I still haven’t seen the movie My Left Foot. It was released in 1989. It won Oscars. Everybody said it was great.
I should have seen it.
But I haven’t.
Thus it should come as no surprise that I held off COVID for more than two years, choosing only this week to test positive. I am a late adopter.
The first sign that something was up was Tuesday night: I felt tired and achy, and then, through the night, had a constant cycle of sleep-wake-have to pee (a lot). I woke up feeling really hit-by-a-truck achy, with a headache and chills and, most troubling, a noticeable dip in my mental acuity: it felt like my brain had one hand tied behind its back.
Because I’m in the higher-risk “over 50” category, I was eligible for a PCR test, and was able to book one for 9:35 a.m. I had my positive result in less than an hour. It was jarring; not a surprise given my symptoms, but after so many negative rapid and PCR tests over the years, I’d grown used to a perverse feeling of superhero immunity.
Yesterday was a write-off: I slept more than I didn’t, got remote help from L. when I proved mentally unable to arrange food delivery, and cobbled together an upstairs-downstairs isolation plan for the household.
Olivia rapid-tested negative, and so I’m washing my hands with a new tenacity and doing everything I can to stay well away from her. She is texting me frequently with concerns about how the house only has a single shower.
Today my brain is mostly back—enough, at least, to allow me to reflect on yesterday, to undertake basic tasks like ordering grocery delivery, and even do a little work. I still have a headache. And I’m still sleeping a lot. But I’m okay.
I’d been so afraid of catching COVID for so long that, symptoms and risks aside, there is a kind of relief that comes with all this.
I’m in isolation until Tuesday—in my compromised state yesterday it took me forever to decrypt the How long do I isolate? page from Public Health: if there was ever a place where a handy web widget would be especially handy, it’s on that page.
After freaking out and insisting that Olivia needed to isolate as well, today I had a very helpful phone consult with Cindy at Public Health, and she let me know that as long as Olivia and I are staying isolated from each other, and she remains symptom-free and testing negative, Olivia can go about life as normal. That will come as a great relief to her. And to me.
I’m enormously grateful for my privilege: I have a large house, enough food, friends and family to help, and relatively mild symptoms. I even presciently took back a loaned air conditioner so that these warm bed-bound afternoons are comfortable. I am, give or take, Canadian case number 3,935,609; I know that I will fare better, and be more comfortable, than many who came before me.