Call No. 1527

Thursday, May 7, 2020 at 11:05:16 PM EDT

Hi. I’m calling from Rochester, New York. That’s far, far upstate in Western New York.

Let’s see. I’m in my study. I’m actually just getting ready to teach my very last online class, and I’ve actually asked the class to think about what is the sound of a pandemic, or what is the sound of this pandemic, or what does the sound of your pandemic? And one of the assignments I gave them was to reflect on this question and then contribute to some archives about the current pandemic. So this is my, one of my contributions.

It’s beautiful outside. Spring is popping here. It’s early May. Everything is green and lush. It’s gray and rainy and actually getting a little cold. We even had snow last week, but the spring is really coming and it’s so necessary and so hopeful.

My study itself is actually in total disarray because we’ve had an invasion of carpenter ants, I believe. So, I’ve been turning over everything. There’s a trunk up on its side. There’s a guest bed in here, that’s, all the blankets are taken off, because I’ve been trying to kill lots of carpenter ants, which has been deeply ironic, cause it feels like some kind of message about, how you can’t keep the chaos out, no matter how hard you try. And you can’t keep nature out either.

I’m looking forward to hearing what my students have to say about the sound of the pandemic. They are spread across the United States and the world. Some are still here in Rochester, some are in China. And I just know that the experience has played out really differently for each of them.

I’ve been really grateful to be here with my husband and my daughter, to be gardening, to have access to outdoor space, to not be stuck in a tiny, small space and maybe not even to be in a place where the lockdown is really harsh. So yesterday we planted a Witch Hazel tree, a cherry tree and asparagus, and I don’t know if there’s anything that’s more helpful or more future oriented than planting new plants. I’m really excited to see those live and thrive and evolve in the years to come. Thanks.


Call No. 1318

Tuesday, April 14, 2020 at 4:41:10 PM EDT

Hello. I am calling in from Chicago today. I’m in my high school bedroom. This is probably the most amount of time that I’ve spent in my high school bedroom since I graduated high school five years ago. But at this point, I’m thankful that it hasn’t been covered it into an exercise room. Because I live alone, so I decided to socially distance with my family. So it’s been, it’s been nice.

Something that’s happened recently is, I found out that an ex partner of mine was dating somebody new and didn’t tell me, and we were still talking. And so I found that out during quarantine, which, you know, it’s never a convenient time to experience heartbreak, but it’s an extremely interesting time to experience heartbreak now, because I find that while I’m heartbroken, I also feel guilt for feeling heartbreak. Because really my heart should be breaking for everybody else around the world whose jobs are disappearing and you know, who are looking down the neck of what seems to be a long amount of time of uncertainty. And really, I’m very fortunate and very lucky, because I still have my job, because I have a family that I can surround myself with, that, you know, I have so many, so many blessings.

So, you know, a lot of times when people experience heartbreak, they try to distract themselves. They surround themselves with friends and activities. And I think what makes this harder is that I’m just still my high school bedroom and I will be for a while. But at least I have a bedroom.

Anyway, sending love to anybody who needs it. I know we will get through. Bye.


Call No. 1002

Sunday, April 12, 2020 at 5:43:56 PM EDT

Hi, I’m calling from Jersey City, New Jersey. One thing that has been really weird lately is, I’m not a doctor, but my husband is, and he’s about to finish his ICU fellowship training.

So this sort of came at a really interesting time. And when he’s not doing critical care shifts at the hospital, he’s been on all these conference calls with his co-fellows and his department, and I’ve had to go into the other room because it just feels so close to have all of the details about how many people are in the ICU and how many vents they have and how many nurses they have. And there’s just so many details that are hard to hear constantly.

But one thing that has given me hope is that every now and then I hear them all laughing. And it’s not about the situation of course, but they just find a way to make each other laugh and smile. And it just seems like the right people are in that profession, because they feel so motivated to keep going and go to work. And despite all of the numbers of the facts and the shortages they don’t feel at all dissuaded from doing what they need to do. So, that part makes me feel really grateful.


Call No. 665

Saturday, April 11, 2020 at 10:30:45 PM EDT

Hi. I’m calling from New York, and I just wanted to share how I was feeling this week. And I think it’s been tough for some reason. And, I was thinking about it and was thinking why it’s more difficult than other weeks of this. And I think, that it’s because it’s been a really a while, and for me, you know, this whole situation was feeling temporary.

And right now, it’s been already a while. And to me, all the temporary things after they last for a while, they become really annoying. Everything that’s temporary to me, I don’t know, adds somehow to, like, my anxiety and things like that. Like, if it’s not resolved after a while, if it’s been long enough the temporary things, feel like they become the permanent things.

So I think that’s why I’ve been feeling more anxious about the situation. Yeah. That’s my conclusion. Thank you. And at the same time, I think it’s really scary to think that this is the new normal, which is like the thing new reality. Like, it’s really hard to think about it, that this can be, you know, our future for a while. But at the same time, I’m thinking maybe it can be really freeing as well if I just accept the fact that this is how things are going to be in the future too.

So, yeah. Okay. Anyway, I need to go. Thank you so much. Thanks.