Dr. Inglish: A war against the invisible enemy
In 2003, I was a young 21-year-old sergeant in an Infantry Unit out of Ft. Lewis, Wash. I served as a rifle team leader. We were sent to Iraq during the early part of Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF).
I will never forget the night before we crossed the border into Iraq. There were so many unknowns and so much uncertainty that caused fear and anxiety throughout the unit. That night, we had a meeting with our platoon sergeant, someone for whom I had a tremendous amount of respect. A true leader. He told us about how scared he was about the next day and how he believed that it was normal and that the fear we were experiencing was a good thing. That it would keep us honest.
In the last couple of weeks, I have been thinking about that discussion. Thinking about the unknowns and uncertainty that constantly surround us. About the fear I am experiencing right now. Thinking: When will we have our first positive patient? Will I get sick? How will I support my family if I get sick? If I do get sick, how bad will it be? Will I get my family sick?
I’m guessing many of you have the same questions and probably many more. Unfortunately, we don’t have the answers.