Karen Bune

After my mom's death, I felt profound grief coupled with isolation. Suddenly my personal sphere was off limits.
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Karen Bune is an adjunct professor at Marymount University.

Most, if not all of us, will remember 2020 as a challenging year. Prior to the pandemic, mine was already off to a bad start. My mother passed away on January 18 (non-Covid). We were extremely close, and she was my rock.

Shortly after her death, a biopsy of my foot and leg came back positive for precancerous melanoma cells. I was scheduled for surgery in mid-March.

Then I got sick (non-Covid) at the end of February, and my surgery was postponed until early April. The surgery was successful and all of the precancerous cells were removed. In the midst of all this, along came Covid-19.

The profound grief over my mother’s death left me feeling upside down. With each tumbling event that followed, I felt even more topsy-turvy. The stay-at-home order, coupled with the vital need to remain safe while deeply grieving my loss, added to my feelings of isolation. Suddenly my personal sphere and society at large were off limits.

I knew after my mother’s death that I’d have to find a new normal. I knew it would take time. It felt personal.

Then talk of a “new normal” became the focus of national and international discourse. Suddenly the new normal I had yet to find got melded into the worldwide pot of everyone attempting to solve their own pieces of the pandemic puzzle.

Today I went to the cemetery with flowers to see the engraving on the monument that was just completed for my mom. Life will never be the same for any of us.

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Categories: Covid Chronicles