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  1. Khushboo Sheth1,2
  1. 1 Department of Medicine, VA Palo Alto Health Care System, Palo Alto, California, USA
  2. 2 Department of Immunology and Rheumatology, Stanford University, Palo Alto, California, USA
  1. Correspondence to Dr Khushboo Sheth, VA Palo Alto Health Care System, Palo Alto, CA 94304, USA; ksheth{at}

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I am a rheumatologist. I am NOT on the front lines of the pandemic, yet, but I AM scared.

I am scared for myself. I am scared when my husband and I discuss our advanced directives as he awaits a ‘deployment’ to the Intensive Care Unit. I am scared for my family, my friends, my colleagues and my patients. I am scared for the new normal.

I cope. I cope by maintaining a level of normalcy by conducting tele health visits. I cope by attending virtual yoga classes, making fresh pizza, doing silly dances with my nephew and listening to music. I am fortunate to be able to cope with all the above.

I break. I break when I learn my patient’s wife passed …

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