An Essential Worker’s Perspective by Carly

every single time i turn into the driveway – “what if i today is the day i bring the virus home? what if i, unknowingly, invite danger through our front door?”. how could i possibly live with myself if that happened. sometimes i ugly cry outside. but never inside.
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i know i’m not alone. i imagine a lot of essential workers struggle to take deep breaths as they strip down, not allowing their children to touch them until they are clean, just as i do.
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daily, i see fear on the faces down every aisles. i see huge, barren holes on shelves from panic. i learn of delivery truck issues and wonder how that effects our community. i hear of heartache and overwhelming anxiety from my peers. i feel enormous guilt my mac is not setup in a checkstand. i answer emails and respond to comments from isolated, elderly people looking for ways to safely get their meds and food. i try to help advise on and think through new safety measures for all and communicate them the best way i can but things change rapidly. it never seems like enough.
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so when i finally do walk through our door; i try my best to leave the day behind me. i focus on playing Uno with the boys, maybe letting them win every time just to hear their jeers. i rock my daughter to sleep in the kitchen to otis redding & bill withers instead of trying to finish the dishes. when the kids do finally go down, i hug my husband tightly as he tells me his struggles balancing work & home life and how that can change at any given moment with the guard. then i prepare the homeschool lessons for the next morning, knowing full well i am not even remotely qualified.

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this shit is exhausting on just about every level. focusing on the good takes some readjusting sometimes but it helps. the good is there. it’s just buried at times.

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