I have had such a hard time deciding how to start this week’s column. I’ve gone back and forth between this scare the whole world is going through right now with all this COVID-19 outbreak and just my regular writing. So, I’ve decided to go ahead and get it off my mind right now so I can get on my with hog driving, as Daddy would say.
Up until last Tuesday I was pretty much taking it all in stride and sort of scoffing at the way people were acting and the big deal the media was making of this whole mess. Then, when they started closing schools, I thought, “Well, maybe there is more to this than they are telling us.” The next thing that made me take notice was the NCAA and NBA and other sports leagues just shutting down for the season. That’s a whole lot of money those cities won’t have coming into their places of business. NASCAR had its race without any fans. Can you imagine how much money was lost there? So, then I was like, “People, what in the world is going on?”
Then to top it all off, there’s all the posts on Facebook about toilet paper of all things. I’m thinking of all things that I would think to buy extra of, toilet paper would be at the bottom of the list. When we were growing up we had an outside toilet until I was four, but everybody else still had a toilet. Everybody I knew used the Sears catalogue for wiping purposes. You had something to read while you were using the toilet and then something to wipe with when you finished. Now, I have enough newspapers and old T-shirts that we could go till Christmas before having to buy toilet paper if we had to. My husband and I have laughed at all this craziness over toilet paper and wondered maybe if diarrhea was one of the symptoms with the virus. We tried to imagine how it all got started to run out and buy all you could.
At any rate, Monday was the first time I had been to Whitesburg since all this hoarding stuff had started. They are telling the truth about shelves being empty and people having buggies full of paper towels and toilet paper.
But, on the other hand I have also noticed people are offering to help anybody that needs help getting their supplies in. The county officials are broadcasting any way they can get the word out that they are willing to help anybody if they will just let them know what they need to do. Schools are running the buses to take lunches to the school kids. If you know anybody that needs help during all this, just let them know there are people more than willing to help.
Oh, that reminds me of another funny that was posted on Facebook. All kinds of people were posting that if anyone knew of anyone that was hungry or didn’t have a way to get their groceries in to let them know. Then lo and behold, here comes a post from Tricia Sexton Lewis that said if you wanted to go eat at the steak house to meet at the post office at a certain time. Well, all kinds of people replied with hilarious remarks about they wish they had known but they had just eaten or others to that same effect.
Then the funniest one of all was from Phyllis Begley Combs. She said she knew people were offering to help others and bring them food, but Tricia was truly taking it to heart and was going to take them out to eat with her. Come to find out Tricia didn’t mean to put it on Facebook, she must have thought she was only putting it on someone’s messenger.
I had a post I wanted to put in last week, but didn’t have Rhonda Cook’s permission yet. It seems Rhonda’s daughter, Brooke Hollenbeck King, had a rare condition that she was unaware of until she delivered her first child. He was born Feb. 29, and then Brooke started having complications after they went home from the hospital. Rhonda posted this in Facebook after Brooke came home from UK:
“I just want to thank everyone that has prayed for my Brooke. And I’m asking you all to keep her and her little family in your prayers. We are so blessed to be from a small community where most people will stop what they are doing and have a special prayer with their Heavenly Father when they are asked.
“She truly is a miracle. No one would’ve ever guessed she was as sick as she was. She had pushed herself so hard the last couple months of her pregnancy. Brooke is stronger then I ever imagined. She is down 38 pounds since they started taking the fluid off of her. The cardiologist that had her flown out told us she had between 30 and 40 pounds of fluid on her. He told us she was in congestive heart failure and he thought it was Peripartum Cardiomyopathy (PPCM). He is a highly intelligent man. He is a retired cardiologist doctor that ARH flies in for four days every other week. The Lord put him in the right place at the right time.
“She is still very weak and not really able to enjoy her sweet baby boy like she should, which breaks our hearts. Pray that the medication continues to work and her heart heals 100% so she, Dillon, and Brady can go home and start their life together as a family of three. It’s been so hard on her both physically and mentally. It’s actually taken a toll on the entire family so we all could use all the prayers we can get.
“I normally don’t do long posts but I felt the need to thank everyone and especially thank God! We are so blessed that she has a husband that loves her like he does. Our family friends, and her work family have gone over and beyond with help and support in every way. Our family is so grateful for all of you!”
There were so many birthdays this past week. Lelsey Haynes Richardson and Mary Elizabeth Back’s both were March 11, Richard Smith’s was March 13, Wendy Madden-Rutherford, Gertrude Maggard, and Nancy Blair were all on the 14th, and last but not least Harlynn Brielle Pedigo celebrated her third birthday on the 13th. She is the granddaughter of my brother Albert Tackett and his wife Tonya Tackett.
The Letcher County Senior Citizens lost another precious member. Estel Taylor passed away on the 10th. He was very special to Mom. He would always witness to some of the members that he knew weren’t saved. I loved to listen to him. He had been in the Letcher Manor Nursing Facility for quite awhile. We have missed him very much. Please remember his family and all the other families that have lost loved ones. Pray especially for my pastor Bill Jones and his entire family.
Also pray for James Boggs. He was a member of the gospel singing group, The Happy Notes. He has had surgery recently and now has the flu and some bleeding on the brain. His daughter Derenia Dunbar asked that we remember him in our prayers.
And, as always remember Laney Webb. She has had another bone marrow transplant and now we just pray that it will take. I would love so much to see Laney and her family get to come home and live normal lives again.
Ending here once again as Oma Hatton always did —even though some of your church services may have been cancelled — please get yourself to church Sunday.