Reflecting and Planning and Thanks

Will start this eNotes with my thanks again to the entire community for your thoughts and words of encouragement during my convalescence. I’m happy to report, largely due to the positive thinking of all around me, that I’m recovering well and it seems I’ve accessed the 80% of cases that lack severity. I thought I had been pretty well read on the issue going into this illness, but have to admit that I’ve learned more yet again and continue to marvel at how we are growing in our understanding of this virus and how adaptable we are to the knowledge and the shaping of our behaviors. A few learnings to share…

It is futile to spend too much time trying to identify the source of an infection. For me, lots of thinking went into this without much result. As I shared early in the year, the parameters that we apply in our protocols are based on knowledge, but are not rules. That’s because viruses don’t follow rules. This is why our swiss cheese layers exist. “There is no 100%” became real for me last week when I tested positive. I know many in our midst who equally have struggled to identify source in the face of a new infection. Don’t worry about it. All focus needs to shift to recovery and wellness.

In the midst of the illness, there is much concern about worsening symptoms. I have a great doctor who provided necessary advice, so follow those directions carefully. Thus far I have also protected my wife from further consequence by isolating myself and Mrs. Z continues to test negative. Other keys, as suggested by our community in their loving messages to me, include hydration and rest, two critical elements of recovery and assuring symptoms do not emerge or worsen. Seek medical help at earliest signs of anything going awry.

Even with that, 20% of cases will be more severe. We experienced that statistic with one of our own school staff who is getting better, but required more expanded care. We continue to monitor each case through our health office for this reason, consulting with families to make sure that the recovery is going forward as hoped. Staying on top of each case, our nurses regularly try to make sure they offer support and ongoing advice.

Finally, be on the watch for the aftermath. Reading many articles this weekend on recovery, immunization after recovery, etc. There is much to be learned in the current data as millions around the world are immunized and tracked. We are all hopeful that vaccination is coming soon and the next couple of weeks will help us see this more clearly. What we know is vaccination will do a couple of things. Right away, it will reduce spread of the virus – that’s a good thing and helps us avoid further mutation. Second, vaccination reduces the seriousness of symptoms if you get sick – even after only one dose of vaccine. That’s a good thing for hospitals and caregivers. But, we need to avoid getting sick, too. I’m now going to be watching for future complications in myself, as everyone who has recovered should. Much data is emerging about what happens weeks and months later. This only confirms that our protocols remain important to keeping the infection rate low to avoid the longer term health consequences that we are still learning about.

Let’s sustain our diligence in the coming weeks. Colder weather continues through next week and this is the time or year that we always felt was most concerning. Our daily results would suggest we are doing OK, but need to stay focused. As we always suggested, making our practices automatic and woven into the way we do things is important to sustainability. Stay the course. And, thank you for being such a wonderful caring and loving community!!

All evidence points to my return to your midst on Monday. Looking forward to re-joining you on the path forward.

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