Woke up this morning obviously concerned about coping and alternative methods, anticipating either a "lockdown" or a "shelter in place" order from the governor, then decided I needed instead to focus on how to deal with being confined. I read a few articles online and thought I'd share them, and ask others what you have read online (or elsewhere, such as in magazines), and/or what your own coping methods are.

1. Communicating with family or friends in facilities that are locked down.

Window visits: this family created signs, called their grandfather and suggested he look out the window. I'm guessing this "made his day", to see his family outside, reaching out to him.

I'm thinking folks here could perhaps make arrangements by phone with staff to let residents/patients know that there will be some outdoor visitors, and to look out the window at a certain time.

I wouldn't come en masse as the cited family did though, and if more than one member could visit, they could stagger visits between morning and afternoon, giving the elder a twice a day "pick-me-up".

As to memory care, I'm not sure if this could work; I've never been in a MC hall and don't know if all the residents have windows.

And if there are Good Samaritans who want to visit, they too could get on the visitor's lists for specific times.

Perhaps the facility could set aside a few parking places for "special visitors."

2. For Catholics: An innovative priest is providing "drive-by" confessions.

For this priest, and parishioners, I just hope he has some good weather going forward and that there are no blizzards to interrupt this practice.

Anyone else read about unique coping methods? Please share!

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Sheltering in place will be easy for me..... I am an only child of very over protected parents, thus have had a lot of years of practice.

I can fill my time by shaking the family tree on And washing the curtains in my house which haven't seen the inside of a washing machine in many years :P
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pamzimmrrt Mar 2020
I was also thinking of washing my curtains.. freshen up the house since When I am not at work I am pretty much staying put also. Hubs is working on outside projects. Mom is hunkered down in the rec room ,, smoking,, so it will be a short lived "freshen",, but still..
For several years now, I have been about a step and a half away from being a recluse. So, overall - staying home isn’t an issue for me. Rainman is another story - poor guy is use to being out and about with his paid companions. Anyhoo...

I had an aunt who was a bonafide paranoid recluse - so occasionally I wonder about my mental health. Lol!

More, I think - it was a 20+ years career in retail management that pushed me beyond my limit for dealing with The General Public.

11 years ago we bought my dream house. A just the right size two bedroom sitting on a small bluff overlooking a lake, with a huge state park on the other side of the lake. The house was a bit of a “fixer-upper” and my parents dual health crash occurred prior to much of the fixing and as a result - I’ve become comfortable in its lack of fancy perfection.

Personally, I can sit for hours just looking out the window or sitting on the deck and watching nature and it’s wildlife. Except for the time I saw a Bald Eagle pluck a duck off the water, carry it to shore - and killed it it a fury of feathers... but I digress.

Ive been binge watching TV and movie franchises when I’m not elbow deep in Spring Cleaning.

If anyone has HBO - I highly recommend the series The Leftovers. It showed for three seasons so it’s not a huge commitment. It is hands down the best thing on film that I’ve ever seen.
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Shell38314 Mar 2020
I too can sit for hrs looking out at a lake and nature! Eagles do have to anyone? Sorry for the bad humor!
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Good afternoon all,

I recently told my daughter that I am often alone but never lonely because I interact with so many people throughout the day. Now, I am isolated from all the people I normally see, including my grandchildren! I miss faces! I have begun to Facetime people instead of calling and it is such a comfort!

I want to keep as normal a schedule as possible, so I have my prayer and Bible reading time every morning, clean and organize my house, prepare good meals, work in my garden, and have committed to do one spring-cleaning project daily. Who knows? Maybe I’ll pick up my dusty pain brushes!

No yoga classes for me now, but I can do yoga in my own home, and I walk or ride my bike in the neighborhood. Today, I got up like I usually do on Sunday and participated in Sunday school on Zoom, a group video conference app, then our church live-streamed the pastor and a few people singing and playing music. He suggested we do the things we usually do during a service, so there I was alone in the living room singing away and praising God! That too was comforting. It was a good sermon. I also have been reading and participating more on this forum. We are so blessed to have this!

I’ve started reaching out to people I know are alone - people I keep up with on FB, but don’t usually talk to. If I am lonely, they must be too! In a little while I will go to talk to my mother through the window at her nursing home.
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Maybe school kids who are stuck at home could help brighten the day of someone in a nursing home/facility by making and sending lots of cards that could be distributed to isolated patients and residents.
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GvMercyToParent Mar 2020
We can't do that at my parents' nursing facility. Germs. It's a nice gesture, but germs come from the household where the item was created, and then handled numerous times through the mailing process, or the hand delivery process.
I'm going to go to the window of my mom's room and call her on my cell. Right now there's too much snow, but maybe tomorrow I'll do that. The phone calls are confusing to her and the facility is having a hard time getting to the skype calls. They are short handed because two care givers have called in sick. Hopefully it is not covid 19 that they have. The facility sends the families photos of all the residents at the dinner tables. There are only 8 of them. They all seem to be doing fine so far.
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Thank you for posting this. As usual, GA, another great post. 👍🏻

These situations always bring out the best and worst in people. God knows this is bringing back the painful memories of Hurricane Katrina for us living here in New Orleans. Just seeing the national guard active in our city brings it all back in our minds, the devastation but also the love in our community that was shared.

We received enormous help from volunteering college students (some who chose to make New Orleans their permanent home due to getting to know our unique city, even in an unusual way) and churches of all faiths and denominations that fed us after we were allowed to enter the city and salvage what little we could, for many it meant nothing.

As I entered my childhood home with my nephew I was flooded with emotions. There was only one thing left hanging on the wall, my graduation photo. My godson quietly said to me, “You survived.” All of my mother’s photos were lying on the floor and scattered every which way, unrecognizable people in the photos, destroyed by 9 ft of water, ugly mold on everything.

Oh, my photo was just as ugly, covered in ugly mold but there was something interesting that my nephew (godson) felt as we stared at my photo that was still hanging on the wall. It was crooked. It was water damaged but I had hung on for dear life and made it!

It was a surreal experience that I shared with the grown man that I had held in my arms when I was only 16 as the priest baptized him as a tiny infant. I was so proud to be his godmother.

There was a woman with a crew driving down the street with sandwiches. No businesses were open. She was visiting the most devastated neighborhoods to feed us. I had no appetite. My friend, Mark across the street had no appetite but this church lady looked at me and said, “Honey, you are so thin you may blow away if you don’t eat!” My friend across the street laughed and said that I had always been a string bean! We took one of her sandwiches to make her happy. I couldn’t eat it though. I gave it away to another neighbor. This woman asked if I would take her phone number. I did. Many months later I felt a desire to call her. She was a remarkable woman. She was a woman who acted out her faith. She didn’t just talk. She walked the walk. She respected me and I certainly respected her. She never once tried to convert anyone or put down their faith.

You know, Katrina seems like a million years ago (2005) but during these times it feels like yesterday for many of us here.

We are a strong city. Many supported us. Thank you all. We had people in all 50 states helping us during and after our evacuation. I was in Texas with my friends that lovingly asked us to stay with them. Our animals that became lost from owners were adopted by people all over the country.

Humanity came together. I thank you for that. We made it. We survived. We rebuilt our city and our lives.

We will survive this too. We are strong. Show love to each other. Equally as important, let go of toxic relationships and cling onto those that truly matter.

Honor your feelings and don’t allow anyone to rob your joy. I don’t believe in grudges. I don’t believe in bitterness. I believe in survival. I believe in peace. I believe in helping those who want help, step away from those who don’t.

I believe in the power of forgiveness but I do not believe in allowing ourselves to be a doormat. I believe in balance and harmony. I believe love heals for those who invite healing in their hearts.

Thanks GA for sharing about the beautiful parts of my faith. Catholicism has many beautiful beliefs. Of course, we have flaws. All churches do because there are no perfect people. Anyway, please keep our archbishop here in New Orleans, (Gregory Aymond) in your thoughts and prayers. I saw on television today that he has tested positive for the virus. He is a lovely person and I am sad to hear this. He speaks from his heart. His homilies always inspire me.
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BlackHole Mar 2020
Thank you for sharing. I appreciate your reminder that this COVID-19 shutdown can be a trigger for those who have lived through prior societal upheavals. Biggest hugs to you. Go forth in kindness (you already are!). Paradoxical as it sounds, we will get through this isolation together.
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I love the “drive through” Confession! ❤️❤️❤️

If if I could be a little off subject: we went this morning to Walmart’s new shopping hours for seniors at 6 a.m. on Tuesdays. It was hilarious! It was a zoo, a peaceful and orderly zoo! I’ve never seen so many old people (me, my husband, and my sister included!!) in my life, which is probably an exaggeration. There was gridlock in certain areas where we came to a halt for a while. This is a new procedure, so Walmart wasn’t prepared for us, with a lot of shelves not stocked yet. I really feel for grocery store employees. They have extra work because of this virus. Then we drove to Kroger, and I saw the same people there as I saw at Walmart! The seniors were waiting for the doors to open at 7 a.m., a big crowd of them including me.

the funny thing is that last night I told my husband and sister that I wanted to go by myself early in the morning just to get in and out faster, but my sister said, “I want to go, too!”, and told me she would put on her roller skates to go faster, and my husband said, “You mean you don’t want me to drive you there?” I paused and thought, and then figured out everyone was telling me they needed to get out of the house! 😊 i had lots of help self-checking out at Walmart because of them!

I felt embarrassed shopping for big quantities, but our daughter had her seventh child last week and needed groceries. I explained this to the clerk looking over my items to see if I had exceeded the limits, and she lit up with a big smile and said, “Oh, they will have plenty of fruit!”

All in all, a bright spot in our day, plus I got to bring the groceries over and see the grandchildren and the new grand baby again.

Prayers for all who are suffering because of sickness, financial stresses, job problems, or other problems. My heart goes out to you. May God answer your deepest needs and help you. Last week I had caregiver burnout and depression, and God delivered me from it. Love and hugs to all of you!
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texasrdr22 Mar 2020
My significant other was at Costco for "senior shopping hour" this morning and was first in line. He said the line behind him snaked all the way around the building and that he had never seen older people move so fast as they did when they got into the store! No social distancing took place. Unfortunately, this Costco was out of lots of items like disinfectant wipes, hand sanitizer, beans, rice, pasta, etc. They did have tp and paper towels but you were limited to one package. My local grocery (and there is only one for this entire side of town!) can't seem to keep items stocked. Please, please, STOP HOARDING!
Thanks for sharing GardenArtist. Personally, I am doing small things such as I go for a walk in the neighborhood each morning and get fresh air and listen to the birds chirping. Oddly, I never even noticed so many birds here in the month of March before. I walk around my yard and look for buds starting to bloom. Been watching a bit of "on demand" movies more than normal and also limiting my viewing of news to 15 minutes per day and limiting my time on social media.
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I want to thank everyone who responded and shared thoughts.  I do want to respond to each of you, in part to explore suggestions you've made.   So, please don't think I was ignoring anyone after requesting your contributions. 

We went on lockdown/shelter in place or sort of a combination of that as of first thing today; I'm still getting used to that concept.   One thing I would have done to stock up on is get some yeast to make bread and rolls.

And the mail this morning brought a water bill with a notation that the action level for lead has been exceeded in my city.   I need to do some research and find out how to address this.

Thanks again, and back later to respond to your suggestions.
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The visit at the kitchen window at assisted living turned out to be quite hilarious. First they couldn't explain to my mom that she had to talk to me on the phone through the window because she kept trying to tell me where the door is and to come in. Finally they got her sit in a chair with the phone and then she couldn't figure out the cell phone they gave her. Then, being silly, she put her nose up to window and made silly faces. But I did get to tell her a few things going on with the family.
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NeedHelpWithMom Mar 2020
How sweet. Darling sense of humor to make faces.
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