Reflections on the Two Year Anniversary of Covid-19 in Washington State

According to King County Public Health, today marks two years since the first case of 2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) was found in Washington and the United States.

Washington was ground zero for the pandemic in the United States back in the early days when we knew little to nothing about how it would change our lives and the world.

Living Snoqualmie’s first article on Covid-19 was in early February 2020, and over 200 more followed in the next, almost, two years.  

Our lives have changed dramatically at school, at work, and home. The announcement that today is the second anniversary caused me to reflect on my own Covid-19 personal changes and changes that have likely affected our entire community since the start of the pandemic.

The most significant change in my own life, and many others, has been a complete switcharoo in my work life. I used to leave the house every day and drive about 100 miles working as a dog trainer/walker. I dabbled a little in writing, but the pandemic caused me to entirely give up dog walking, go part-time training and take over Living Snoqualmie.

Someone else’s change facilitated my change, but the determining factor at the time was that it was just safer to work from home. I know very few people whose work life was not directly impacted by Covid-19 in at least some small way. In some ways, I’m grateful for the change, but I do miss being out and more social.

Some of it went downhill fast in the early days of the pandemic. The loss of my social life *sob* led to a couple of different things, the first being a change in my grooming. My hair was VERY long for the first time in a long time; I never wore makeup or changed out my sweats. I did, however, amass a brand new wardrobe of various facemasks.

However, that got old very fast, and I sprinted into an online shopping frenzy of buying clothes and makeup I would never or rarely wear (sorry to our overworked local UPS, USPS and FedEx drivers).

Out of necessity, we ordered and picked up our food curbside and tried different grocery delivery services in the interest of trying to stay away from other people. As we learned more about how the virus spread, most of that fell by the wayside, and I ventured out into the one-way aisles of the grocery stores. Man, I’m glad that’s long gone.

As I write, I’m struck by how words I never used before have now become a part of my everyday language. I knew of words like pandemic, endemic and quarantine but never had a reason to use them.

Words and phrases like Covid-19, Coronavirus, phased re-opening, social distancing, contact tracing, N95 and self-isolate were either little-known words to most of us or never used in the context we now regularly use them.

Many holidays and special events had to be put on hold until ‘safer options’ were available. I had a close relative die in March 2020, and we have not yet had any kind of service. At this point, I’m not sure that it will ever happen.

I, like many others, enjoy traveling and did it quite regularly. Aside from one short trip to Indiana, my last BIG trip was in 2017, and my last little trip to Vegas was in the fall of 2019. I have one planned for March, and have my fingers crossed our march through the Greek alphabet variants will have slowed by then.

In early 2021, as we reflected on one year of the pandemic, we watched as COVID-19 vaccines became available in our communities, which brought a sense of safety.

Our local vaccination numbers are (including booster shots) as of January 19th.

  • 82% of residents 12+ in zip code 98045 (North Bend) are fully vaccinated, up from 80.6% December 17th, 50.6% of the fully vaccinated have a booster dose
  • 75% of residents 12+ in zip code 98024 (Fall City) are fully vaccinated, up from 74% December 17th, 51% of the fully vaccinated have a booster dose
  • 92.9% of residents 12+ in zip code 98065 (Snoqualmie) are fully vaccinated, up from 90.9% December 17th, 52.4% of the fully vaccinated have a booster dose
  • 79.5% of residents 12+ in zip code 98014 (Carnation) are fully vaccinated, up from 77.9% December 17th, 51.3% of the fully vaccinated have a booster dose
  • 91.5% of residents 12+ in zip code 98019 (Duvall) are fully vaccinated, up from 89.9% December 17th, 54.1% of the fully vaccinated have a booster dose

As more and more people are vaccinated, businesses are reopening, children head back to the classroom, and people are returning to their everyday lives.

What has changed in your life in the last two years? For better or worse? Will you be keeping those changes, or are you eager to get back to the old normal?

Thanks to everyone who has done something to make their neighbor a little bit safer during this unprecedented time.

[Excerpts of this story were taken from a Statement from the Washington State Department of Health, which can be read in its entirety here.]

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  • “…a little bit safer during this unprecedented time.”

    Very “unprecedented,” indeed. As if governments have never tried to amass more power and wealth for themselves by abolishing human rights and subjugating the citizenry. And as if all the lemmings didn’t follow them all the way every time, giving up their rights and begging for Daddy Government to save them from their own cowardice and ignorance. Maybe it’s time to stop public “schools” (and yes, that’s quoted sarcastically) from teaching our children to hate each other based on the color of their skin and get back to teaching actual history.

    If you ever wondered how you would’ve behaved while Germany was loading your Jewish neighbors onto train cars “for everyone’s safety,” now you know. Very sad what Washington has become. What a disgrace to its namesake.

    1. Ridiculous to compare public health measures to anything that happened in the holocaust. What is wrong with you? Judging by the numbers, you’re in the minority, thank God.

  • Here we go again, please post the QAnon rhetoric on Truth Social. I know: your constitutional rights are being taken by the libs, lock her up, dont tread on me, stop the steal, 5G towers are brainwashing us and the great awakening is upon us. I get it, but I just don’t care to hear it anymore. So go ahead aLet us lemmings live in harmony and please move to northern Idaho or better yet I hear Wyoming is the new Idaho. (Californians don’t know even know Wyoming is a state!) Oh ya how did you forget to add the phrase, Just sayin…!

  • Living Snoqualmie