I WAS kept in a room for more than two weeks, with only a mobile phone and some books to keep me company. PHOTOGRAPH COURTESY OF UNSPLASH/ANTHONY TRAN
It started with chills on a Tuesday evening sometime in August. Migraine, colds and fever came the next day. I had hunches I was possibly sick with Covid-19 when my symptoms remained for three days. I couldn’t get out of bed or hear myself talk because of my clogged nose and raspy throat. Worse, I couldn’t even lift my head because it was pounding like hell.
But nothing was more painful than when my mom woke me up to tell me that my dad had tested positive of the coronavirus. I cried.
I got myself tested in three days. The results came via a phone call from our city government’s health department the following week. Now that I’m recalling it, I could compare that moment to a scene often shown in horror movies when the main character has to answer a terrifying call. My experience was almost like it, except that the person on the other end called to confirm my worst suspicions.
“‘Wag kayo mag-alala ma’am, mawawala din po ‘yan,” said the disembodied voice.
GETTING through Covid-19 is a long journey.
PHOTOGRAPH COURTESY OF UNSPLASH/PRATEEK KATYAL
My anxiety heightened. I felt even more scared. What do I need to do? Will I be taken into an isolation facility? Will I be able to sleep there? What will happen to my dad? I just knew that the risk was high. I cried some more.
My dad and I opted for home isolation. For more than two weeks in my bedroom, I had only my mobile phone and some books. Most of the time, I just slept because my anxiety easily got triggered by any news related to Covid.
I ate less than what I usually did. A few spoonfuls was okay. Sometimes, a mouthful was enough to make me feel full.
We also opted for home remedy. Steam inhalation, ginger tea, vitamins and warm drinking water. Name it, my dad and I had all of it.
We both recovered. When my dad received the okay signal, he got up and went back to work at the hospital like nothing happened. Me? I was scared to go out. How will I know if the person I’m sitting beside in the bus isn’t infected? It’s a scary thought, but also a highly possible scenario. And I still fear for it every day.
I just have to call myself lucky because I got through what I could call my most dreadful experience. Now, I’m living my second chance at life.
If I can survive the virus, I know that you can, too.
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