‘She hasn’t left the house – but her dad who works for the railroad has.’: Mom of high-risk daughter says ‘our kids are aware and they are scared’

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“Our regularly scheduled Wednesday date night had a twist. It included two teens, a preteen, and an energetic 9-year-old who always sneaks out to see what movie we are watching or what game we are playing, hoping we would invite her. Tonight, we skipped our occasional glass of wine and weekly binge night of ‘The Ranch’ and we sat in a circle on the living room floor with the Bible and a small piece of paper with a pen for each of us.

After reading some scripture, we talked about privilege, fear, panic, media, increasing growth in cases, and greed.

It opened up the door to conversations we haven’t intentionally avoided, but we didn’t initiate them to feed into the fear, panic, and media frenzy. But we live with a high-risk child, and this virus is showing no mercy anytime soon.

I certainly am not underestimating the power of the Covid 19 virus. The numbers are climbing and claiming lives. I figured if we explained why we are amping up hand washing and social distancing, we wouldn’t instill sudden panic in our children but make them aware. We can teach them those who know best, the CDC and WHO, are well educated and this simple step will help spread the infection.

My belief is with exceptional hand washing, sanitizing, cleaning and self/family quarantine, this virus potentially could be avoided from one of us in our home. But that isn’t good enough. We have a much bigger job in this, and that is to help protect our elders, those who are unable to protect ourselves and help flatten the curve.

I’ve had a lot of messages about what steps we are taking in regard to Laycee being on immunosuppressants and having a basically nonexistent immune system do to her Behçet’s disease, a rare autoimmune disease. The truth is, this last week when I filled her hand with 16 pills that included chemo, steroids and another immunosuppressant, I wanted to puke. Because of her vulnerability, I procrastinated doing this. I pushed it out two days in hopes God would bless us with a miracle, and we would wake up and this would all be gone. Hand washing, sanitizing, avoiding sick people we know, avoiding public places when things like the flu, measles, strep are going around — these are our regular day to day precautions. Does this virus make me more fearful? Yes and no. She hasn’t left the house, we haven’t left — but her dad who works for the railroad has. His job at the railroad can only be shut down by the President. 5 days a week, over 40 hours total, he is working on trains that travel between states carrying supplies. Ones that are needed more than ever. That is where my fear lies, that he will bring it home.

Courtesy Nicole Dorn

At last night’s ‘family date night,’ we talked about our blessings and how privileged we are. Clean water, food, medication, heat, a roof over our heads, cleaning supplies, our health, my ability to work from home and Evern’s ability to still go to a job and receive a paycheck and medical coverage.

We talked about media and the fear and panic it creates and how it circulates and multiples by the simple click of a button. We talked about the number of growing cases, the unknown cases due to lack of testing, and prepared them that the numbers of those diagnosed will continue to rise and with continued prayer and hope, the number of those that heal will grow alongside it.

We talked about greed, the overbuying, the up-charging, the restrictions and the balance between give-and-take right now. We explained we can continue to give necessities where and when we can, but it is also okay to do so with caution to ensure we have enough for our family.

Things got interesting when each of us wrote down three blessings and one fear around the Corona Virus. I was caught off guard by some of the kids’ responses. I expected things like running out of toilet paper, running out of snacks, and losing Wi-Fi. Instead, it was things like losing a family member, Laycee dying because of her immune system, being the only ‘Dorn Survivor,’ guilt, rioting, and looting, Evern being laid off and not having an income, the virus mutating and fears we will have to protect our home, our supplies and ourselves from being attacked.

Needless to say, after reading all these aloud together — I realized our kids are aware and they are scared. I didn’t sleep last night because their health and safety are out of my control. It is going to take prayer, a commitment, and complete lockdown by not just our state, but the world as a whole to end this.”

Courtesy Nicole Dorn

This story was submitted to Love What Matters by Nicole Dorn, 35, of Seattle, Washington. Follow her family journey on Instagram here.  Do you have a similar experience? We’d like to hear your important journey. Submit your own story here. Be sure to subscribe to our free email newsletter for our best stories, and YouTube for our best videos.

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