Jill’s mid-October Reflections

It’s been a while since writing an entry for our Covid blog. I look back and can’t fathom where the time has gone. Ten months. How did whatever this is become the new normal? My family made it through the first round of online schooling; we made it through the summer – contending with packed campgrounds and a big family move, but otherwise didn’t do too much. A benefit for us was indeed the lack of commitments. I read more books and spent more time in my garden than I had in years.

But then came “back to school.” Everyone was conflicted about sending their kids back to school, and we were in the same boat. I refused to do any typical “back to school shopping” because no one knew what was going to happen in the next few weeks. My kids were back a matter of days when we got a letter from the school Principal saying that there had been a confirmed positive case of COVID at the school. Wow. The school’s Facebook page for parents was a flurry of commotion. My anxiety (which had been on the rise already) was back in full force. What do we do? Will we get a call from the Durham Region Health Department? Only those close to the person with a positive case are deemed high risk and contacted. It was around this time that I remember hearing on the radio that Durham Region hadn’t submitted its number of new case numbers to the media. Shortly after, everyone found out that was because there had been a mistake in the lab.

On September 23, 2020, Global News reported that “34 people” in Durham Region “were given incorrect positive COVID-19 results due to an error by Sick Kids Hospital.” What a relief. The supposed positive case at my kids’ school was negative after all.

Fast forward almost one month, and 2020 tested our strength/sanity/fears again. A day after I experienced my first (and so far only, thankfully) COVID test, we learned that there was a true positive case at the school – in my daughter’s and nephew’s class on top of everything. Now what? Now there were two out of four of us in the family that needed to isolate until tests results came back.

The staff and organization at Lakeridge Health, where I had my COVID test, were phenomenal. I am sure that there are days where tensions are high but certainly not when I was there. The professionalism of the nursing staff and security staff was top notch.

Have you had a COVID test yet? Boy, was I anxious. “No big deal.” That’s what everyone said. “It feels like water up your nose.” To me it certainly didn’t feel like that! I can’t really describe what it was like, but definitely not that. It didn’t hurt, but it was definitely uncomfortable. It helps to think that there are so many more professionals and front line workers that need to be tested a lot more frequently, and what you’re going through is so trivial compared to that.

My daughter had her COVID test at the school. They set up a mobile testing centre for the children in the class affected in an unused portable on the school premises – incidentally the same portable the class just left for a new classroom inside the school. At least the setting was familiar for them? This is one of the first steps/precautions the school took to mitigate any further exposure to staff and students. She also saw a return to online learning, for her class that was isolating.

Edit: As I finished writing this blog post, I learned that my COVID test was negative!


Accessed October 19, 2020

Published by Oshawa Museum

Since 1957, the Oshawa Museum has been acquiring and preserving for the public, records that trace Oshawa's rich history from its earliest settlement. Our collection includes historical information on Oshawa, its families, businesses, social organizations and many other areas of interest. Included in the collection are photographs, documents, scrapbooks and other Oshawa related memorabilia. In addition to making Oshawa's historical inforamtion available, our staff also provides lectures, presentations, conservation work and research assistance.

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