Storyteller: Antonia Levario
Loretta is a 50 year old mother and grandmother who lives in Birch Run, Michigan. Loretta is a mom of 5 grown daughters and 8 grandchildren, who she loves very dearly. Loretta had celebrated a birthday during the pandemic and explained that she would’ve liked to spend time with her big family at dinner but that seemed almost impossible at the time.
Loretta first heard of COVID-19 through the news and she wasn’t concerned about the dangerous virus because she felt it was being way too hyped up and it would be gone in a week. Loretta explains that she really didn’t get to see how serious the virus was before the state wide quarantine. When the state of Michigan went on a lock down Loretta was so frightened because she never imagined this was the extent of the virus. Loretta explains that she likes to spend time with her grandkids. Loretta is not really a homebody but this quarantine forced her to be one. Loretta had to find something to keep her mind off things so she decided to take upon multiple activities. She started sewing, cooking and started running. Loretta stated she had a lot of built up energy and she needed to get her mind off the rest of the world and take time for herself.
Loretta works at a nursing home in the area and she is a frontline hero. Loretta is still going to work during the pandemic and gets a COVID-19 test every week. Loretta says she takes very strict precautions at work in order to keep her residents safe as well as herself. Loretta says “sometimes I worry I might unknowingly have the virus and to pass it along to innocent people is heartbreaking.” Loretta now takes the virus very seriously for herself, her kids, her grandkids, and her residents.
Loretta has gained the satisfaction of helping others in the dire time and the importance or her job during this time. Loretta says she feels more seen and appreciated because of her title as a frontline worker.
One thing the pandemic has taught Loretta is to not take any moment for granted. Time is a precious resource that we can’t afford to lose.