Covid-19, Day 10

Yep. I have it. Every day I get a text from my parents and several friends asking if I’m starting to feel better yet. The ugly truth is I feel so much worse than I did 10 days ago when I tested positive. Each day my worst symptoms change just a bit, but every day I. Am. Miserable. I know who I got it from, and I have been self-isolating so I don’t spread it to others, except Benny because we share everything. Yikes. The rest of the family tested negative, then Benny started having symptoms and tested positive on the second test. Thank God our kids are fine and totally self-sufficient!

You’ve probably heard this affects every person differently, so here’s what I’m experiencing in case you want to compare notes, or if you’re one of those people still spouting off that this is, “just the flu” and not that bad.

I’ve had a constant headache that doesn’t go away with medication or even ice on the back of my head and neck. I’ve got sinus congestion and drainage, which is probably what is causing my sore throat. I’m coughing so hard I’m vomiting or peeing myself, sometimes both. My fever is fluctuating between 99 and 101.7 degrees. There is no part of my body that doesn’t hurt – even my hair hurts. I lost my sense of taste and smell, which was pretty trippy. Now that my taste is coming back, every flavor feels like too much – too sweet, or too spicy, or too bland. I’m asthmatic and my chest is so tight I can’t take a deep breath without choking. I have just enough energy to get myself up to use the bathroom which is good because…diarrhea. UGH. I am not sugarcoating anything for you. This virus is nasty!

I am monitoring all my vitals, taking supplements and vitamins, and my doctor says I’m doing everything I am supposed to do – I just have to rest and drink lots of fluids and wait this out, unless I can’t breathe, then I’m heading to the ER. I am weary.

I was crushed to have to miss Linda’s funeral last Saturday, and even though it was livestreamed, I was so sick I slept right through it. ☹

As hard as this is, there are silver linings in the form of our people:

  • My SIL in Washington ordered us enough pizza to feed the kids for a few days, and she and my brother call me every day to check on us and tell me they’re praying for us.
  • Benny’s BFF brought me yogurt, bananas, and OJ when those were the only things I thought I could keep down. He continues to check on us and drop little things off here and there.
  • One of my tribe did a grocery trip/porch drop off for us.
  • One of my tribe sent me a Grubhub gift card.
  • One of my tribe dropped off Manuka honey, Elderberry, and Goldenseal Root for me today. We are throwing everything we can at this to see what helps.
  • Our parents call or text us every day, and several friends keep checking in on us. That makes me feel loved.
  • My older brother (by a year) left me a “Checking on you, baby sister” message, and my younger brother who has already recovered from Covid checked on me too. Brothers for the win!!
  • My boss/friend has been extremely understanding about my need for flexibility with my work schedule.
  • Benny qualified for special PTO that won’t count against his regular PTO so even though my income is suffering right now, his is not.

I know we will recover from this and for that I am grateful, but it’s day 10 and recovery isn’t happening just yet, and patience has never been a virtue I possess. It blows my damn mind that I still have a few friends calling this a plandemic, and a hoax. I kind of hate them right now, but I wouldn’t wish this on them either.

Please be smart and stay safe, friends!

Loving Linda

She called me a breath of fresh air. She also called me out on my shit. She took me to lunch and gifted me with pretty things. When we lived states away from each other, she wrote me long, handwritten letters. She looked me in the eye when she talked to me and every now and then she’d reach out and squeeze my hand. She laughed at my jokes, reassured me I’d be just fine when I was weighed down with worry and sadness, and she always ended our chats with, “I love you, honey.”

I wrote this about her in a blog post 15 years ago:

“I had the privilege of spending a few precious hours with Linda today, my friend and mentor. It’s so nice to know we live in the same town again – even for a short time. She picked me up and we went shopping for a bit, went to her eye doctor, then enjoyed lunch together. We ate Chinese food, and since she had her eyes dilated, she asked me to read the fortune from her cookie. I made one up that kept us laughing for several minutes. There is seldom a moment of silence when we are together!

Linda is 60 something, has blonde spiky hair (Clairol, like me), beautiful eyes and a bright lip-sticked smile. She loves big silver jewelry – the bigger the better, fell in love with her husband when she was 17, collects chili pepper stuff, loves chocolate, and reads more than any woman I know. She has some health challenges, but mostly takes them in stride. She is the only woman in my life that prays with me every time we’re together. She and I have talked and struggled through some deep stuff. She gives me wise counsel and points me back to God. She has two daughters already, so I tease her that I’m a bonus. Her daughter Corrine calls me her sister from another mother.

Linda gives the best hugs and she’s always thrilled to see me. As much as I get from our friendship, she tells me that I’m a drink of fresh water! Nobody has ever talked about me like that. The funniest thing about our relationship? We met at a garage sale! Our friendship dates back to BC – before children (mine of course – hers are older than me). She is one of my favorite balcony people. How I love and respect this woman! She affirms me and releases me to be who I am. She makes me a better me.” ~April 2005

Corrine contacted me late last night to tell me Linda passed away yesterday, surrounded by her family. I don’t know the details yet, I just know I am aching and heartbroken. It’s been hard to breathe all year, but this loss has been my greatest and I need a pause. I learned long ago not to wait to let the people I love know how I feel about them. The comforting thought holding me together right now is that there is no doubt in my mind that Linda knew the depth of my love for her. Say what you need to say. Do it now. Don’t wait.

Is this one of those moments in history we should chronicle because someone in the future will ask us, “Where were you when Covid-19 spread across the globe?”

I was in elementary school when President Reagan was shot. Our class mailed him a get well card.

Prince Charles and Lady Diana were married on my 9th birthday, so that’s memorable for me.

I experienced the collective shock of the space shuttle Challenger exploding while I was sitting with my friends in class in middle school.

I was a junior in high school when the Berlin Wall came down – we have a piece of it.

I was a young married woman with family in Oklahoma City when Timothy McVeigh blew up the federal building there.

We were living in Colorado and I was pregnant with Max during the Columbine shooting. I sat in front of the TV, tears running down my face and one hand rubbing my belly as I wondered what kind of world we were bringing a child into.

We were living in Indianapolis that crisp fall morning in 2001 when I left for Bible study. Shortly after arriving, I watched in horror on live TV as a plane flew into the 2nd twin tower of the World Trade Center, and then I saw them fall.

Microscopic view of Coronavirus, a pathogen that attacks the respiratory tract. Analysis and test, experimentation. Sars

There are so many historical touch points and defining moments in our lives. Those were just a handful of mine.  Could this be another one? What will people in the future say about this pandemic? Will they ask questions like these?

  • What was it like?
  • Were you scared?
  • Did you blow it off as no big deal at first?
  • Did you really quarantine for ___ days?
  • What did you do all day?
  • What did you do when the stores ran out of necessities?
  • How did you ration your toilet paper?
  • Did anyone in your family test positive for Covid-19?
  • Did you lose anyone close to you due to the virus?
  • How did people treat each other? Was it everyone for themselves or were people community-minded?
  • Who were the leaders that instilled calm into the chaos and hope into the fear?

I want to record details now to help me remember then. How are you doing with all of this? What’s happening in your family? Your city? Your state? Your country? The collective stories will be memorable because we help make them part of the official record of our time. Write it down. Take photos. Scrapbook or journal things out. Answer the question.

Where were you?

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