To Mask or not To Mask?
That’s not a question anymore.
A mask is a major mitigation to the marauding COVID-19.
Alas, for me, it’s not as simple as hooking a string behind my ear.
The leadership of my Assisted Living Facility has taken the lead to protect us old folks – all of whom are in the Dangerous Age category. Even worse, many of us have already suffered the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune - we are in the critical Underlying Conditions category. – CHF and/or COPD
Therefore, we residents have been advised to wear a mask when we leave the isolation of our room. I’m for that. But many residents don’t adhere to the recommendation. That word – recommend - is the reason, I think, for the lack of adherents to the proclamation – it’s a recommendation, not you have to. But It’s a good idea to do it.
Aye, there’s the rub, as the Danish prince who gave himself the binary option sadly observed.
It’s a hard decision to make whether or not to tell to wear a mask, older adults who have all the pains and creaky bones of aging and enough ADLs to be eligible to live in an ALF.
I’m lucky I can wear a mask to fit my moods - a yellow or a blue lightweight mask which I wear to dental/medical appointments; a heavyweight hospital mask; a camouflage mask; and a homemade three-fold tie dye mask, which matches my tie dye T shirts. I mask in style.
I wear a mask diligently; most other residents don’t seem to. When I go to the ALF exercise class, I feel like the Lone Ranger. I wear one of my collection when I visit the lobby. I’m masked when I go out doors to absorb Vitamin D and read – again I’m the solitary masker, except for my former table mate, Horace. His mask, like my tie-dye, was made by his daughter. We’re the only residents who are so donned – except for the smokers. Now that has to be hard to manage.
But there is flaccidity in the rigor of my rigueur.
Although I leave the building for the salubrious effects of the sun, equally important to me is the refreshment of the fresh air. How can I suck in the N, the O2, the Ar, and the CO2, with a mask inhibiting the sniffing power of my nose?
If I’m masked, i miss the smell of fresh cut grass. I miss the fruity fragrance of roses. The wispy whiff of azaleas. The tantalizing trailing of lilacs. The petiole petals of a peony.
The bouquet of fabulous fragrances is barricaded by my mask.
To Mask or not To Mask. I guess that’s a valid question after all.
Dick Weinman is and AARP volunteer and our Assisted Living Guru. He writes this blog as part of his Thin Edge of Dignity Series.
To Mask, or Not to Mask!
By Dick Weinman , August 30, 2020 10:35 AM
To Mask or not To Mask?