Just Gimme 14 Days Real Quick

I’m postponing The Tether, just to be safe.

Me, before I knew. Photo by Benjamin Stuben Ferrar.

I got exposed.

I got exposed the way I get exposed to every germy thing: my children. I won’t go into details for privacy reasons, but the bottom line is: they were exposed to someone that has since tested positive, and then they came home and we slobbered all over each other, and thus they exposed me.

It’s nobody’s fault. It’s dumb luck. I told my son, the thing about illness is, it’s not about whether you’re a good person or a bad person. It’s random. “Death doesn’t discriminate,” he said, proving all those hours listing to the Hamilton cast album have paid off.

Exposure is not the same as contraction. The kids were exposed; did they contract? We may never know. If they show symptoms in the next fourteen days, then we’ll know. But this disease spreads silently; they could have it, be contagious, and not feel a thing. Who knows?

So we’re doing what we’re supposed to do: locking it down for fourteen days. Waiting and seeing. No more trips to the grocery store. Riding out the storm, if it comes. Praying.

And that means I need to postpone The Tether.

Look, it was always a risk. We all knew that. There was always a non-zero chance I could give something to somebody, or somebody could give something to me. And for all I know, I’ve been exposed before, maybe multiple times, maybe I’ve been in a constant state of exposure and re-exposure since February; who knows?

But I can’t, in good conscience, show up to somebody’s house, even in our socially distant way, knowing I’ve been exposed to a possibly-life-threatening disease, and spread it around. I don’t want to be Covid Megan.

I’m not going to stop doing it. If you’ve scheduled a performance, I’ll be in touch soon to reschedule. I am proceeding with an abundance (an over-abundance?) of caution, but I am proceeding.

This is part of it. The calculation of risk. The uncertainty. I don’t want to postpone. I had a bunch of shows lined up in Grinnell on Saturday I was excited about; I was going to film some of it. I don’t want to do this. But it’s not about what I want. To quote myself from the show, “We have to be smarter than ourselves.”

We’ll wash our hands. We’ll spray down everything. We’ll do our best to distract ourselves from the howl of anguish that threatens to overwhelm us. We’re staying calm. Maybe we’ll bake.

I confess I am deeply afraid. I confess I am outraged by our elected officials’ casual disregard for life. I am alarmed by my own reckless urges. I’m uncertain I’m doing the right thing. I’m haunted by the very real possibility that I could do the right thing at every turn and still face disaster. Death doesn’t discriminate, etc.

I hate this. I love you.

Talk soon.

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Megan Gogerty

Megan Gogerty

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Playwright. Comedian. Professor. Delightful person. Hailed by the Chicago Reader as 'blond-haired' and 'blue-eyed,' Megan Gogerty is 'a woman.'