It‘s difficult for me to think about this, let alone write about it. But there‘s no point pretending it isn‘t real or that it doesn‘t influence my life. The corona virus COVID-19 has me worried, because I have an autoimmune disease and the pandemic that has put people in hospitals and in the ground has reached the town where I live.
Actually, to say that I am worried or concerned is a ridiculously understated way to express what I‘m going through these days. When the virus started to pick up pace and officially transitioned from an epidemic to a pandemic, I was already worried. I knew that if it was really that aggressive, it wouldn‘t be long before it hit Europe.
The world is smaller. People are able to be half way across the world in a matter of hours these days. So it‘s no big gamble really to bet that a highly contagious, deadly virus will soon travel around the world within weeks of the first related death.
My family and I recently spent Christmas and New Year‘s 2019 with various relatives in America. While there, I got very sick. It was brutal, but because of my overall health, I‘ve been struggling ever since. I‘ve managed to catch every strain of flu and cold floating through town.
That means that for all of 2020 so far, I‘ve not experienced a single day where I felt well. I’ve been perhaps well enough to go to work despite feeling poorly, but I’ve not experienced a single day where a doctor would give me the green light. If I get sick with COVID-19, there is little doubt that it will knock me down.
This morning, as I was walking to work, I had difficulty breathing. I do sometimes have asthma attacks, but this felt different. I already have a cold at the moment (of course), but my stomach was in knots and breathing was a chore. I sent my apologies to those expecting me and made my way slowly home.
I‘ve been wheezing all day and my energy is low. While I‘m rather certain it isn‘t the deadly virus I‘ve got (it just feels like more of the same awfulness I‘ve been going through for months now), I can‘t deny that part of me is feeling downright frantic. I‘m suppressing that voice as best I can so that I can just function.
I don‘t know how functional I can really be though. People are currently struggling with the COVID-19 pandemic in the same hospital where my daughter was born. Somehow, I have to keep my head on and my wits about me.