People of Earnin: Mariah Dwyer-Britton
As a healthcare worker, Mariah sees the effects of COVID daily, and she’s had to sacrifice a lot to keep her family safe. Follow along as she gives us an in depth look at what it’s like to be a healthcare worker in the midst of a pandemic:
“I have parents that are high risk medically and other people in my life that could be high risk. So making sure that I am as safe as I possibly can be, surrounded by people with COVID, it's definitely a priority. And with my friend, Missy, who just passed from COVID, it's scary because she was around the same age as me and she wasn't a person that was sick. She was a person that I medically would consider a healthy person. She got sick in November and was hospitalized, got out of the hospital, and then declined. We thought she was getting better and she wasn't. It's scary because it kicks all the stereotypes of older people being the one that gets it and people with underlying health conditions getting sick. It really kicks that.
I’ve cared for a few patients that were in my same age range and they were otherwise healthy and it's taking people out. It's scary most of the time. I've used Earnin when I've had an exposure to COVID and have had to either quarantine at my house, or if that's not possible because I was exposed during my shift, stay at a hotel and stay away from my family that way. It's not something that's necessarily budgeted into my other bills so it helps. It's helped tremendously. My coworkers and friends that are in healthcare have had to do the same thing. When you have high risk exposure, you're not allowed to go home because you have healthy people at home who could potentially get this. We don't want to expose our families to that and we don't want to take the risks.
I have a 12-year-old girl, and a son who is going to be one in a few days. We weren’t expecting her to be a big sister. She was very content being an only child, but it's been really cool watching her grow with him and seeing how much they've bonded. I was worried about that, but he absolutely loves her and she's very protective so it's cool to see the dynamic there. What drives me a lot is family, but also keeping the lifestyle that we have. For the most part, pre-COVID, we’ve lived very comfortably. We have a nice house and we live in a nice area and we were so used to going out, doing family things, and going to events. So now, my motivation is keeping us afloat and making sure that my kids know that it's not always going to be COVID, it's not always going to be a scary time. We're just trying to keep inside of that silver lighting so that we don't completely forget what life was like before.
My patients are also a huge driver for everything that I do as far as school and work. I've been in healthcare for a long time and I love my patients. I don't know them pre-hospital, but what I get from them, even the difficult ones, it's all perspective. I enjoy seeing things from their perspective, caring for them, and helping them try to reach their goal of getting out of the hospital or overcoming whatever obstacle this year has thrown at them.
The last three times that I used Earnin was to buy my own PPE (personal protective equipment) for my new job. I have to use what is called a PAPR, which almost looks like a vacuum cleaner attached to a mask or a hood and it filters out the air. I found out recently that at my new job, I would have to share that mask with multiple people. And we had something over like 400 to 900 employees out because of either quarantine or because of COVID. So now it's not even safeguarding myself from the general public, it's safeguarding myself against my own coworkers. A pack of five of those hoods, it's like $200, so that's what I used Earnin for these last three times. So that come Monday, I would have my own personal stash of these hoods that I could wear to filter my oxygen so that I wouldn't have to share with my coworkers. It helped my peace of mind so much. I think that's a huge thing that Earnin brings to people. Whether they need to use it or they don't need to use it, it's peace of mind that they can use it, and I think that's great.”
Thank you to every healthcare professional putting their life on the line each and every day. If you know of someone working in the healthcare field, reach out to them and thank them for their sacrifice. They deserve it.