I walked in the door to an unfamiliar sight in recent memory. My landlord/friend was parked at his desk wrapped up in a sweatshirt and blanket. He just got home from a seven-week business trip in Nevada. However, he did not look good.
*cough cough* “I got Covid.” First words out of his mouth.
Fuck. I somehow managed to dodge this bastard of a virus for the last two years. It now infiltrated my bunker. It was only a matter of time.
Three days later, it hit. That slow, sluggish feeling crept up. My head metaphorically expanded to that of a Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade balloon (see below for reference). My voice grew raspy as if I was a longtime smoker.
Thankfully, this was the extent of my symptoms. I heard the horror stories obviously. People with respiratory issues. Losing your sense of smell and taste. Not being able to get out of bed for weeks. I knew people who were hospitalized, experienced long-term symptoms, or who passed away from complications.
My attitude would play a huge part in my recovery. First off, gratitude. I was so thankful that I did not have any severe symptoms. I luckily contracted a mild case. I heard my poor buddy down the hallway coughing up a lung for a week straight.
I saw this as an opportunity. I looked at the silver lining. This provided me with the perfect excuse to lay in bed, sleep, and relax without interference from the outside world. In a way, it was a five-day staycation. I joked saying that this was God’s way of telling me to rest.
Also, I honed in on my self-care. I knew the symptoms might linger for some time after testing positive. During that time, I watched my diet. I stayed hydrated. I even went through a bit of a coffee detox since I did not have the ingredients nor energy to make any.
With the lasting symptoms in mind, I took a different approach returning to work than I had in previous situations. I eased my way back in rather than going in gung-ho. I steadily increased my hours back up over the course of three or four days without overdoing it.
Again, I am not downplaying the contraction of COVID-19. It is a serious, and potentially dangerous illness. However, keeping in mind what I could control (my attitude, my habits, and my self-care) eased the impact.
-The Caring Counselor