Terri Waldman, Social Worker

As a social worker, I have always been involved in supporting and advocating for others. With the onset of COVID-19, I have now dedicated my professional time to providing temporary placement for older adults with the virus and I have seen first hand the devastation that COVID-19 has on individuals and their loved ones. It is hard to let go, I am honored to be part of the solution, but it doesn’t make the daily impact any easier. Personally, I am grateful to have a supportive spouse and a home that has inside and outside space. I miss my social life and have found that work has become a social life of sorts. Sad, but true.

I do feel that I heal a little bit each time I help someone through their pain.

I lost my dad in April, I could not be with him when he passed in the TMC emergency room. The medical team at TMC was amazing and I am grateful for their compassion. However, for me this has been the hardest part of the pandemic. We got his body back to Michigan, but it was a crazy time. I could not go to his funeral and I will forever be sad about that. This experience has helped me empathize with families that I am now seeing at Harmony House.

It doesn’t take my sadness away, but I do feel that I heal a little bit each time I help someone through their pain. The emotional pain causes extreme fatigue and it is a daily thing. There are days when I can’t think because I have been in the thick of it hour after hour, day after day. I am emotionally and physically drained. What helps, therapy, my dog, meditation and my wife. I can still have gratitude and that is the beautiful piece of the human spirit that still remains for me.

When I see the public not following masking, physical distancing and other precautions to prevent the spread of COVID-19 I feel
annoyed and angry. I try to not say anything, but what I would say is please care about yourself. I am sure that this is not the only area that you don’t practice self care. It’s time to start!!!!

We are all together in this. We have seen the pain and devastation that COVID-19 causes, it’s time to support each other, wear masks, social distance and get vaccinated.