Irises In North Side
Ellie and Kwan Burke, and their children, twins Anoushea and brother Kofi, 9, who are holding 2-year-old Nico, are enjoying time together on the front steps of their home in The Fan. “Though it took about four weeks into self-quarantining to find, this time has allowed us all to determine our own rhythm to our days and our lives,” the Burkes said. “As a result, we’ve dropped much deeper into our relationships with one another and have felt a richness we’ve never experienced before.”
Reginald “Bubba” Williams III, and his sister, Denise Williams, have shared a home in Henrico County for the past six years.
“We do well together, but we are both missing our activity,” Ms. Williams said. “I am totally missing getting out.”
But she knows staying in will help stop the transmission of the coronavirus, protecting her, her brother and others. She said she used to go out a lot.
But now, “No malls. No stores.” And lately, she said, “My sleep habits aren’t good.”
Cheri Gupton, stands outside her home in Chamberlayne Farms before heading to work as an acute care nurse for DaVita Dialysis servicing various hospitals in the area. She has been working as a nurse for 11 years.
She says she doesn’t know which hospital she will be assigned to from day to day, but she has no doubt that she is needed. Most of her patients, she says, tested positive for COVID-19.
Her silver lining?
“Due to the somber reality that we may not always have our loved ones around, I find myself more intentional with calling them and letting them know how much I love them or just asking how they are doing.”
Nitika and Joshua Achalam may be staying home, but they are staying busy.
They are outside their home in Fulton with their chickens, Octavia Butler and Zora Neale Hurston.
Asked how their lives are different during the pandemic, Mrs. Achalam, executive director of Project Yoga Richmond and an herbal healer with True Grit Botanica, said, “We’ve launched an online membership platform where the community can remotely access yoga and mindfulness content from PYR ambassadors.”
Mr. Achalam, a reggae artist and educator, said, “Shows are postponed. But we’ll regroup and spend more time in the studio.”
On April 4, he performed in “Couchella,” a digital music festival that helped raise money for the Makindu Children’s Center in Kenya. The money will help install hand-washing stations at the center to combat the spread of COVID-19.
Asked about the silver lining, both say the crisis has caused them to slow down and concentrate on the health and well-being of themselves and family.
Antoinette Rogers is staying put at her North Side home with her 161⁄2-year-old Maltese mix dog, Toby. She takes him out for walks and fresh air. The adjunct education professor at the University of Richmond teaches one weekly online class now from the comfort of home.
“I know I thrive in a face-to-face setting,” she said, while admitting that online teaching “takes a little more effort.”
The pandemic, she said, has brought a pause to most everyone’s life.
The silver lining?
“I think God gave us some time to step back, assess some things and take stock of our lives.”