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Happy survival Easter! |

Sunday Lifestyle

Happy survival Easter!

Barbara C. Gonzalez - The Philippine Star

Happy Easter, everyone!

That’s a good start coming from someone who missed writing last week’s column because she was sick with — guess what? Covid, of course. To think that I had just read the previous week that the epidemic was over, that we could probably give up wearing those horrible masks that get in the way of breathing properly, that the US Supreme Court had ruled against forcing people to vaccinate against Covid, meaning the senator son of Bobby Kennedy, once my crush among the Kennedy brothers, had won his case. He was against mandatory vaccination.

We underwent a two-year pandemic. We were forced to receive an anti-Covid vaccination and a booster. We were visited at our flat and vaccinated because my husband could not leave the apartment in a wheelchair as he preferred to stay home. So we survived until the end when suddenly all three of us — my husband, his caregiver and I — got it.

I don’t know how or where it began. I started to feel slightly strange, like feeling unbalanced, with very slight dizziness around Thursday. I thought it was the weather that had turned so inordinately hot. But I had made an appointment with a fellow who was so impressed by my School of Innovation column he had to come and meet me. I walked to the nearest coffee shop, met him, then walked home. If you get Covid, W., I apologize for giving it to you. I did not know I had it.

When I got home, Andrei, our caregiver, told me my husband had a temperature of 38.8 degrees Celsius. That was pretty high. Andrei said he also had fever and wondered if I had one, too. I had my temperature taken and it was 38.1. I took some anti-flu medicine and went to bed. But the next day my husband did not look well. His fever remained unchanged. My fever had lowered to 37.1, as did Andrei’s. Nevertheless, I decided to call his son and ask him to drive us to the nearest hospital. That’s where we discovered my husband and his caregiver had Covid. I took the swab test but didn’t have to wait for the results. I already knew I had Covid since we all had a bad cough. My husband and Andrei were confined. I went home before the results came out. I quarantined myself alone at home. It wasn’t bad. I had no fever but I had a bad cough and I felt weak, so  I couldn’t do anything.

I told my son I have Covid. He had Covid. He sent me the medicine that had healed him and his family. I was alone from Friday to Wednesday, time spent watching K-dramas on TV. Every day I would talk to the doctors about my husband. The doctor told me I should remain quarantined until today, Easter Sunday, but I will be able to go out tomorrow because by then our family’s Covid should be over. All our medicines will have worked. Our coughs will be gone.

This had to happen to us on Holy Week, when I don’t know which restaurants are open and which are closed. On Holy Saturday we had no electricity in the entire building from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. because it was the time they chose to check all the electricals. How did we live through that? We did during the pandemic. I suppose we just have to. No air-conditioning… It’s okay. I just had to open all the windows and rely on ordinary hand fans. The one secret to our lives now is survival. We need to survive.

What have I learned?

One, no one is exempt from disease. No one knows the source of the affliction either. Maybe I got it from the Salcedo market where I go every Saturday to buy food for the week. But I have been going every Saturday and this is the first time we got Covid.  Maybe it’s the supermarkets I go to afterwards. But it’s the same routine. So who can say where the Covid came from? It just likes to sneak in when least expected.

Two, take the medicines faithfully. My son sent me Molnupiravir. I took that faithfully until the bottle was finished, plus my favorite cough medicine Fluimucil, anti-flu, vitamin C with Zinc, Biogesic for all the other aches and pains.

Three, rest and watch TV and fall asleep at whatever hour.

Four, pray always. Talk to God. Ask for help, for comfort, for safety, for caring, for anything. Thank Him and His Mother for everything, including the extra expenses, hospital bills, higher caregiver costs. Show them your love and your trust. Ask them to protect those who were accidentally exposed to you from getting Covid.

In the end, this is life. I am grateful I got it, grateful I survived it. It wasn’t as bad as I thought it might be. We’re all still alive today.

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