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Hives in the Time of Coronavirus

Starting to write is sort of scary. I write daily: progress notes, text messages, posts on social media, lists of things to do or buy at the grocery store, a note to my husband, and occasionally a journal entry. This is different. The audience is different. The purpose is different. I was a professional writer once upon a time: I was part of a grant writing team at a medical school. That was a lifetime ago and the experience did not leave me confident in my writing skills. Counseling school came next and gave those skills a lot of practice. It also restored some confidence in those skills.

The title for the blog came to me in the spring of 2020. It’s a play on the title of a novel I have not read, Love in the Time of Cholera by Gabriel Garcia Marquez, and I was inspired after my autoimmune body decided to show me another thing it could do: hives. They started as the statewide lockdown in Ohio began. My hives multiplied just like the number of Covid-19 cases.

There were other ideas for a title. Unfortunately, I did not write them down and cannot remember them. One surely had to do with the ramblings of a chronically ill person.

Ten months have passed since the hives started and the pandemic altered our lives. Both have taken things from me. If I think about things, though, I realize that they have given to me as well. Rest is the main thing. Boredom got me to start walking regularly. Knitting kept my hands busy, even if I was not able to continue with lessons. Luckily, neither the hives nor the pandemic has taken a life from me. My heart is heavy for the lives that the pandemic has taken.

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