ROME — The pandemic has posed unprecedented challenges for households all over the world managing work and residential life.
For the Di Giacobbe household, the juggling is even trickier since mother and pop are intensive care nurses in the identical COVID-19 hospital. They spend their days making an attempt to supply their sufferers the kind of private care and a spotlight they offer their kids.
The household will have a good time Christmas collectively this 12 months — mother and father Maurizio Di Giacobbe and Glenda Grossi managed to each get Dec. 25 off. However they received’t have grandparents, aunts and uncles round their vacation desk. They need to defend them.
“So we shall be with our three kids, the canine and the 2 cats,” Grossi mentioned on a uncommon Saturday when each mother and father have been dwelling on the similar time, adorning the Christmas tree with Tiziano, 4, Arianna, 9, and Flavio, 10.
When the pandemic first erupted in Italy final spring, and nobody knew how one can mitigate its unfold, the mother and father wore surgical masks across the kids and developed a “digital hug” to specific their love. For the kids, it was a sport. However their mother and father knew first-hand simply how lethal COVID-19 was.
“I don’t need to say we bought used to seeing individuals die, however we have been going to work with a sort of feeling of resignation” that at most they may present their sufferers with dignity of their ultimate moments, Di Giacobbe mentioned.
Over time, medical doctors found out which therapies labored higher. “Now, as a substitute, we’re preventing,” he mentioned.
Nonetheless, Italy now leads Europe with probably the most COVID-19 deaths — greater than 65,000.
In some ways, the couple carry the love of a household into the COVID-19 ward, figuring out effectively the significance of touches, caresses and video calls with their sufferers’ family members exterior, who’re in any other case barred from visiting.
Grossi tears up when she remembers one in all her first sufferers at Rome’s Tor Vergata COVID hospital, Fabio, a 43-year-old father of three who married his associate in March whereas he was hospitalized with COVID-19.
“I do not forget that day when Fabio made the video name to his spouse and youngsters, he touched his chest along with his hand and mentioned: ‘They should intubate me, I’ll see you quickly.’” As Di Giaccobe sits by her aspect, Grossi’s voice cracks.
“’See you quickly’ by no means got here true sadly, as a result of Fabio didn’t make it.”