I think I have eaten at a restaurant just a few times since I began chemotherapy. The primary reason we avoid restaurants is due to the germs there. About a month ago, Drew and I watched a news story on ABC about the top ten "germiest" parts of a restaurant. The ABC reporters tested various places at ten restaurants in three different states to create the list:
I honestly never would have guessed the top location for germs in a restaurant. But, now I totally believe it! You will have to watch the video to find out what it is--and it is not the salt/pepper shakes, utensils, glasses, bathroom door, or even toilet or faucet. Yuck!
We never go out to eat anymore, but when we do start going out to eat again, my restaurant trips probably aren't going to be quite as enjoyable. The ABC reporter offered 7 great tips to ward off restaurant germs:
On other germ notes....we had recorded the movie, :"Contagion", and finally watched it one night recently. It was a really good, interesting thriller. And it had an incredible cast line-up, including Jude Law, Matt Damon, Kate Winslet, Gwyneth Paltrow, and Laurence Fishburne. I had no idea this film even existed before recording and watching it. That is what happens when you have two young kids at home--your television is not on very much, and when it is it pretty much stays on PBS, Nick Jr or the Disney channel. Anyway, what makes this film so compelling is how the director shows how unhygienic human beings are and how easy it is to create a pandemic. In hundreds of various absent minded ways we touch our faces on a regular basis and in doing so, transfer and spread dangerous viruses. The movie really highlights my current state of mind. The way the director focuses on how people cough and then touch something (which someone else then touches), or people who pick their noses, wipe their mouths and cough, sneeze and splutter their way past you without any attempts to cover their mouths, makes it feel like the movie is filmed from my perspective. The next time you go to the grocery story, really focus on how people are touching their face, coughing, sneezing, rubbing their noses, etc. Watch how they are picking up (and putting back) the fruit and vegetables, handling groceries and signing the credit card pad! Can you believe a recent survey showed that although 95% of people say they wash their hands, only 12% actually do so and consequently 1 in 6 mobile phones have fecal bacterial on them! Now you know how easily a virus pandemic can spread. If people would just wash their hands more frequently, there would be much fewer cases of viruses. OK, now I am going to step off of my soapbox.
Anyway, I am so thankful I have not become ill with a virus during chemo. But, I attribute it to God helping me be constantly aware of germs and what my hands have touched. If I touch something that could potentially have germs on it, I wash my hands. Now I know how, by practicing good hygiene habits, you can really avoid illnesses. This is extremely important when I do not have a good immune system to fight illnesses. Although everyone in my immediate family has been ill lately, I have not yet acquired anything from them. Abbey is recovering from an ear infection, while Drew is now battling a cold. A week before Christmas, Luke had some strange fever virus for 5 days. I am well....just really tired and achey from the effects of chemo. Hopefully Drew will start feeling better soon--poor guy!
I am actually typing this post from my chemo chair, where I was hoping to receive my treatment today. However, my neutrophil count is too low at .2 today (needs to be 1.5). This means I am severely neutropenic and acquiring an illness would be very, very bad. So, I received my steroid, benadryl and neupogen injection and now we are headed back home. I'm praying my ANC will be at least 1.5 tomorrow and I will be able to get chemo. In the meantime, I am trying to avoid germs!
|no chemo today...germs--stay away!|