It took over two years with one scare, but the inevitable has come. I finally got COVID-19.
I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised, really. Who would have thought that attending a large event, surrounded by lots of mask-less drunks would put me at risk at getting COVID? I’ll admit, it crossed my mind more than once before, during, and after the event and I only have myself to blame. Of course there is no way ever to know for certain; I could have as easily got it from the woman who was sat next to me on the train or a bar tender the night before.
After starting to feel a bit woozy a few days after the potential exposure, my brain instantly jumped to the worse conclusion, as it so often does. This time, however, the concern was well-founded and as soon as my temperature broke the 37 mark, I decided it’d be best to take the test. I am a hypochondriac and in some odd way, the positive result is actually a relief. It’s an odd way to think, but the logic of a hypochondriac is a mystery that I have yet to really come to grips with. A new mole? Yup, that’s cancer. A cough? You guessed it. Cancer.
Thankfully I’ve never had to have that chlamydia discussion with someone I’ve slept with, but I imagine the feeling is somewhat similar (but with far less blame attached) and now I feel the obligation to contact those with whom I’ve had close contact to encourage them to take a test. That guy who was sitting next to me on the train, though? Sorry, mate. You’ll just have to discover that yourself. There’s a bit of guilt there, but what can I do?
To anyone who has had COVID, I sympathise. To anyone who hasn’t yet, congratulations. Try and keep it that way! I suppose I can say that in my own experience, the effects of it are not that bad. And I feel some hesitation in writing that, as I am fully aware of how many people have died due to, or ‘with’ COVID and some of the footage that I’ve seen online is truly horrific. I am an asthmatic and I considered myself to be in a ‘high risk’ group, but thankfully as I write this, locked away in my study (fully furnished with a futon), the symptoms are somewhere between a cold and the flu. It’s not terrible, but it’s certainly not something one can ignore.
I have a particularly bad guilt complex and still feel guilty about tipping over a big box of sweets when I was little, forcing my mum to pay for it all (as far as I remember it did only cost £1 but still – those were the days). Or when I stole some putty from a supermarket magazine when I was around four or so. Sure, I was a kid, and it’s crazy that I can still feel a bit guilty about that, but imagine having that your mind and now having to worry about spreading a virus that is potentially fatal to many. It certainly puts things into perspective, but in all honesty, I’d rather worry about sweets and putty from decades ago than a virus.
It’s funny how generally speaking the attitude towards the virus has changed so much over the years. I remember when there were murmurs of it back in February 2020, I was planning to go on a business trip to China a few months later. I was openly concerned with my boss at the time, who shrugged it off initially until things really went crazy and the event in China was cancelled and worldwide travel suddenly came to a halt. I think that’s what I was thinking at the time and, well, I’m certainly living with it now.
I know plenty of people who have had it and now the word blasé comes to mind compared to how freaked out everyone was about it the past. The time when people were clamouring for masks and toilet paper for fear of shortages now seems a world away. Luckily that didn’t carry on for too long and if anything it is more amusing now than it was at the time. Of course, I don’t blame people for reacting in that way, it’s just an interesting comparison to make.
I am not sure what I hoped to achieve by writing this but it feels good to get it all down. Now I guess I will just while away my time until my body recovers. I only hope that the symptoms don’t get worse… I can say that at least I haven’t lost my appetite!
Thank you for reading, as always.
Get well soon Jeremy. Anne
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