As many of you have already heard, I tested positive for the coronavirus earlier this week. I am FINE and my story is not exciting. But I know that people have a lot of questions so I’ve attempted to answer them here.
You tested positive??
Yup. Remember in my last post, I mentioned being sick and said something to the effect of “I’m confident this is not corona?” Well, the joke was on me. I ended up getting tested last week and five days later (which was earlier this week), my results came back positive.
OMG, are you OK?
I’m almost totally fine. I’m a tiny bit congested and my sense of smell remains elusive. I’m still taking naps but come on… we’re all doing that, right?
What were your symptoms?
I had tightness in my chest from the very beginning, but as someone who struggles with anxiety, that was easy to dismiss. Soon after, I had severe head and body aches for two days. By day three, I felt much better but then I had the dry cough in addition to the tightness in my chest and a whole bunch of GI issues for several days. I also lost my sense of smell (anosmia) almost immediately but didn’t even realize that until I started reading about that being a symptom.
Last week, KJ made some beef thing for dinner one night and the kids were raving about it. They were all, “Dad, this is SO good!” and I was all, “Really? It doesn’t really taste like anything.”
I never had a fever. This is important because I’ve heard of people dismissing their symptoms because they don’t have a fever.
Where did you catch it?
Who knows? It might have been at the boys’ March Madness basketball tournament at CES or BMS or maybe the Hoopfest basketball tournament at one of several locations… possibly at SES while volunteering with the Little Mermaid show… or possibly at CVS or Stop & Shop or Fresh Market or… you get the point.
I do have one friend who reached out as a potential “point of contact” for both D and me. She did eventually test positive as well. I SO appreciated her giving me the heads up because it made me more diligent about paying attention to my own symptoms. But the truth is, there is absolutely no way to know for sure where I caught this virus. It was all over our town and it could have found me anywhere.
Except the gym. I definitely did NOT catch it at any gym. I can rule that out for sure. 😏
When did you get sick and what did you do?
I woke up on Wednesday, March 11th and felt “off.” I cancelled my appointments that day and haven’t seen anyone or left the house since then other than a few walks around our neighborhood (keeping the requisite distance from neighbors) and my drive to get tested (more below).
I feel really lucky that our town had an early awareness of this virus and began social distancing ahead of other parts of the country. I think that REALLY helped us take this thing very seriously from the beginning.
How did you manage to get tested?
I’m not sure why, but it was fairly easy for me. I booked an appointment online through greenwichdocs.com. I filled out a survey, sent in my insurance information and received an email confirming my appointment. I did not have a doctor’s referral. It’s possibly that I “slipped in” before the testing schedules got crazy? I’m not sure.
I arrived at the test site in Stamford at 6:00am in the pouring rain and waited 45 minutes while they set up their stations. Once they were set up, the testing took about three minutes. I showed my license through my car window and since they already had my insurance information, they waved me on. I pulled my car under a tent, was swabbed through my nose and that was it. I’ve heard that the test has been very uncomfortable for people. While it doesn’t feel great to have something stuck waaaaaay up your nose, it was super-fast and not painful. The results took five days.
Did you isolate from your family?
Not entirely. The days that I was really sick, I wasn’t getting out of bed anyway. But KJ brought me drinks and Tylenol. Once I was feeling better, I re-entered the mix. I was, and still am, obsessive about hand-washing and Lysol-wiping everything. I didn’t hug and kiss the kids but I also didn’t stay isolated in one room. With hindsight, I should have, and I feel super lucky that KJ and the kids haven’t showed any symptoms.
Were you freaked out when you got the results?
Why yes, yes, I was. I wasn’t shocked (because of the loss of the sense of smell) so I was actually surprised by how upset I was when I got the results. I received an email from Quest Diagnostics before I actually spoke to a doctor, so my fear may have been because the email was like “DANGER! DANGER! VIRUS DETECTED!”
What happens now?
I’m in contact with the doctor whose medical practice is handling the testing for our area. He FaceTimes me every couple of days to check in and talks about being in the “Corona Club,” which makes me laugh. He told me that as soon as I am 100% symptom-free, including the sense of smell returning, I will be retested. Once I receive two “negative” tests within a 24-hour period, I’m good to go (go where, exactly? Not sure). No one knows for sure if those of us who recover from the virus have the “immunity antibodies” but my fingers are crossed. Once that is confirmed, I will start grocery shopping for EVERYONE and donating blood and plasma like nobody’s business.
Are you relieved now that you’ve had it?
Um, sort of? I am EXTREMELY thankful that my case was mild and that – KNOCKING ON ALL THE WOOD – my family is OK. And if having it means that now I can help someone else, then yeah, that will be great.
Also, I guess it’s cool that I can check the mail without fear now. The other day, I told KJ to leave the pile of mail in the hallway because I didn’t want to touch it. He looked at me with a smirk and then said, “Um, you already have it. Are you afraid you’ll test SUPER-POSITIVE?” 🤦♀️
Have you dominated your time in quarantine?
If by “dominated,” you mean “taken lots of naps, completed 2 ½th puzzles and started to crochet a new blanket” than YES, I HAVE. But my closets remain unorganized, my garage is still messy, and the laundry’s not even done (can laundry ever really be done?).
How do you feel about social distancing?
Social distancing is kind of normal life for me. The fact that everyone else is participating now is just a bonus.
I’m KIDDING. I feel terrible for all the extroverts out there who are really struggling with lack of in-person human interaction. And I’m really bummed for my kids, who miss their friends a LOT. But I don’t get bored and that’s FINALLY something that feels like a good thing rather than an aptitude for laziness.
Also, I feel much less anxious now that everyone has more or less been home for over two weeks. It’s a sense of control that was missing the first few days. That said, I have discovered that I need to stay away from the news as much as possible. The horror stories coming out of the NYC hospitals as well as any/all of Trump’s press conferences put that tightness right back into my chest, so it’s best for me to avoid for now.
How’s homeschooling going?
Well, I’ve learned (relearned?) about things like the Stamp Act and PEMDAS and how to say fish in Spanish (either pez or pescado, depending on usage) so I’d say we’re winning!
Seriously, our teachers are incredibly awesome and are making it pretty easy for us. I think my kids may take an abnormal amount of “movement breaks” but I’m fine with that.
Did people really ask you all of these questions?
No. If I’m being honest, nobody asked me “Have you dominated your time in quarantine?” but I have heard most of these questions multiple times.
I wanted to share my experience because everyone is starved for information and curious about people’s experiences. The stories on the news are sad and depressing so I hope people find comfort in my story… fairly mild symptoms and good care.
Anything else you want to add?
Yes, a few things.
- I’d like to publicly and sincerely apologize for accidently hoarding hand sanitizer. When this was all starting, I couldn’t find any in the stores, so I ordered a bunch online. But then the shipping dates were all screwy, so I kept ordering more. Well, let’s just say that they all started arriving after quarantine and now I have… a lot. I have already reached out to the town and they’re going to pick up my extra supply on Monday. So hopefully my guilt will be alleviated soon.
- THANK YOU to all the doctors, nurses and medical staff on the front line of this thing. You’re all freaking heroes. (And custodians, grocery store employees, delivery/truck drivers, and pharmacy workers, as well.)
- THANK YOU to my family members for keeping us supplied with more food than we usually have in the house. LoriMac has done some grocery shopping for us and T&P delivered more prepared food that we could eat in a week. The Village is in full effect and we appreciate it.
Continue to stay home, everybody. We will get through this and you will all eventually get back to your normal, social lives and I will continue to stay home and we will all be happy again. Sending love.