Being away from home at college doesn’t prepare you for the risk and precautions that must be taken due to COVID-19. With a once in a lifetime virus such as COVID-19, people’s lives and daily lifestyles have been changed due to the virus. I came home from Cabrini to one of the biggest age groups affected by the virus, the elderly.
Abe Latimer is a 78-year-old man who goes through dialysis treatment 3 times a week. However, if you ask him, he is living his best life.
“I am 78 years young,” Abe Latimer said. “This is the first time in my life I experienced anything like this and probably everybody on this earth as well. Am I scared? Yes, but I won’t let that stop me from enjoying my life. I’m not afraid to go to the store and must get treatment at least three times a week. There are just certain things that must be done, but now me and my family must take extra precautions for my safety and theirs as well.”
Abe was a former Trenton Police officer, traveled to Myrtle Beach for golf tournaments, and was in the service during his youth years. He can even ride a bike backwards. You could say he’s a man with many talents, but during these times he is well aware of the statistics of his survival rate and the amount of safety measures that must be taken to ensure his life.
The country has taken measures into their own hand by issuing a stay at home order, but everyday instances such as going to the grocery store puts my grandfather at risk of contracting the virus. I take this into mind with every action I do. Multiple masks are placed near the exits of our house and it is my responsibility to disinfect them every morning. My mother and I must wash our hands at least five times more than usual to prevent contamination. However, this isn’t the biggest fault.
The elderly are most vulnerable to COVID-19 because of a lower immune system. Also, people with ongoing health problems are even more likely to contract the virus. This is where my grandfather fits it. He must go to dialysis treatment three times a week and be around a large crowd while there. Yes, measures have been taken to protect him such as checking his temperature every time he goes and not allowing others to come into the facility anymore. My family still worries about his safety.
Cheryl Fisher, a middle-aged woman, and daughter to Abe have her hand full in taking care of her father.
“He’s stubborn,” Cheryl said. “I tell him to be careful and that his grandson will go to the store for him, but he insists on going on his own. However, I can’t get the sight of my head that one slip up could cause me to lose my father. He has been like this since I was a kid, so it’s kind of hard to convince him to let us help him.”
Cheryl speaks for her older two siblings as they feel the same way about their father. Multiple safety measures are being repeated to ensure his health and safety, but with the virus getting more deadly as the days go on; nobody is prepared for the outcome.