COVID-19: Wake Up!


Yeah. The agency thing about coffee every week asked me the same question. I’ll give you a different answer in the next several days to a week or so. We’re going to continue to see things go up. It’s really hard at the beginning. I think, just to realize how contagious this is really wasn’t. There are many things about this virus that we don’t understand. There’s more contagious virus, fear. You know what? It really occurred to me. Why, why


We’re so afraid of the coronavirus? It’s because it’s invisible. We have no idea where it is. We have no idea


It has attached itself to


No, just that I slated room and praying to God, please help me through this so I can return to it. I didn’t know if I was going to make it out. And I didn’t know if I’d had done everything I wanted to do. Every time something went away, something else,


This is not a financial situation. It’s not a social situation. It’s not anything other than a war and a fight for our lives. And what you need to do people is you need to come out on the other side. And then we both figure out what gets going on. It was called 12 weeks later, who knows a lot more than that.


So, you know, a lot of people ask me where I got COVID from. If I know I say I got it from New York. So it began just living, living, and breathing along with 8.5 million people.


Is it early December that something’s going on again, to realize that like most epidemics they don’t tend to, you can find this virus is spreading very quickly because as the name says, it’s a novel coronavirus. So none of us have immunity. At first. I wasn’t ill. I just was tired.


Two weeks after that, I now knew that I had it, the covered virus for me in my instance, I personally did not think I would get COVID ever. I didn’t think I’d go because in my mind I go, but I would be immediately dead just by the same words to be dead. The highest fatality rate is for those aged 80 and over, I woke up and had the scariest symptoms of my life, which was just tightness in my chest and heaviness. For me, it felt as if someone were sitting, someone heavy were sitting on my chest and they were covering my mouth with a wet rag that was hot. And I really couldn’t get a good breath unless I was on all fours. I quickly discover I had never felt pain in my chest or back. I was always like that. Something that all people will feel at some point of their lives, but I’m not old, but it was terrible really hurt before I could knock it out of bed. I couldn’t walk four feet to bathroom without oxygen and help.


When Karen started getting stick, she was just not doing well at all. This was deteriorating, you know, right before our eyes, she said, just take me to the hospital. And I knew at that point, he said, well, this is, this is the beginning of the end.


And in the middle of this the family that she lived with started freaking, and they said, we adore this girl, but we can’t have this in our house right now. So in between all this, we also had to move a very sick person.


They basically stopped me at the door and said, I was not allowed to go in because of the isolation issues. And I had to leave her there. And I had no idea what to do, what to say.


The doctor walk in goggles, face mask, face shield, two gowns. You realize that’s to protect her from you. I really was frightened. I did not want her going to the hospital. At that time, the hospitals were insane. I was terrified that if she went there in her weakened state, that we would lose her. And that’s a phone call to her mother and Columbia. I was not willing to make a sick as I was. I’ll never forget this. Do you want to be intubated? And I remember thinking, why are they asking me? I’m so ill just do what you need to do, but it didn’t in my eyes and say, yes, I knew it. Wasn’t my only chance for survival.


It was, it was a struggle. It was a lot of worry, a lot of anxiety going on here in the household because, you know, we didn’t know whether she was ever coming back here. People think that it’s just going to be the elderly or it’s just going to be people with preexisting conditions. I know a lot of people who are young and healthy that have succumb to this disease,


You know, I’m 33 years old. I’m a runner, no history of asthma, no preexisting conditions. And it just, it just really hit me hard. I remember I would tell Mary and son every night that he would keep me company, man, I’m going to die. I’m not going to see my mom anymore. I’m going to die. I can’t describe the fear. Absolute terror of going to bed every night and saying, please come back, please don’t die. Please don’t die.


A lot of my patients know they’re healthy. They never saw their vulnerability. And boy, they were introduced to the mortality. They got introduced to it the hard way.


It was really a scary experience. And the worst part is that you have to go through that alone to be isolated and alone with no physical contact and know that there’s not someone in another room when you yelled help that somehow you’re gonna have to get yourself to a piece of equipment.


You’re either physically isolated, emotionally isolated, and told you can’t be around people for weeks on end. This wasn’t a five day. Many patients, I would say 14 days was typically where people were basically like transmitters open, either opening a door and shoving food on the door. And they were Iceland. So there’s a tremendous anxiety component that we’ve been identifying with these patients. We didn’t even get to say BIDA. Couldn’t MIRI. Give her like the boost of morale to say, Hey, you know, you’re going to come out of this. We need you to come out of this. Like there was nothing, you go through an experience like that. You come down saying, I’m so grateful for the life. How can I be the best person I can be? And the way that I can do that is by going back to work and helping other people,


You go through something like this yourself firsthand. It really does change your perspective. It just, it makes you notice that there’s so much you take for granted. Hopefully it makes me kinder, not just to myself, but to others.


I would say you can survive. You can’t keep that attitude until something happens that you canceled.


Just the empathy of knowing how sick you can get and how important it is that as we talk about reopening the country, we also take a real moment as a nation to pause and give respect and mourn goes, we’ve lost. And those who are still,


We hear these numbers and we hear these statistics. And unless it’s affected you personally, I don’t think it registers to people that these are individual human lives that we’re talking about to the world. You may be one person, but to one person, you may be the world. I know there’s one thing that I can say that my mom wouldn’t have taught me or told me now would be value. Your parents value the time you have with people, because you just never know when they’re going to be taken away from you. Cherish those moments, those happy moments. And that’s how I want to remember my mom.


And this is where I want to say the healthcare providers were amazing. They were there for me. The nurses, the nurses AIDS give me a floor in the restaurant. I have a ton of friends who are EMT is they are sleeping in their cars outside of the station because they don’t want to potentially risk their families. These frontline people who have put their lives on the line to support you under the most adverse conditions. But they’re doing the best they can all the time. But you know, doctors and nurses are known for their ingenuity, but right now they’re facing unprecedented pressure in a crush of patients, no matter what, I still love my job. And they do everything in my power to save lives.


Healthcare work is tough, come down and you’re going home with these stories and has to live. My best friend was a fireman who died in the world trade center. And if you said to him, Oh, you’re a hero. He would say, nah, I’m just doing my job. And that in itself is what makes you guys so heroic because you don’t do it for the credit or the fame or the adulation of the crowd. You do it because it comes from the heart. A level of sacrifice is just staggering. I don’t know how we can ever repay that. We have a lot of heroes.


The first part pandemic was a fear of getting in the middle of the pandemic was surviving it. And now it’s like, Oh my God, what if I just go through the questions about people who are now home recovering what’s the path forward. And I would begin with cautious optimism depending upon the person. The recovery from Kobe is going to be like a tail of a million different cities. We’re finding that some patients, they just go on their Merry way, but for some other patients Cove, it’s going to carry a multidisciplinary health burden with it. That’s going to require medical care, nursing care, psychosocial care, because this is very emotionally traumatic. I can tell you, I’m looking at some 12 week cats games that radiograph me do not look like they’re going to come back. Some of these x-rays look like fibrotic, scarred lungs and his lungs are not coming back. Then that’s going to be a whole new generation. And that story has to be told


Here in New York, I’m thinking about what can we do to not just harden infrastructure in our hospitals, but also what are you going to do for the patients who like Gabby and myself have moderate Kobe courses, which can frankly turn far deadlier very quickly. It’s really not enough to say to Americans, just stay home. You should be telling them, get an oximeter, check your oxygen. Is there a community health center where they can go just down the street to make sure they’re monitored?


I will tell you everybody. I talked to on the phone, I know had Kobe, we didn’t get tested at the highway epidemic. Nobody got things. So getting antibody testing on a population like you would see that talk about hurting anybody, but we haven’t tested the herd, the herd, maybe 10%. Then the herd, maybe 30, 40%


Here in New York. Not only do we have high numbers in general, but just knowing that black and Hispanic communities have been hit the hardest really thinking about how to protect them. One way. For example, I really think is to get more PPE, to essential workers, not just medical. So thinking about the next wave, hopefully it doesn’t come, but in case it does, we need to make sure that it’s janitors borders, not just doctors and nurses.


So now we’re unraveling rapidly processes. We put in doing the places at the same time, building new processes take care of a whole new host of commercials are going to be modeled almost after the world trade center. We had a single event when the world trade center, and then there was 20 years of health implications. Follow rehabs will be more important than me.


There are still thousands of people dying from COVID every day we’re seeing numbers rise States continue to choose restrictions. And as States and locations start to reopen and say to you yet safe, go back to work. You have to ask yourself, what are the motives? Why are these people telling me it’s safe? When for months they told me it was unsafe or their reasons political or their reasons financial or their reasons to power related. Trust yourself. If something doesn’t sound right, if your gut is telling you something’s wrong, it probably is. People have this idea like it’s over, but keep in mind that we have done nothing to kill the virus. Rhona virus has a much longer attention span than human. So coronavirus isn’t getting tired. COVID-19 is waiting to see what’s next. So for those of you that don’t think this is real. I hope you never find out from her.


Just how I just want people to be said, that’s all. And until there’s a vaccination, we won’t be truly safe.


We expect to see more cases. We expect to see more hospitalizations and we expect to see more deaths, unfortunately, but how do we prevent a complete relapse? How do we prevent a complete, separate way from what I see, it’s going to be very difficult, but there are things you can do to make sure that you optimize your chances. There’s something called universal precautions and universal precautions have to do with the idea that we assume that everybody is a potential carrier. We don’t look at somebody and say, they look healthy. You don’t look at somebody and say, they have big muscles. We take universal precautions. Meaning we wear a mask. We protect our eyes. We protect our face. We protect our hands. We wash our hands frequent. We avoid big crowds. We avoid close contact and these things make a big difference. So I want to state very clearly that these precautionary measures will only take us so far without really asking yourself, what did we do? What did we do to contribute? I can assure you, this is not going to be the last pandemic we face. I want to share a piece with you. It hits the nail on the head. I think puts a lot of things in great perspective for us. We fell asleep in one world and woke up in another. Suddenly Disney is out of its magic. Paris is no longer romantic and New York doesn’t stand up.


The Chinese wall is no longer a fortress and Mecca, empty hubs and kisses suddenly become weapons and not visiting parents and friends. It comes in an act of love. Suddenly you realize that power, beauty and money are worthless and cannot give you oxygen fighting. The world continues its life and it is beautiful. It only puts humans in cages. I think it’s sending us a message. You are not necessarily air or water and sky are fine without you. When you come back, remember that you were my guests, not my masters. I ask you all to remember it’s the earth and all of its in Habitudes were here long before us animals, forests, oceans have all been here long before us living in a harmonious balance for millions of years.


Most, if not all infectious diseases, it won’t be causes you not. That means that they started out in jump to humans. We can socially distance, lower stress exercise all the way, but as long as we force the animals to live in the exact opposite condition, we are not safe. As long as we chopped down or as great far as allude our oceans with built and continue to force species out of their native habit. Humans, we must give up this insane notion that the earth was your personal mortgage [inaudible] earth is giving us plenty of signal, how much louder as we rise from the ashes of this pandemic. I have only one hope is that we can put all of our differences aside. Think about it. Our differences hail in comparison to our similarities. We all cry. When a family member dies, we all strive to live by each other’s happiness. Each other’s misery. My hope would be that we can look beyond borders on the color of our skin or religious allegiances together once. And for all you can learn. My hope is that we can come away from this smarter, stronger, and better for future generations. And the way that we do that, we opt to follow the science opt to follow humans, fulfill our role as stewards and every living being today is June 22nd, 2020, nearly 500,000 people have lost their lives to COVID. Let us honor this loss and let us honor their lives in the way that we live our lives from this day forward. [inaudible].