Paul Sawka Talks About COVID-19

So much has changed for Paul since the Coronavirus came to Canada. Paul has always been a very busy person with a full schedule. He has always been very social. In this blog interview Paul talks about how he is continuing to stay in touch with people, how he is keeping himself busy and two new projects he has started and wants to complete.

Paul misses his roommate, his co-workers and his routine a lot. He misses the way things used to be before the virus came and it’s difficult to understand why we have to do all these things. But being the positive guy that he is, Paul wants to encourage everyone to hang in there! Stay at home, wash your hands and please stay healthy.

How did you first learn about the Coronavirus, and when?

Paul: In February my family took a vacation to the Dominican Republic. My Mom & Dad took antibacterial wipes with us and we wiped down everything we touched in the aircraft. I thought that was strange at the time, but that’s when I learned about the Coronavirus and how easily it spreads. That’s the first I had heard of it. Thinking back now, I am very glad that we did that.

Do you visit any good websites for more information about coronavirus, or watch the news?

Paul: I have not been on any websites, but I watch the CBC news almost every evening with my parents. They also read the newspaper in the morning and we discuss the situation over breakfast.

Who do you talk to about the virus?

Paul: I talk to my roommate, my community and work support people, my friends, and my family about the virus.

What are some things you are doing to keep yourself and others safe?

Paul: I am washing my hands a lot every day and staying home as much as possible in order to stay safe.

Who are you spending time with and how do you keep yourself safe going from place to place?

Paul: I had to move home with my parents, because my roommate’s co-worker got sick and they sent her home to self-isolate. I spend time mostly at home with my parents and only go out for short walks.

Do you find it hard to follow the rules about distancing?

Paul: I find this very difficult. I miss my roommate, my co-workers, my friends and all of my activities and routines.

Are you worried about anything? If so, what are you worried about and how are you going to solve that worry?

Paul: I am worried about when or if I can get back to work and back to my activities and seeing my friends. Mom is worried about me getting sick because I have had pneumonia and been in the hospital twice, so we don’t want that to happen again.

What has been cancelled because of Coronavirus that you enjoy?

Paul: Everything has been cancelled! Movie theaters are closed, there’s no more swimming, no more Mount Royal University classes, no more Special Olympic activities, no more meeting friends and just hanging out. No family gatherings.

Your schedule has changed a lot because of the virus, what has changed the most? How are you dealing with that change?

Paul: Because everything has been cancelled I now have a lot more time on my hands. It is difficult to stay active and busy. The biggest change was not having to go to work every day and not living in my condo with my roommate.

Are there some things that have not changed in your schedule and routine?

Paul: Although it is different I still see my support workers on FaceTime as well as my friends. I still keep in touch with people through texting and phone calls.

How are you staying active?

Paul: Special Olympics Calgary has some daily exercise sessions that I follow along with. They keep me active. I even got to work out with Alex Singleton who used to play for the Stampeders! That was pretty cool. Sometimes I go for short walks with my parents. I am baking more with my Mom. We made peanut butter cookies and banana bread this week. I am also helping with the spring cleaning. We downloaded an audio book from the library that I am enjoying as well. We are looking into downloading some computer games for me to play. In the evenings we watch some of our favorite movies together.

Are there any projects you will work on while you are at home more?

Paul: My Dad & I enjoy wood working & are building a new night table for my room in the condo. It is a good project and is taking lots of time. We also hope to put together a photo book from our vacation in the Dominican Republic. That will be an interesting project to work on.