Covid and its stories – 09/22/2022 – Claudia Costin

Covid and its stories – 09/22/2022 – Claudia Costin
Covid and its stories – 09/22/2022 – Claudia Costin

I resume the column after a week away, given the sad loss of my husband, Nabuco Barcelos, whom I honor in the article I write today (as I do for those who also lost their lives to Covid). I try to do here, therefore, already apologizing for the personal tone, a brief balance not of the historical period, but of these two and a half years of life in abeyance.

The year 2020 began, for us, with the still uncertain information that an epidemic of planetary proportions could reach Brazil, which led some to sarcastically try to ridicule the press, attacked as sensationalist and irresponsible. Nabuco and I already suspected that the problem would be serious, because the world was much more connected than in previous similar episodes.

But little did we know about everything that was going to happen. We chose to return for a while to São Paulo, where we would have a better structure to isolate ourselves if necessary. And it was. Not just for a couple of months as we had initially imagined, but for two years and a little more. As we joked, a couple who survive long isolation have a solid, loving relationship. We passed the test…

The first effort was how to understand the context. I was already an avid reader of literary books and found myself reading works such as “The Plague”, by Camus, and the “Diary of the Year of the Plague”, by Daniel Defoe, as well as other non-fiction ones, such as “The Great Influenza”, by John Barry, about the 1918 flu, wrongly called the Spanish flu.

I started working from home, which was not very difficult for me in my activities such as lectures, research, mentoring municipal and state education secretaries, and in classes at Fundação Getúlio Vargas and at the Harvard School of Education. We learned, like many couples, to adapt together, Nabuco and I, to a very different routine from the one we had before.

We had to deal with pain. The sad discovery of cancer, the more intense isolation, including from his grandchildren, and, despite all the doses of the vaccine, in the final deceleration of the pandemic, a Covid that seemed mild, became long in his case. So he was gone, after 87 days of hospitalization.

It was not easy, but other families experienced even greater tragedies, in terms of the number of people affected, hunger, loss of source of income and employment. Children and young people experienced severe learning losses or dropped out of school.

May this suffering bring us lessons not only personally but as a country, in the sense of taking public policies seriously, the necessary prevention measures and the importance of looking at the most vulnerable. We have a future to build!

The article is in Portuguese

Tags: Covid stories Claudia Costin

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