Calling Out COVID


Hey, COVID. I’ve had enough of you, buddy. I’m officially calling you out, for the sake of humanity in general. As Gwen Stefani sang, “That’s right, Dude, meet me at the bleachers. No principals, no student teachers.” It’s on.

With 2021 looming, COVID-19 has long overstayed its welcome.

I’m sick of you, COVID. You have singlehandedly annihilated any chance of getting together with loved ones over the holiday season. Oh, we could get together, mind you. However, we run the risk of running into you. While you lurk in the corners of God knows what, we decide that it’s safer to cancel the holidays. After all, there will be others, right? You breathe menacingly from under your rock, “Not necessarily.” Thanks. I’ll be sure to take a swipe at your gargantuan nose before it’s all over.

I’m sick of all the new things I must do to keep myself and my husband safe from you, COVID. The mask-wearing is the least of my problems, to be honest. I actually like them. I’m tired of having to set down a blanket to quarantine mail and packages and disinfect them until they are safe to touch. I’m sick of having to wipe down every blasted item that I bring in from Target or ShopRite or Trader Joe’s, just so I don’t possibly infect myself or my husband. I’m sick of having to spray down clothing and shoes AND MY DOG because I’ve just been outdoors and I don’t know if anyone else is taking the same precautions. I’ve always washed my hands well, but since you came to town, I scrubbed my hands so much that they look like the first time I started to scrub with Hibiclens in the hospital—red and angry. I’m tired of explaining to others that both my husband and I are at high risk for contracting you and I’m tired of telling my elderly mother that I cannot come into her house, even if she’s the most pristine housekeeper, because I’m trying to keep all of us safe. I want you to know that, as a registered nurse, I have taken enough infection control courses to make me understand what you are and how I must contend with you. I’ve studied enough virology to know the things I should and should not be doing, lest there be someone out there who scoffs at the lengths I will go through to keep my family safe from your clutches.

Most of all, I am sick of the constant barraging by television news stations, TV shows and commercials alike. We all realize that it is now a “new normal,” where donning a mask to avoid catching you is as important as avoiding fats to prevent heart disease. It’s like overkill, though. We don’t need to constantly hear about you, you narcissistic virus. We aren’t going to forget you or the hundreds of thousands that you took with you. We’re trying to stay as far away from you as possible and we’re doing everything we can to make sure we stay safe. Those who are slacking are the ones who are playing with you like you’re a figurative hot potato. Those are the ones who need to be reminded, not the rest of us who are following the rules.

I’m sure you really don’t care, COVID, that I just had to break my daughter’s heart and tell her that for her own safety, I could not host Thanksgiving. I have hosted this holiday for as long as my husband and I have lived in Hicksville. I plan to avoid the dining room all damned day, because it would normally be filled with family. You really screwed us, COVID. I cannot even begin to tell you how much I really hate you.

I’ve had to tell my elderly mother that I cannot come to her home for our traditional Italian Christmas Eve with the rest of the family. Thankfully, Mom won’t be alone because she lives with my sister, her husband and my nephew and niece. However, I won’t be at the table this year. Neither will my husband, our daughter, our daughter’s boyfriend or my brother-in-law and sister-in-law. You messed up so badly, COVID. You should have crawled back under your stupid rock and died there.

I understand that everyone is looking for creative ways to “be together” this year, that it’s happening all over the planet, that everyone has to accommodate to the new normal. The saddest part of this is that Life holds no guarantees about who will surround our holiday tables next year. You took that into consideration and ran with it, COVID. I am going to kick your sorry butt into the next lifetime. I don’t know how or when but do yourself a favor and don’t turn your back, ‘Rona.

You think you beat us, COVID. You think you made us sad and depressed, and some of us legitimately are feeling the pains of mental, financial and emotional struggle. But I’ve got news for you, buddy. We’re humans. We’re freaking resilient. And we’re going to beat you back into the dirt from which you crawled. You hear me, COVID? Your days are numbered. For the record, you just picked on the wrong species.

Patty Servidio is an Anton Media Group columnist.

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