Let’s talk coronavirus

Posted by Amber Collie in Life After Paralysis on March 26, 2020 # COVID-19, Health

Empty Shopping AislesMight as well talk about the thing that is on most people’s minds these days. I’m sure I have the same information as the rest of you. In my city in Orange County, CA all schools, sports programs, many workplaces have shut down. No large group gatherings. We are advised to stay at home. This protects the spinal cord injury world, people with paralysis, who may have compromised lungs, and also others who are vulnerable.

When we first heard about coronavirus, hand sanitizer almost instantly disappeared. Water was next to go. Very soon after that you could not find a roll of toilet paper in my whole town. Within days dry goods such as beans, rice and pasta were missing from the stores. As of today, grocery stores have many completely empty isles. Took me about 2 hours to shop, picking through what was left. I was told there have been lines outside and around the building each morning at opening time.

My adult son Zack who is a C-4 quad and his fiancé work at Disneyland resort. Being a large attraction to so many, Disney has closed officially today March 16, 2020. The theme parks have only closed 3 times in the parks 65-year history. In each case it’s been forced to shut down by events beyond their control. On Nov. 23, 1963 a national day of mourning in honor of late president John F. Kennedy. The parks were also closed after the terrorist attacks on Tuesday Sept. 11, 2001 and now for the worldwide coronavirus protection and not just 1 day but to be determined, this has never happened before.

I stopped at my local library to stock up on material, if I was going to be confined to my home for a while. You could go in get books & checkout, but no computer uses or sitting down, and they made that pretty clear when not a chair was insight.

Hopefully, everyone has shopped for food, water and necessities by now. I wanted to add a few items that could be useful in the paralyzed world.

  • Refill all prescription & get any over the counter medications
  • Extra SCI medical supplies (leg bags, condom catheters, gloves, suppositories etc.)
  • Humidifier (good for lungs)
  • Air purifier
  • Disinfectant spray

As we have heard wash hands, use hand sanitizer, wipe down counter tops, door handles, light switches. Avoid crowded places and give people their space.

Since we are to be at home, look at it as a time to do those things you have been putting off. Make a to do list…

Ask your caregiver to help you sort your closet, piles, junk drawers. Organize things.

You have the gift of time. Play games (Headbands & Trivia are good games for Quads)

Take this opportunity to email or facetime a friend. Listen to upbeat music or interesting podcasts, watch movies, binge watch Netflix. Make a grateful list, find new goals, create a vision board. Look up new recipes, research something of interest, get information on wheelchair friendly vacations, go outside, walk the dog. Limit your tv news. It feels good to accomplish stuff. Enjoy family time and of course simply just relax! This kind of thing seems to bring out the best and the worst in people. It can highlight what is really important and what is petty.

We are literally making history and we really are ALL in this together. Stay well.

About Amber Collie
My life has had many parts, I could write a book just on that section but let's fast forward to when I married Adron Collie. Two weeks after turning 20 (yes, very young!) I had Zackery at age 22, Levi at 24, six years later Kaden, and 18 months after that daughter Laila, making me a busy mother of four. At that time, I also ran a photography business. The year Zack was injured I had a child in Preschool, Elementary, Jr. High and High School. Four kids in four schools! I thought I was so busy, just getting their drop off and pick up times correct was a challenge. I have to laugh now thinking back on that because little did I know my life was just about to turn upside down.

The National Paralysis Resource Center website is supported by the Administration for Community Living (ACL), U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) as part of a financial assistance award totaling $8,700,000 with 100 percent funding by ACL/HHS. The contents are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the official views of, nor an endorsement, by ACL/HHS, or the U.S. Government.