The Case For Optimism

Posted by Emma May on

It's been two years we have been at this Corona Stuff.

No one likes it.

No, the politicians aren't trying to control you.
No, the doctors aren't trying to trick you.
It's a shitshow. People have died. More will die.
But it will end.

How do we know this? Because every pandemic in the past has ended. Even before we had the gift of modern medicine. Viruses like to survive and killing off hosts don't help much with survival. Making everyone just a little bit sick is a much better option for them. The move from pandemic to endemic is the natural course of things.

Today is Jan 1, 2022. The Omicron variant is ripping around the world with a velocity that is awe inducing. The gradual uptick of cases we saw in waves of the past is not the trend at the moment and it is fair to get a little bit freaked out when we see how quickly this new spiky little bastard gets around. Best efforts of the past aren't good enough. And the public is exhausted.

He is moving so fast and behaving so differently that everyone - the scientists, the doctors, the politicians and the public are struggling to learn more at wharp speed. While science is fast - good science takes a little bit more time. More peer reviewed studies, more evidence and more data.

But fuck all that, we want to know what the deal is NOW!

I find myself tired and drawn to the most optimistic data I can find. I want desperately to believe that the initial evidence of a more mild illness coming out of South Africa will hold true. I want to believe this will be short and sharp. That it will likely infect most of us and lead to the real beginning of the end of this brutal moment in time.

I try and push away the voices of more measured response.

-Sure it may be milder but the sheer number of cases will still overwhelm our hospitals and cause mass casualties.-

(hmmm, not listening...)

-South Africa has a much younger population than much of western Europe and North American - this will play out differently here...-

(but this wasn't the case in other waves...)

-Vaccinated people are well protected against Omi. But we still have way too many unvaxed who will clog up our hospitals....-

(making me ragey again....)

-Looks like hospitalizations for kids are on the rise.---

(are we sure they aren't just getting it in the hospital and they are there for other reasons...)

-If our kids can't get vaxxeed why aren't we pulling out all the stops to protect them?-


And so it goes. I look for hope but I know that this isn't over yet. I maintain my optimism because there is evidence things are changing for better. We have great vaccines, we have new treatments, we understand better how to minimize spread even though it is a giant pain in the ass and we are all going to moan endlessly about having to cancel the recital or conference or trip for the 3rd fucking time...
We are heading to a better place. Despite the challenges this variant is tossing at us we have the tools to do better and better.

I am more fluid now in my arrangements. I make plans. I book trips. I check the cancellation policies and will ripcord at the last minute but I'm not staying still. I am staying hopeful.

May this year bring a bit closer to reprieve. XO

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