much isolation….

Unease… yes, a good word for it. I am not frightened.. at least I do not think I am. I told my husband that I slept, but feel very tired. I have felt like I have awoken from a nightmare, but have no recall of dreaming. He said he is the same.

My county, Dougherty, is a hot spot in Georgia at 123 covid deaths .. many that have died had chronic conditions, but many did not. We plan on continuing our shelter in place.. just brief outings to purchase the essentials, and going to the doctor when necessary. We take all safety precautions we can… my husband does the shopping. It does not bother me to be home so much.. he is a people person though. My 92 year old mama is in a nursing home. I miss her so much. I phone her daily, but it just is not the same as hugging her.

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Oh, that is so sad. I wish you could hug your mama.

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@sueinmn

@robbie1956 Hi – I wanted to properly welcome you to Mayo Connect, and encourage you to look around for information that may help you in this most unsettling time. Yesterday I was working from my (mostly uncooperative) tablet, and unable to locate the following free course on handling our anxiety, I have found it helpful and so have my daughters. https://www.coursera.org/learn/manage-health-covid-19. Last night my husband was complaining about feeling anxious, so I plan to ask him to look at it as well. I'm guessing his feelings arose from the abrupt change from 7 weeks of total stay-at-home safety in a small community to 3 days of totally uncontrolled public travel since we both have serious underlying health issues that make us vulnerable.
Like you, I have been limiting my exposure to media (not just TV & radio, but social as well.) Some other things that help me a lot are exercise (mostly daily walking), contact (mostly virtual) with family & friends and distraction (sewing, reading, painting…) What works for you when you get that restless feeling?
Sue

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Hello Sue, thank you for welcoming me and sharing your situation…my “unease” came again, and it usually does in the wee morning hours (usually accompanied by having to make frequent trips to the bathroom)…I can get these feelings in a Target, like today….or in the supermarket…..and a lot of times very late at night…..I usually watch old vintage films, film noirs, sci-fi classics,
(War of the Worlds) 1953 is actually coming out on Blu Ray via Shout/Scream factory..these old innocent films from my childhood give me comfort…but, when I get the “unease” – it’s the worst, in those early a.m. hours of consciousness, horrible scenarios…..being left alone, with nobody to turn to for help….then panic for awhile….
Like many of us, I have underlying health conditions that limit my intake of any kind of “spirits”….the best thing I do, try to keep moving….I also walk, I try to get 7000 steps + a day, practice guitar scales and theory and lean on my poor wife, who also has health concerns….but I feel for the person who has nobody to live with and has to go this alone…I hope this gives you some idea as to what I do…..you seem to be doing well and the right things….I definitely have to stay off the cable networks…..thanks again, and so glad I am on this wonderful discussion group….

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I agree. Was reading articles about cleaning one’s home and it was insane. Can see if you have family members at home who all go in different directions during day. But for those who are single or retired couple, etc. – exactly what or who is making all these germs?! Friend who was microbiologist agrees!

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@sueinmn

Unease – what a great descriptor for the feeling these days! We just traveled 3 days cross country from winter to summer home, and I worried, fretted and planned for weeks. Phew! We are home – with awe at how many are ignoring the issues of social distancing, face covering, cleaning… 3 days of truck stops and rest areas, 2 motels – thankfully we had all our own food. I have great admiration for those facing the public and praying to stay well.
Now we will quarantine for 2 weeks in our still closed down state, then try to figure out when we'll feel comfortable beginning to move around.
Sue

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Glad you made it home and are well! It is very unsettling the number of people who do not abide by guidelines that are there to help protect them and others. The Creator/God/or whoever one believes us must guide us at this time as others seem unwilling to heed caution….as I heard today a saying- people seem to be choosing “health or wealth”. Without health though, there will not be wealth again😔

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I’ve been wondering that also…Washing hands for sure after going outside and shopping, and coming home….but then, I would think regular washing would suffice….I talked to a fellow I knew, the poor man thinks that the COVID 19 virus can ‘come and get you’ through a connected townhouse…not to minimize hand washing, but I have said that I just can’t listen to anymore media coverage of this……

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@wisco50

I agree. Was reading articles about cleaning one’s home and it was insane. Can see if you have family members at home who all go in different directions during day. But for those who are single or retired couple, etc. – exactly what or who is making all these germs?! Friend who was microbiologist agrees!

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I could not agree with you more….if you’re at home, and have washed down after coming home from a shopping expedition, then just regular washing at proper times would seem sensible….very good point…

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@migizii

Glad you made it home and are well! It is very unsettling the number of people who do not abide by guidelines that are there to help protect them and others. The Creator/God/or whoever one believes us must guide us at this time as others seem unwilling to heed caution….as I heard today a saying- people seem to be choosing “health or wealth”. Without health though, there will not be wealth again😔

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@migizii I am afraid for many people it's more than a choice between "health and wealth" – more a matter of survival. It is alarming in this seemingly wealthy nation that so many are literally one or two paychecks removed from hunger and/or homelessness. So I get that people want and need to get back to work ASAP. The government and employers need to figure out how to make that happen.
I really hope we come out of this with an understanding of who the MOST VALUABLE workers are in our country – truckers, teachers, meat packers, farm workers, retail workers, medical assistants – and the collective will to make sure they earn a living wage and medical coverage.
Sue

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@robbie1956

I’ve been wondering that also…Washing hands for sure after going outside and shopping, and coming home….but then, I would think regular washing would suffice….I talked to a fellow I knew, the poor man thinks that the COVID 19 virus can ‘come and get you’ through a connected townhouse…not to minimize hand washing, but I have said that I just can’t listen to anymore media coverage of this……

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@robbie1956 Here is an explanation I used with someone who had that kind of fear: "A virus particle is like a speck of dust, not a cockroach. It doesn't have any way of moving on its own. It can touch you through close contact with droplets directly from other people, that's why social distancing is important and face masks can be useful. But once the virus lands, the only way it can move from a surface to your body is by touching it, then touching your face. That's why we counsel you to wash hands regularly and keep them off your face." Then I go on to explain the virus has a relatively short life on most surfaces, and routine house cleaning plus sanitizing surfaces touched after bringing in groceries, mail or packages is all you need. I used the cockroach example because they are a huge pest in South Texas, you could also use ant or flea to make the point.
Sue

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@robbie1956

I’ve been wondering that also…Washing hands for sure after going outside and shopping, and coming home….but then, I would think regular washing would suffice….I talked to a fellow I knew, the poor man thinks that the COVID 19 virus can ‘come and get you’ through a connected townhouse…not to minimize hand washing, but I have said that I just can’t listen to anymore media coverage of this……

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Poor guy!

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@sueinmn

@robbie1956 Here is an explanation I used with someone who had that kind of fear: "A virus particle is like a speck of dust, not a cockroach. It doesn't have any way of moving on its own. It can touch you through close contact with droplets directly from other people, that's why social distancing is important and face masks can be useful. But once the virus lands, the only way it can move from a surface to your body is by touching it, then touching your face. That's why we counsel you to wash hands regularly and keep them off your face." Then I go on to explain the virus has a relatively short life on most surfaces, and routine house cleaning plus sanitizing surfaces touched after bringing in groceries, mail or packages is all you need. I used the cockroach example because they are a huge pest in South Texas, you could also use ant or flea to make the point.
Sue

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Thanks, that is well put…I and my wife wash hands and do the counters when getting home from outside….and when we handle the mail…but, sometimes, without being a nag, after the mail, not so sure about always….probably though….yes,
My acquaintance down in NC really thinks this virus can come through pipes, vents, I never even realized that townhomes were that intertwined…..but Like your description and explanations….

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@robbie1956

Hello Sue, thank you for welcoming me and sharing your situation…my “unease” came again, and it usually does in the wee morning hours (usually accompanied by having to make frequent trips to the bathroom)…I can get these feelings in a Target, like today….or in the supermarket…..and a lot of times very late at night…..I usually watch old vintage films, film noirs, sci-fi classics,
(War of the Worlds) 1953 is actually coming out on Blu Ray via Shout/Scream factory..these old innocent films from my childhood give me comfort…but, when I get the “unease” – it’s the worst, in those early a.m. hours of consciousness, horrible scenarios…..being left alone, with nobody to turn to for help….then panic for awhile….
Like many of us, I have underlying health conditions that limit my intake of any kind of “spirits”….the best thing I do, try to keep moving….I also walk, I try to get 7000 steps + a day, practice guitar scales and theory and lean on my poor wife, who also has health concerns….but I feel for the person who has nobody to live with and has to go this alone…I hope this gives you some idea as to what I do…..you seem to be doing well and the right things….I definitely have to stay off the cable networks…..thanks again, and so glad I am on this wonderful discussion group….

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@robbie, Like you, what until recently for me was a once to the bathroom and back to sleep occurrence during the "wee morning hours", (pun intended? vbg?), now finds me awake for longer. Fortunately, I am not fearful or imagining scary scenarios, I just can't get back to sleep for awhile.

I've found playing a computer game or two or reading nearly always allows me to go back for another several hours of sleep. Sometimes, writing in my journal helps. May 1st, I wrote the following and sent it to my family who are living out-of-state:

"Texas, Our Texas, All Hail the Glorious State" : "Fourteen days following our esteemed state governor, AButt’s, declared shut down, today, May 1st, (not April 1st), at sunrise, my friends and I will join the 3 mile line of cars for admission to a nearby state park.

After navigating the overly crowded nature paths, we’ll lunch at our favorite restaurant for elegant inside pasta dining and toast our freedom with a glass of bubbly.

To celebrate Finally being liberated from lock down, we’ll use our X-mas gifted Blockbuster tickets for giant sized movie popcorn before settling down for a rerun of "The Way We Were".

Nostalgia will mandate a stop at our favorite bar for a Manhatten before a little jive time and hopeful moves at our all time favorite Singles Steppin' Out dance hall.

Granted our early morning barbershop hair cuts have given us an astonishing new look but after all, we can be trendsetters, too. Besides, we seriously health compromised seniors will have done our part to support the economy of "Texas, Our Texas". Feel free to sing along at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wCxKVpaAI_g

According to AP release on Thursday, 5/31st, “And on the eve of every retailer, restaurant and movie theater being allowed to let customers back in the door, Texas set a single-day record high for fatalities Thursday with 50.

Stay tuned to read the secrets of our successful reopening in “Politics Unleashed”. Our group won’t be around to gloat but “What good is sitting alone in your room? Come hear the music play. Life is a Cabaret old chum, Come to the Cabaret”

Have a nice day. Oh, and if you have any extra Vit C, Vit D, Zinc and catnip, Precious and I would be obliged. Love and Hugs, Grammer"

Robbie, I think I'll be doing more journaling during those early wakeful hours. This proved cathartic…Smiles

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