Covid – The Sequel

20 Jun Covid – The Sequel

Written on 7 June and first published in the NZ Woman’s Weekly… 

This morning I bounced out of bed which is pretty terrific – there hasn’t been a lot of bouncing since Covid came to call.

This is Day 10. I have pants on and I’ve brushed my hair and teeth. I am upright and suspect what is going on in my head right now is “a thought process”. Haven’t had one of those for a while.

It’s an improvement on Day 8, officially the last day of my isolation. There was a cautious trip to the supermarket, worrying about breathing on people in case a week hadn’t been long enough, then dinner and straight to bed.

Covid is different for everyone – a friend hasn’t been able to shake her cough for weeks, yet I haven’t coughed once. Instead, I wake each morning with a headache which eases off during the day. This “headache” it is different from the one that feels like it’s in your brain – this feels like the bones in my skull are sore.

But let me tell you about Day 3 because, according to my doctor, that’s universally the worst day. I phone her because I am very full of Covid and there is a drug called Paxlovid I’d like to take but, she says, even with my risk factors I am not eligible and this makes me cry. Day 3 blues, apparently, like when you have a baby.  It also makes me so cross I almost explode the pulse oximeter on my finger.

I am dizzy and fuzzy of head, and decide these are two of the Covid Dwarves and ponder the rest. Dizzy and Fuzzy, also Thirsty and Sleepy and I can’t think of the others and I don’t know what seven is.

My eyeballs are hot and moving them hurts so reading feels hard. I watch bits of movies – not on the TV in the living room because the couch is so far away – but on my iPad in bed. At one point in the afternoon I close my eyes just for a minute and wake up when it is dark.

Day 4 and my iPad and I binge-watch and nap, though I have to turn off notifications and silence my phone because I cannot tune out noise or bear distractions and I am so grateful I do not have children right now. After a day of napping, I sleep for 12 hours.

There are times when I think I am cured and make plans to do things like change the sheets or do some work or go for a walk and THAT’S HOW IT GETS YOU and I am dizzy when I stand up so I don’t.

It takes me three hours to send two invoices and reply to urgent emails. The reason it takes so long is probably to do with the extraordinary number of typos I insert into each line.

Day 7 I manage a walk, masked up, staying as far away from other humans as I can while holding my plague-ridden breath. I am grateful I stocked up in preparation for this (not like a prepper, I don’t have guns) but I am even more grateful for friends who do a supermarket drop off, plus another friend who sends fruit and honey from her garden (not a grammatical error – she keeps a hive) along with a fist of ginger and some cake. And while I do not wish this virus on anyone, I promise I will return the favour.