Thursday, April 9, 2020

Will You Still (Bug) Me Tomorrow?

This Coronavirus suffers from an identity crisis.  I battled it more hard core in this last week.  I tell ya, there is something for everyone in this vivacious little pathogen.  Variety is his key.  Getting bored with the chills?  Well he has some nice jabbing chest pains for you. How do you feel about headaches?  Oh and sitchoassdown!-extreme-fatigue, that don't stop to punk rock.  He also offers constants, like morning nausea from the moment you wake each day followed by gut punches.  Various body aches will surprise you at every turn.  Is it 120 degrees in here or are you in hell?  Then there's the blast chiller that makes it feel minus 35, better dress in layers.  The pressure pain in your chest provides that terror factor.   And then there is the multiple endings.  You think it may be over but you are so wrong.  And fever dreams are a big thing!  
Ham Salad & Cheese Open-Faced Sandwich with Apple & Tomato
Shortness of breath has been a mainstay for me throughout, about three weeks starting from noticeable with exercise to bent over gasping, but it always went away.  This isn't the flu where you can lay in bed and sleep it off, instead you must be the guard at the gate armed to fight.  I woke up believing it had to be on its way out, that I'm through the worst days.  I felt like the virus had abandoned attacks in 70% of my body but the shortness of breath came on strong straight out of the gate and just from sitting.  We didn't want to bother the doctors knowing full well everyone is overworked and busy with emergencies. You get about 6 texts from the city a day telling you if you're sick, stay home and deal with it basically unless it's an absolute life or death emergency because of our overtaxed systems.  I finally make a video doctor appointment, something they made available for this situation and honestly, if I had known I would have done earlier.  As soon as I describe my symptoms he immediately recognizes all the strangeness and verifies what I already knew, but decides we should both come in to check oxygen levels, vitals and while there, get tested to be counted. He confesses most will get this thing in the city eventually due to the density, there's almost no getting around it.  He sounds tired but is very kind. He goes on to explain he doesn't trust the bug anymore because he's seen too many things, the most troubling one, that it goes away and then resurfaces with a vengeance to take you down.  And that went straight to my gut, because I thought about friends and family, people with underlying conditions, the elderly and who we're now hearing are dying into the hundreds overnight each night alone in their homes.  It's heart-wrenching.
Going forward we really need mass testing now in NYC and the new blood tests that will tell us who had the virus and who is now safe to reenter the job space.  Those essential tools have to be in place before we could possibly open up the floodgates again here.  Also to know if we can get this thing multiple times in a season, unlike others where we build up immunity.  Because many of us had the regular flu already this year around January and February, and wonder if possibly it was COVID-19.  I say that because I became sick in February with a horrible sore throat and knock down flu that came on so quickly and I struggled with shortness of breath for weeks after.  It was only after riding my bike and hauling ass at work but very uncommon for me to get winded so easily.
I was so relieved after seeing a doctor that I made these open-faced ham salad with apple, tomato and swiss cheese toasties for dinner.  COVID cooking can still happen, you just have to move super slow, like a sloth.

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