I’m one of the lucky ones.
I hammered my way to a vaccination for Covid-19 as soon as possible. I’ve gotten every booster except one that I thought I had to wait until August to receive — misreading “April”. So far, I’ve had five vaccinations, zero adverse reactions, and no episodes of the disease.
I started feeling funky mid-afternoon last Monday. A friend had cautioned me of her own illness two weeks prior, and I had had negative home tests and no symptoms. But after six or seven work hours, I discovered that my brain had fallen asleep while my body still toiled. I’ve never felt anything like that. I made my way home and collapsed into bed without eating dinner or going through any of my normal nightly rituals.
The next morning, I realized that I could not go to work. My throat throbbed, my head pounded, and I couldn’t control my sneezing. I strove to convince myself that I had a summer cold, which we all know feels worse than a winter one. But nonetheless, I asked someone to bring a pack of Covid tests. I felt absolutely no surprise to see the positive result.
Since then, I’ve hunkered down. I’ve only ventured out of my abode twice, once on Wednesday to try to water my plants (I failed; a neighbor did it for me) and yesterday, Friday, when I spent a glorious five minutes in my porch rocker gazing at the trees as they swayed in the Delta breeze. The husband of the California lawyer for whom I work has brought groceries, medication, bottled water, and a half-loaf of freshly baked sourdough bread. I’d categorize my symptoms as comparatively mild, although the first couple of nights frightened me, as my fever spiked and my breathing grew a bit ragged.
I’m five-and-a-half days past the onset of symptoms, so according to my doctor, I’m technically no longer infectious. In the interim, I’ve slept fifteen hours a day, watched a myriad of funny videos on social media, consumed a very peculiar British police procedural that I’m still trying to understand, and gotten concerned texts from a dozen friends and family members. I’ve lost my appetite, dropped seven pounds, and quit drinking coffee. I expect to regain all of that, but for now, I’m calling these an unexpected side benefit.
I cruised the pages of the CDC offering statistics on Covid-related deaths to remind myself of how bad it could have been — pre-vaccine, pre-treatment. As for myself, I’m sitting up and taking nourishment. I might be unmarried, a struggling introvert, and a person who spends most of her time wondering what the hell happened to the dreams she cultivated and the plans she made. But I had people come through for me this week, bringing me what I needed and checking on my status. I’ve heard from my son, my sisters, my brothers, my neighbors, my co-workers, and a plethora of people in the Kansas City region who still regard me as part of their tribe. The ping of an incoming message interrupts my sleep and I don’t mind one bit. I recognize it as a sound which many people crave to break the silence of their solitary days. I’m one of the lucky ones.
It’s the twenty-ninth day of the one-hundred and fifteenth month of My Year Without Complaining. Life continues.