Another week has flown by and Georgia Residents are still being told to quarantine no matter what under the “Shelter in Place” order. Per the Georgia DPH (Department of Health), Covid-19 cases have risen to an eye opening 10,880. Out of these cases, 2,298 are hospitalized cases while there are 412 current deaths. The Georgia leadership is encouraging personnel to stay indoors unless you have to leave. They emphasize to us daily, that If we decide to depart from home, please practice sanitization and keep 6ft away from your peers. The 83rd Governor of Georgia, Mr. Brian P. Kemp, extended Georgia’s state of Emergency to continue following into effect until May 13, 2020. Governor Kemp has also signed an order of 1,000 more National Guard troops to deploy to combat Covid-19. The primary goal of Georgia, like other states, is to flatten the curve and combat Covid-19.
Everyday my cellphone is on standby to await the call that I have been activated to serve in Covid-19. I have received 2 emails as of now. I am currently serving in the Georgia Army National Guard as a Sergeant. I have been in uniform for 5 years and 4 months. I currently have one combat deployment tour under me and several state activations. This situation is nothing new to me. Being quarantined is almost like being on a deployment. You sit around all day and do nothing. You just wait by ear. You come up with a routine to do everyday so that you don’t go crazy. This is my game plan during this pandemic. When my service is called upon, fear is a natural reaction. But I am also grateful for the privilege to serve. I realize that this is what I signed up for and I am doing my country and the state of Georgia a great favor. When we drill as guardsmen, this is the kind of stuff that we prepare for. This is the purpose of why all guardsmen exist. So when we receive the call, we are ready to execute the mission.
Most of my friends and family members among me are seemingly okay during this pandemic. Andrea Lembrick, a tax auditor based out of Covington, GA, knows that not being able to leave home is okay because her job doesn’t require it in the first place. She stated,”I am holding up pretty well through this pandemic because I was working from home before this happened. It’s not hard for me to be home and be limited to the outside world.” Most people still have to work from home however. Estephany Monacada, a full-time student success advisor at Sterling College, does not feel anything except on the weekends. She has traveled to work every day since the canceling of all face to face sessions at Sterling. “Since I am still working full-time I have not felt the impact quite as much. It is harder on the weekends when you can’t go anywhere to get out of the small town feel. But it’s nice to be creative and do things outside.”