• By Theodore Lewis

What about tomorrow?

Portland Maine--Last night one of our neighbor families got into a real loud fight. The husband was yelling, the children were crying, the wife was…and after about 15 minutes he began throwing things out onto the lawn.

We've not seen this behavior from them before last evening.

Subdivision driveways and apartment parking lots that empty out each weekday morning are now full.

Rents are due next week, and so many folks have lost their regular jobs as well as their backup gig economy jobs.

So far the grief cycle (denial, anger, depression, bargain, acceptance) for dealing with Covid-19 in the U.S. has been primarily in the denial stage. However, it's now quickly moving into the anger phase.

In some places like Maine, it's moving into the bargaining phase. Today Maine is posting signs on roads coming into the state stating that if you're traveling from a "hot spot" you must immediately quarantine for 14 days. In other words, tourists from New York please turn around.

Losing a job is one thing, contracting a deadly virus and succumbing to it is quite another.

This morning I watched a grieving woman in New York City tell the story of her 48 year old, full of life nurse manager brother who passed away yesterday after being a patient in his own ICU for 6 days. His last text to her was, “Can’t talk because I choke and can’t breath - I love you - going back to sleep.”

She told the story of his bravery and how he did not have the protective equipment he needed, but did not waiver from his commitment to his patients. Regardless of his circumstances, he answered the call.

This has caused me to think of all the nurses and other healthcare workers I know across the country, and I'll admit it, I'm scared! The potential causality loss of healthcare warriors to this powerful pandemic as they are going into combat with no weapons and in many cases inadequate protection, is frightening.

I have always been the optimistic type, believing and living the song of "Tomorrow," from the Broadway musical "Annie."

The sun will come out

Tomorrow

Bet your bottom dollar

That tomorrow

There'll be sun

The sun will come out

Tomorrow

So ya gotta hang on

'Til Tomorrow

Come what may

Tomorrow!

Tomorrow!

I love ya tomorrow!

You're always a day away!

The catapulting of this virus through the fabric of our society has been urging me to question tomorrow. The daily increasing cases, deaths, lack of equipment, and the lack of hospital beds are but a few thoughts contributing to my questioning tomorrow.

Everyday I find myself pulling an onion out of the fridge to make sure I can still smell.

Just hearing from a friend in Detroit that because of the patient surge and the shortage of ventilators there, some hospitals have had to chose which patients to allocate the vents to (the others will not survive). This did nothing to dissuade this urging.

Have also heard that the Covid-19 is now on board the aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt currently docked at Naval Base Guam. There are 5,000 sailors assigned aboard this mighty vessel! I think dearly of my healthcare friends at Guam Memorial Hospital and the Navy Hospital in Guam and their daunting task ahead!.

Fortunately though, I am providentially guided to the words of comfort we have for times like this in Matthew 6:34: "Therefore, do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for today is its own tomorrow.” ESV

My faith in tomorrow has been restored. We will get through this.

Tomorrow, you're always a day away!

Theodore Lewis is former CEO of Guam Memorial Hospital and has a healthcare consulting business based out of Portland, Maine. He is collecting stories about lessons learned in life and can be reached at theodorelewis@yahoo.com.

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