“This is not prison,” she said. “I know that. But, just a little bit, just occasionally, and if I’m feeling down, it does seem . . .”
She paused, sighed, and then added, “. . . like I’m stuck in jail.”
I remember the call from back in April, wanting to see how she was getting along a month after her husband had died. He had been my hospice’s patient since the beginning of the year. From just after Christmas to nearly the start of spring, the husband (and father of three) had gone from taking walks with his family to bedbound. His wife of over sixty years, the woman I called, held his hand when he took his last breath.
And then she went to “jail.” The Covid-19 pandemic, in the final weeks of his life, was all over the news. If he had died a week later, she may not have been by his side.
“We were lucky,” she said, not sounding lucky.
A few years back, they had moved into a “senior citizens’ joint” (her husband’s words). Their small apartment was adequate. The twice-a-day meals were nourishing. The facility staff was friendly.
Then, shelter-in-place. Read More →by