The Grave Blanket

I was working myself into a tizzy working on my son’s grave blanket for the holiday season.  As usual, I get my greens from Lowe’s discard bin and bring them home to make the blanket.  It is usually pretty simple with a big bow in the middle to cover the zip tie and perhaps a few other things to make it festive. 

I had the evergreens assembled with a zip tie but didn’t have a bow.  Why are there no bows?  Are they out on the containers, too?   I was trying to cover the zip tie with random things I picked up at the Dollar Store.  I’ve learned not to spend too much money for grave decorations as people just steal them.  So sad.

It was looking mediocre at best.  I was working on the tailgate of my truck when I heard, “Hey girl!” I turned to look and my neighbor, LeAnn was walking up the driveway.  

“What are you doing?” she asked.  

“Nothin’ really.”  I answered.  Sometimes that’s just an easier answer.  Especially this time of year.

Though we walked back over to the downed tailgate and looked at the greens all zip tied together. 

I told her, “I am  trying to put together my son’s grave decoration but I couldn’t finish it because I couldn’t find any bows today. So I am improvising and trying to cover the zip tie in the center with random things I found.”

She said, “Well, here. I have a bow right here!”

I looked and she had a big silver bow in her hand with her arm stretching out toward me.  

With a look of astonishment and a big, tearful hug, I took the bow to add to the evergreens in the truck.

Most of the day I listened repeatedly to Where are you Christmas? sung by Faith Hill.  

I remember for years wondering 

Where are you Christmas?”  Why can’t I find you?

My world changed, I rearranged 

I’m not the same one, See what the time’s done?” 

Is that why you have let me go? 

(words from the song)

However, at the end of the song, her heart is filled with love and she has found Christmas joy.

My friends fill my heart with love, so with that I look for the joy of Christmas in the people I see and meet everyday.

So back to the bow in LeAnn’s outstretched arm.  Why at this moment did she just happen to have a bow in her hand that my heart needed?

I have another friend who says, “Divine Intervention.”  

In the midst of my crisis, a small miracle occurred. 

Whether it was Divine Intervention or luck, coincidence or fortuity, it made my heart happy for a while. 

Moments like these get me through just one more holiday.

We shared a hug and a tear or two and I feel so grateful for such great friends who appear when you need them most.

I did move on from Where are you Christmas? to Santa Baby after my small miracle and just as I sat down to type this post, half of the lights on the tree went out.  Oh Christmas!

“The Box”

“The Box:”

Baby calendar, baby book, Big Bird balloon and stuffed toy

First bib, bottle, pacifiers, rattle, shoes, socks, pajamas

First outfit

Captain Crunch Cereal in a sealed cup, his favorite

Newspaper articles, photos, 

Birthday cards, get well cards

Stacks and stacks of insurance claims and bills, hospital wrist bands

sympathy cards

every card that came with flowers we received at the funeral, 

guest book with hundreds of names written inside

his last outfit,  my last outfit

dried tears that have fallen into that box over the years

I have had this box for many years now. As of late, the box sat on a shelf in the closet. It is a box I look through every year on his birthday and death date and random other times throughout the year. I look through the box and think about that very short time in my life and how I wish I could have changed it. There are so many memories packed inside, some good memories, others- definitely the worst time of my life. 

February 22.

Just another day of the year for some, perhaps more meaningful for others and yet bittersweet for a random few, perhaps. I fall into the random few category.

This time of the year has always been bitter but I’ve tried to make it sweet in years past and will continue to do so.

“It” is one of the most difficult days of a bereaved parent’s life. The birthdate of their dead child. However it is a day that can’t always remain exclusively bitter when the twin brother still needs to have a celebration and be recognized.

It’s been this way for so many years now, though it seems like yesterday we had their first birthday party. They smashed their little faces into their ice cream cakes from Baskin-Robbins. It was a party like no other. We were so grateful our little boy had survived so much in his short life and the other two children were handling our insecurities and discombobulations like pros, thanks to grandma and grandpa and numerous friends helping with them. It was time for a celebration!

Our family had already been through so much by the time the boys first birthday arrived. Code Blue is something we were familiar with in the first 365 days of these little boys lives. Code Blue is something you see on “Grey’s Anatomy,” not something you hear while sitting in the waiting room at the hospital realizing it is your little boy the Code Blue team is running toward….again.

Just a short six months after the birthday party, our son was dead.

He had been through so much in his first year of life that I never dreamed he was going to die.  Who thinks that? He survived every Code Blue! Had I known he was going to die would I have done things differently? Who knows? Woulda’ coulda’ shoulda?  Over the years I have beaten myself up wondering if I did the right thing? Did I spend enough time with him? Did I spend enough time with the other kids? Could I have done anything to have prevented his death? Yes and No to all of these questions.

I pulled the box off the shelf in the closet and took things out piece by piece for one final look and shed a few tears.

Packing and needing to scale down for the next chapter in my life, I took one last look at the box, contemplated putting it back on the shelf, but instead sent a text to the kid’s dad asking him if he wanted “The box.”

 He did.  

He came by, picked it up and put it in the backseat of his car and drove away. Standing in the driveway watching “The Box” leave my possession was heart wrenching. However, I know he needed to take some time to look through the box and remember some of the happy memories that were in there, too.  “The Box” is healing in a way, and  I wish him a peaceful heart as he looks through each pair of sunglasses from the Drillers Baseball games, books they’ve read and birthday cards that are stored in “The Box.”

I did keep a couple of things, like the bibs in the picture and the shirt I wore the last time I held my son. I will wear it today.

In the meantime, Happy Birthday Eric. I hope you have a sweet day. 

I Love you.

From the Heart of a 4 Year Old

“Can I make these bigger so I can give them to Ick Ick?”  asked 4 year old Dylan as he was pulling on and stretching his SpiderMan pajamas. “What do you mean? ” I replied.

“I want to make my Spiderman Pajamas bigger so Uncle Ick Ick can wear them and I want to change them from Spiderman to Superman!”  exclaimed Dylan with a sparkle in his eye.

“Hmmm, I’m not sure we can really stretch them big enough so they will fit him but we can try! Why do you want to change them to Superman?” I asked.  “Because Uncle Ick Ick is a doctor and he saves people, so he is Superman.”

From the heart of a 4 year old.  

Attempting to stretch the pajamas was fun but impossible.  Since we weren’t able to stretch the size 5T pj’s into large man’s sized pajamas, we settled for drawing a picture of Superman and will send it to Eric (Ick Ick,) in the mail (Ick Ick is how the kids pronounce Eric. Eric is an Er doctor in OKC- He is my son).

Thank you health care workers.  I appreciate your tireless effort!

It’s August.

Who could have imagined my son and I would be the only ones in our immediate family with jobs and an income? A teacher and a doctor (though his hours as an ER doctor have been cut).   I’ve only been with out a paycheck for August, so I can’t complain. I have had some financial setbacks, minor in comparison to others, but enough for a teacher to at least notice. 

I tried to withdraw $500 from my account in China.  The ATM did not disperse the money though the bank in China charged my account as if I had received the cash. What a nightmare trying to sort this.  But I am thankful for my friend, Melissa who has an international phone plan and lets me use her phone to call China.  It’s not looking good for the recovery of the money. It’s hard to solve these problems being 7000 miles away from the bank and the lack of my Chinese speaking skills, of course complicates things.  There were other China expenses that weren’t anticipated at the end of the contract but I will survive the loss.  Mine are not nearly as bad as so many millions of other people. 

The $500 ATM withdrawal attempt hurt a bit but a bigger sting came when someone thought they needed the kid’s swings in my front yard more than I did. They cut them down and took them last week in the middle of the night.  So strange, as there are many of these swings in the neighborhood and only mine were taken.  The kids were so disappointed not to have their swings when they came over.  I hope somebody’s kids are enjoying them. Though, I would have loaned the swings to them if they would have just asked, probably would have even thrown a couple of masks. 

Strangely enough, I go for a few days each year in August wondering what is wrong with me as I experience an overwhelming feeling of sadness, sometimes even feeling like I’m sinking into a bottomless pit. 

Then it’s like….”Oh, I know, August 19 is well on it’s way.”  This is the day my son died.  I never forget that my son died, never.  But I don’t really keep track of days in August. They are pretty much all the same, except for the couple of days before August 19, August 19 itself and the first day of school.  Other than that, I never know what day it is. I used to know when Sunday rolled around but that’s even hit and miss these days.

To me, it is the worst time of the year, August. Emotions are all over the place.  The last couple of days have been really difficult.  I don’t know why the whole week before my son’s  death is so hard but it always has been. I guess maybe I think “Could a’ Would a’ Should a.”  I re-live everything up to the point of his death. 

The struggle is real and this go round is compounded with the addition of Covid, the violence, hatred and uncertainty in our country, the theft of the swings, loss of money in the ATM and family members losing their jobs. It seems like a lot to process. These kinds of things can take a person down a deep dark tunnel if you allow it.  Life Sucks if you let it!

 I certainly see how people can be depressed during this unprecedented time in our lives.  It is hard sitting alone day after day all by yourself in a normal situation but now, my goodness.  Give someone a call who you haven’t spoken to in a while.  Check in.  You never know how happy you might make someone.  It’s worth it!

Today however, has been just an amazing day.  It brought happiness and heart felt joy for a moment in time that was much needed.

The DK’S (daughter’s kids) spent the night last night so they kept me busy or maybe I kept them busy, who knows. This morning at 5:42 am, my phone rang.  I’m so glad I heard it! My sweet neighbor across the street had gone into labor. She and her husband, (the doctor who was sleeping in his RV during the onset of Covid) needed to go to the hospital and her mom was an hour or so away but headed toward Tulsa as fast as she could travel. In the meantime, though they needed someone to stay with their kids so they could get to the hospital.  I got the DK’S up and we walked across the street to be with their children while waiting for grandma to arrive from Enid.  They will never know the joy it brought to my heart to help in such a small way.  I needed them more than they needed me this morning. 

Later on, my daughter and her husband came over and helped me with some much needed chores.  My friend Barb randomly stopped by and we all had lunch together.  It’s the little things these days that bring so much happiness and sanity.

After the kids left, Barb and I were sitting in the front yard.  My neighbor, (the other doctor on the street) hurriedly came out her front door, throwing on her shoes and was headed to the hospital to deliver a baby.  It just made me smile to see her hurrying around to get to the hospital to help bring new life into the world. 

Mr friend and I decided to go to Sam’s Club. While there, I ran into three more friends, Jason, Lisa and Cheryl. It was so great to see all of them and actually speak to people.  Sorry friends,  but when I see people now, I talk forever!  I heard from my friend Stephanie this evening who I’ve not seen in such a while. It was great to chat with her. It’s the little conversations and the amazing friendships that fill the heart these days. 

At home, I do for the most part remain positive but sometimes I just feel like banging my head against the wall.  I have two friends who constantly amaze me with their positive attitudes in the midst of this Covid-Chaos.  It is always so great to talk with or text them.  Every day without fail, I receive a good morning greeting on facebook from one of my most positive friends.  I’ve come to look for those greetings everyday now as a great start to the day.  It’s always nice to know someone is thinking of you, or me, I guess. 

Thanks everyone for making this such a great day! I wish you all a day filled with positive people in your life, random people stopping by, messages from friends, a happy family, a life free from financial stress and swings in your front yard. 

Send someone a message today.  Let them know you are thinking about them.  You just might make their heart happy. 



Are we satisfied with the actions of our leaders that we feel we don’t need to try harder to contain the virus?  

Sadly, the opportunity to prepare for and stop the spread of the virus came and went months ago.  The world watched as China’s nurses and doctor’s pleaded for their lives and the lives of their colleagues. We watched as they were building hospitals in ten days and dragging people out of their apartments who were infectious. Once the first case was diagnosed in Washington, the USA’S complacent reaction was an indication of things to come. 

Complacency said this is no worse than the flu.

Complacency says I’m still going shopping.

The complacent are disregarding the highly contagious nature of the virus.

Being complacent has put a horrible strain on our medical system.  It is causing our doctors and nurses to sleep in RV’S in their driveways.  It has caused the death of nearly 7,000 people in the USA; 16 of those deaths by March 29 and more than doubling to 38 by April 3 in Oklahoma. 

Complacency has led to women making masks for health care professionals as quickly as they can. They are being mailed and given to doctors and nurses across the USA because they don’t have enough PPE.

“Heroes Work Here” signs are being seen at hospitals.

Complacency has led to loved ones dying alone in hospitals. Supermarket shelves being emptied. People losing their jobs.  School closings. 

People losing millions from plunging share prices.

Please don’t let complacency continue to burden our health care system, our livelihood, and the health and welfare of our friends and family.

 I have a suitcase sitting in my living room reminding me not to become complacent. I walk around it everyday, not that I need a reminder that my son’s health and that of so many of our medical professionals and first responders are in jeopardy.  I think of that everyday. 

It reminds me to think forward and to remind people to disinfect their front door handles, washing machine/dryer handles, glasses, etc. It reminds me to be prayerful. It reminds me that I have to return to Beijing to fulfill my employment contract, and it reminds me that I need to live life to its fullest inside my home!

The suitcase is packed and ready for a 14 day Chinese quarantine at a government facility upon return to Beijing. It is filled with Clorox Wipes, a roll of TP, snacks, just add water soups, bowl, spoon, etc. ( I’ve seen pictures of the food other teachers have been served in quarantine upon their arrival) I still need to add sheets, a pillow, towel, and flip-flops so I won’t have to touch anything, wherever it is they decide to quarantine us.

What I don’t understand about some people’s complacent actions is why is all the toilet paper gone? If people are happy with the lack of enforced lockdowns and continue to go on as normal, why are beer and potato chips selling out and being restocked as if we could never find them in the stores again? Some must not be that convinced.

Complacency is not going to stop the spread of the virus or its economic impact.  

Staying home is going to help, but the spread is quite significant now. 

Be vigilant in your actions so we can enjoy our family and friends sooner, than later… and we won’t be subjected to binge watching Tiger King!


Rattled to the Core!

I wrote in a previous blog post “Will their Smiles Still be Seen?” about all of the sulphur being released into the air during the peak of the virus in China, presumably due to all of the crematoriums burning so many bodies everyday. This is what I was reminded of today as I was tending to essential business at the Post Office (mailing masks to my son and his colleagues at the hospital in Lawton, Oklahoma). 

I saw something so disturbing to ME and had it not been for the masks in my hand that just might be needed due to the shortage of REAL MASKS, I may have gone running out the door from that post office lobby. 

Which by the way, when I am at the grocery store, or gas station I don’t see people wearing masks at all.  I know there seems to be some debate over whether they help or not, but if you have stockpiled these masks and you aren’t going to use them, why keep them?  Please send them on to our healthcare workers.  I have an address of a hospital or two if you need willing recipients of all the masks that are sitting in your cabinet or on your shelf. You can even go to and find someone who needs masks more than you need them  collecting dust on a shelf.

Sorry, Back to the Post Office Lobby.  I honestly felt as though I might be sick. I just stood there for a minute trying to take in the visual I had in my head. I saw Italy and the military trucks transporting bodies, I saw friends dying alone, I saw myself getting out of the sulphur filled skies of China, I saw my son. 


Behind the counter, at the post office was a roll of stickers, which read

“Cremated Remains.”

Perhaps they always have these stickers, however I have been using this particular post office several times a week for years, (except of course when I am in China) and I have never seen them sitting out on the counter.  I guess mailing cremains is more common than I thought.  Actually, I’ve never thought about it. 


I proceeded to the counter and wanted to ask about the stickers, but I couldn’t get any words to come out of my mouth. I was barely able to insert my card into the reader and I wasn’t about to use my un-gloved hand to touch the machine.  I finally got the card in the slot. I had mentioned to a friend a day earlier that “I don’t easily break, but I am about at my breaking point.” I guess I’m really there!  Seeing these stickers caused so many flashbacks, flash forwards and questions in just the few seconds I was standing there. 

I thought: 

1. Are we already to this point or close to it where we will, or already are mailing cremains because family members can’t go and pick them up? 

2. Will we be enlisting the services of the National Guard to carry bodies from Expo Square to the crematorium?  

3. Will people die alone? 

4. Will family members be wracked with guilt not being able to be with their loved ones when they pass away?

The answer to the last two questions above, is YES. It is already happening. I’ve seen on the news nurses holding the hand of a dying patient while trying to FaceTime with the patient’s loved ones from their homes sending their final goodbyes.

What about the first two questions listed above? Wait to be seen, I guess.

But, so many people think the “limited” guidelines that have finally been put in place, don’t apply to them. I rode my bike the other day along the river trail.  It is great to see so many people getting exercise, running or riding their bikes. But, there were SO MANY PEOPLE gathering in large groups. Children were climbing on the benches along side the trails and then putting cookies in their mouths. It didn’t appear that the adult was washing down the bench or the child’s hands before they were seen putting something in their mouths.  

If you are going to use the trails, keep it moving. Please don’t stop and gather in large groups. Maybe bring your own blanket to sit on rather than a bench that everyone else sits on. If we can’t follow the established guidelines, or use our common sense, we are only subjecting more healthcare workers and first responders to unnecessary risks. 

I stayed inside for 7 weeks, 4 weeks in China and 3 weeks in the states upon my return. Here, I didn’t even have to totally stay inside, I could have gone on a bike ride or walk around the neighborhood according to the Health Department. I chose not to do so. I took my trash can to the curb at night when no one was outside. I wore a mask to do that. I stayed inside an additional week just to be sure.  I did it for you.  Can you do it for others? 

It seems these days when we are presented with an easier and faster way to do something, we are going to take that route, regardless of the circumstances.   This is the society we have created.

This crisis isn’t one of those circumstances.  There is nothing fast, easy or convenient in dealing with this virus.  We must be patient!  We must follow the guidelines.

We are a nation in crisis. Do your part so you don’t receive a box in the mail that reads ”Cremated Remains.”

Will their smiles still be seen?

Are you doing your part? 

Watching this pandemic unfold while sitting in China was an eerie experience.  I kept up with the daily death toll, while listening to so many ask “What’s the big deal? The flu kills more people than this each year.” Yes, the flu does kill many but we don’t shut down borders, restrict air travel and activate the National Guard for the flu. 

So much confusion over this new virus and where it came from, how contagious it is and how it continues spreading so rapidly.  Of course not knowing the language and unable to watch Chinese TV and understand it, we (teachers) relied on news from our own countries, USA and New Zealand. Each reporting something different or new.  Chinese colleagues were relaying different information.  Our heads were spinning.

I remember hearing that the Chinese government placed the city of WuHan on lockdown, but told the citizens it was going to be effective the following day.  This gave millions of people time to leave WuHan before the city and it’s people were on lockdown.  Begin the spread. There is a lesson to be learned there.

business locked and closed in Beijing

Once this city was on lockdown, others soon followed. Schools remained closed and still are closed. Stores and businesses began to close. The only establishments that were to remain open were those of necessity, supermarkets and pharmacies. Deliveries of all kind; food, groceries, TaoBao, etc. were stopped.

Heed their actions?

Beijing, a city of 20 million plus people were staying inside.  I could look out my apartment window and see only a few people in the park, here and there. We would go to the park, donned in our “protective wear” to walk, gather information on the virus and count our daily blessings. Upon return to my apartment, I would remove my shoes at the door, wash my coat, gloves and clothes.  I wiped down my front door handle and the floor.  I cleaned my glasses and took a shower.  Every day without fail.  Who knows what could have been lurking on my clothing?

During our walks and toward the 2nd or third week into our self-imposed quarantine in Beijing, we noticed more “smog” or “pollution” in Beijing than normal.  Data at this time suggested an increase in the amount of sulphur dioxide in the air, possibly from the crematorium burning so many bodies each day. We were nearly 1000 miles away from WuHan but seeing the effects in the air quality. This just made me think of how the skies must have looked at Auschwitz-Birkenau in the 1940’s with ovens operating continuously, burning bodies on a daily basis.  What a tragic time in our world’s history!

Now the military in Italy are transporting coffins of people to cremation centers.

We are watching all of this unfold in other countries, yet are we doing everything we can to stop the spread? I felt guilty picking my car up from the shop today. I wore gloves and wiped down the counter, the door handles and pens at the dealership. I stopped by the store to pick up a few things, again feeling guilty,  and saw my friend, Rex, there.  No hugs, just an elbow bump and that was too close for me. 

I have remained Virus free and have made very nerve-wracking decisions to get me to this point and back to the USA. So it is possible, we just have to do our part.

 Travel restrictions should have been put in place for Spring Break Holiday weeks ago in the USA.  I feel lockdowns, restrictions and quarantines should have been in effect prior to this week. California leaders estimate 25.5 million people will contract the virus over the next 8 weeks but even knowing this, people go on about their non essential business of the day. Let’s pull it together and work for the safety of our city, state and country or the spread continues.

The National Guard has already been authorized to provide planning and guidance throughout this situation. So it looks like the State of Oklahoma is preparing for the worse. Until local and federal government leaders provide more uniformity across the country, it will get worse. As in China, some places did this, others did that. The spread continued.

I know it is all new, we weren’t really sure what it was capable of at the onset, but now we are seeing the effects of this virus. It is our civic duty to act with the best interests of our families, friends, doctors, nurses and first responders at heart.  

My son, the doctor and his beautiful ER doctor friends, I hope their smiles and those of all ER physicians can still be seen

Overall, I was in quarantine for 7 weeks.   I survived.  You will, too! so DON’T let it! Find something to do and someone to help. You will feel so much better during this time of insecurity.

Stop the spread….Do it for our real heroes, those who don’t know what they are being exposed to on a daily basis; first responders, health care providers and my son, the doctor. 

6PM Phone Call

While I was writing my post last night and got the SKYPE call, my heart started racing, I grabbed the phone, shaking, dropped it, tried to open it, FACE ID wouldn’t work, finally typed in the code and had a connection with the Health Department.  I was clearly rattled as my conversations with the health department had ended. 

During this short time of just trying to answer the phone, I started thinking back to my post from April 2011, “4AM Phone Calls are Never Good.”  I hope there will never be another phone call like that one.  Nothing compares.

How Eric survived this accident is beyond me.

Though, there was another call about 12 years ago when Eric called from a stranger’s phone and said, “I’m ok, but I had an accident on the highway. The state troopers, fire, ambulance and life flight are here, and they say I’m lucky to be alive, but I’m ok.”

Well if Life Flight is there, then you’re in good hands!  I won’t worry! GEEZ! (sarcasm)  I sped down the highway,  couldn’t even get pulled over for speeding. Emergency personnel were all at the scene of the accident as I noticed when I arrived.


Ok, Just answer the SKYPE call. Say something. You know it’s not the kids.  The Health Department wouldn’t be calling about the kids.


Hello had a BIG QUESTION MARK at the end. I was finished with my quarantine.  I had no symptoms. Why were they calling?

Was somebody symptomatic whom I had been near?

Was someone ill on the plane ?

All these questions and thoughts swirling around in my head for what seemed like forever, but in reality, was only a few seconds.

The health official was just calling to tell me they were going to be in the area for dinner and asked if I wanted them to bring my official, signed “You’ve completed quarantine and you’re free” paper to my home, rather than mailing it!  


I laid back on the couch with a sigh of relief.

I’m still good to go, physically.  

Leaving my house, when I do choose to do so, I kind of see like taking a first, backward step off a mountain with my repelling gear. That first step is the hardest, but after that it is an amazing experience, soaring to the next landing as you push yourself away from the wall with your feet. I need to push myself away from the front door and out into the sunshine today.

I will carry my “release” paper with me for a while, especially if I need to go to the doctor or dentist while I am here. I hope I won’t have to as I don’t have insurance while in America.  I would have to go travel to another country for medical treatment for anything to be covered.  But then there is the risk for infection again and so the story repeats. 

Thank you everyone!  I’m going to get ready for the day and go sit in the sunshine in my magic chair!

I love you all!

TULSA WOMAN Released from Quarantine by the Tulsa Health Department


Breaking News:

A Tulsa  woman recently home from Beijing, China has been in quarantine in her home and has been symptom free from the coronavirus during her 14 day quarantine. 

Today, she is a free woman.

Oh goodness.  I’m now the “Tulsa Woman. “

I’m a free Tulsa woman! 

 I’ve completed the mandatory quarantine established by the CDC, which was monitored by the Tulsa Health Department. As of 4:40 p.m. on Friday, February 28, I took my final SKYPE monitoring call for a temperature reading for the health department.  

temperature monitoring form, 14 days complete, no fever, no symptoms

I was told as long as I remained symptom free through the rest of the day, I would be released from quarantine and free to go on the 29th.

Would I go out at midnight and drive around the city?

They wished me well and I knew I wouldn’t have further contact with them unless there was an emergency.

During this quarantine period, I discovered that at a local hospital in Tulsa, administration, infectious disease specialists, lung specialists and others were being briefed on a contingency plan for the local coronavirus case quarantined at home in Tulsa in case treatment is needed for that individual. 

 ME!  That individual is me!

This was in relation to me choosing this hospital when asked by health officials where I would like to go should I have an emergency.

Then they contact that hospital to notify them of my selection. Lucky hospital.

 The good news is I’m not infected and that local hospital is prepared with a contingency plan for anyone who may become infected later on.  It’s great to hear our local health care providers are talking and prepared for an emergency such as the coronavirus. 

How do I feel?

It’s great to know I can come or go as I please. 

However, with the increase of Coronavirus cases in the USA and two more people being investigated for the virus in the State of Oklahoma, and with the flu season at its peak, questions from friends regarding the incubation period, and finally upon receipt of some hateful messages, I have chosen to stay homebound for just a bit longer.

I do not have symptoms!

People say masks don’t work, even though they are sold out across the globe. Surgical masks don’t keep the smaller airborne particles  from sneaking through and around the non-fitted areas around the mouth and nose and N95 masks need to be properly fitted, but I will keep my masks handy and wear them in larger groups of people for a while when I do finally go out in public, anyway.  The mask may just stop that one, large droplet expelled from someone’s mouth when someone sneezes or coughs my way.   Can you imagine if I caught the flu now after being released from quarantine? People would worry it was “The Virus.” What a panic that would be!  I didn’t escape the virus only to come down with the flu.

There have been questions in regard to the incubation period.  I have had several friends asking if the period had been extended from 14 to 24 days and suggested I stay inside longer.  I can guarantee you I have contacted the health department and asked these questions.  They are in constant contact with the CDC and they have been told the 14 day period is sufficient.

I am honestly doing my due diligence as a citizen and following all protocol and guidelines, even beyond the established quarantine period to ease the minds of people in Tulsa.

Finally, the last factor that determined my extra stay in my home are the messages I have received via facebook messenger. I imagine these people saw a story on one of the local news stations, or googled my name and took the time to look me up on facebook and sent me a message filled with questions of hate. I did not bother to respond and only deleted the messages.  

Am I letting this final factor bother me? 

I wouldn’t say I am staying home because of the ugliness, but I do understand the fear.  I lived it everyday for 4 weeks in China. The difference is I channeled these fears into something more positive and tried to help others rather than criticize or judge them. 

I understand people are scared and as humans, we often fear the unknown. However, this fear can manifest into other strong emotions, such a hate, but should not be directed toward people of any race.  The virus is the problem. 

How about turning this emotion into something positive to help and support people?  I have seen support beyond measure from my friends during this crazy time in my life.

My SKYPE APP is calling.

Who could that be?

As of right now, this minute, it is 6:00 p.m. on Friday night.

It is exactly one hour and twenty minutes after my release from the Tulsa Health Department. 

The only calls I receive from SKYPE right now are from the Tulsa Health Department.

 It is the Tulsa Health Department. 

My heart is jumping out of my chest right now!


If I only had a Crystal Ball

‘When will you return to China?’

“Do you have to go back?’

 I’m asked these questions every day.  The answer is ‘I don’t know.’  

Yes, eventually I will have to return.


 I assume.

Who knows!

I have recently checked flights from Tulsa to Beijing, and it looks like it is possible to return to at least the Beijing Airport.

There is a flight from Tulsa to Dallas to Los Angeles with American Airlines, then on to Tokyo with United Airlines and from Tokyo to Beijing by way of Air China.


There is also a flight from Tulsa to Chicago by way of American Airlines, Chicago to Seoul by way of Korean Air and Korean Air from Seoul to Beijing. 


My normal route is Tulsa to Dallas to Beijing with American Airlines. 

The State Department has recently issued a Level 2 warning for travel to both Japan and South Korea, which means they are urging caution to travelers to those countries.  

This is how the warnings began while I was in China.  There were warnings not to travel to Wuhan, Level 2. Over several weeks, the level heightened and is now a level 4 for traveling in China.

The Coronavirus has spiked recently in South Korea. As of this writing it appears 5 have died and 500 are infected. 

Japan was criticized for their handling of the quarantined cruise ship docked at a Japanese port. 

So if my only way back is through either Japan or Korea, would I really be asked to return to school?

A recent message from school stated:

We received a message from the BDA Social Development Bureau this morning:

  1. Any staff currently who are outside of Beijing should not return to Beijing without notice from the school.

2.   Under very special circumstances, should a staff member need to return to Beijing, he/she may only return to Beijing upon school and BDA Social Development’s Bureau’s  approval.

So, as of now, I cannot return to my apartment in Beijing without permission. For how long? No need to even think about it. There is no answer.

Will I now miss my son’s graduation in June? I already have the ticket. How would the quarantine work?  Do I need to cancel the flight? So many things to consider. Good thing I have all day to ponder these things, I guess.

If I only had a crystal ball. 

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