Create Space for Everyone Looking for Space (Immunocompromised)

Create Space For everyone who is looking for space

My wife Sarah is immunocompromised.

For the past several years, our family has been in and out of lockdown, wearing masks from cloth to N95, being among a crowd while masked and distanced, and hugging our family members in hazmat suits.

Can you relate?

For a lot of my friends, Covid has been a mild inconvenience. For us, it's been a literal matter of life or death. I've had friends who laughed Covid off, only to suffer from long Covid now. Some throw it off flippantly, while also spreading it to their family members who have now passed away. Some shrug it off as a hoax, a liberal joke, a media-made frenzy, and something not so serious.

Covid is serious, and it does not care your political leaning.

But what can we do about it for people like us? For our family, we've been anxiously awaiting a proper time–or space–to be within a community again. We've done virtual services, online church, Classroom by The Bible Project, and attended outdoor and distanced services.

My wife Sarah is immunocompromised.

We cannot do in-person and indoor services. The reason is quite simple and articulated in a single sentence: for an immunocompromised person, there are too many risks associated with houses of worship. Viral spread is at its highest during singing, prolonged exposure within an unmasked and indoor space sans proper ventilation, and a population that is less vaccinated than the majority of the population make this a high risk environment for us at current.

Then I guess you have to make the decision to stay away, right?

Yes, we do. But... it's not really a decision that we are making on our own; it's a decision that has been placed on us by a demographic we love who have no other options for us, or people like us. Our panel of doctors–all who have more schooling than us and decades of experience–have all advised us that unless there is a safe space with plenty of ventilation, mandatory masks, and a vaccinated population, we cannot risk the potential exposure.

My wife Sarah is immunocompromised.

We want to attend. We want community. We long for it, but have to distance ourselves from something that is core to our worldview. We have no choice, but we really wish we did. We wish we could attend in person. We wish there was an outdoor space that allowed for distance. We wish we could engage in community, bump shoulders, and feel the embrace of the greeter who hasn't seen you in two years.

These are all wishes, but they don't have to be.

There can and should be an option available for those like us. We matter. My kids matter. My wife matters. And for the tens of thousands of immunocompromised people out there, well, they matter too.