Joel Always one syllable, sometimes "@jayroh"

Covid, Finally ... I Guess?

03 Dec 2022

After 9871 days the inevitable happened and Covid-19 got Sara and I. If we’re completely honest, there’s almost no way people are going to escape this thing. The opportunity to extinguish it, in the time of social media, misinformation, and buffoonery, had come and gone in a zeptosecond. So, that leaves folks like us to be ultra-vigilant with precautions, get the vaccine as soon as we could, get boosted whenever allowed and/or recommended, and be sensible when it comes to packed indoor spaces with people we don’t know2.

And that last point is where Covid had its opportunity to nip us - “Gotcha bitch!”

We’d seen Boyz II Men in concert several times in the past (Yes, that’s right. Those Boyz II Men.) So when we saw that they were playing at Foxwoods the night after Thanksgiving, we said “Sure! Why not? Let’s go!” and made our way to Connecticut. It was a fun night. We got some take-out from one of the casino restaurants, ate it in our hotel room, walked around a bit, had a drink at a bar while we waited for our meal. And then went to the show, which was pretty great. 112 and Dru Hill opened up for the main act. I know maybe 3 songs between the two of them so 🤷, whatever. Fine. Boyz II Men are great live, though so - go see them if you’re a fan. After the show, we made our way back to the room and called it a night. It was late. We’re old. We’re terrible at “the gambling”.

I realize it’s a fool’s game to try and figure out “who” and “where” and “how”, but humor me. We had been wearing masks the entire time we were inside. That leaves me with 2 possibilities:

  1. The 15 minutes at the bar where we both had a single drink. Masks off.
  2. The concert where a few thousand people were screaming at the top of their lungs for 2+ hours. Masks still on – mostly!

Again, a fool’s game. It doesn’t really matter. We’d made it through the weekend feeling fine until Sara started feeling off later on Sunday, early Monday. On Monday afternoon, while I was on a conference call, she knocked on my office door, opened it and exclaimed that the home test she just took was positive. Covid: “gotcha bitch!”. I still tested negative at that time. Thus began the home quarantine scramble - masks around the clock, doors closed, me sleeping on the office pull-out couch, G spending all his time at home in his room, door closed. We’d been together 24/7 for days so it was inevitable that I would be the next domino, and I was. I started feeling crappy Tuesday night, when I ultimately tested positive.

Mind you, through all this, G has tested negative every day and has not once exhibited any symptoms. Covid is weird. Sure, we’ve done everything in our power to keep him safe from it, but still. Bizarre. Kids are exceptionally resilient.

Lastly, what was it like for me? In a phrase, “exceptionally uncomfortable”. Flu-like? Bad cold? There’s no way around it, the experience was shitty. Fever for 3 days and nights – Tuesday night through Thursday night and into Friday, when I must have sweat out the last of the worst of it. I did not get a decent night’s sleep until Friday night. Chest congestion was bad, sinus pressure, terrible cough, chills, muscle aches. Sense of smell and taste were completely gone through the worst parts but that could be chalked up to the congestion in my head instead of the covid side effects. I can (sort of) taste things again, albeit somewhat muted.

Looking back on this experience (and most of the reason I am writing this, because I would like to refer to my own thoughts if [and when] this happens again) I am left with two thoughts. First, we are exceptionally fortunate and lucky to have scientists who can create the vaccines and therapies that help keep the worst at bay. That’s all we can hope for at this point – just dull the worst of it! And the shots did the job. With my own, and my family’s, medical history I can’t imagine what sort of catastrophe would await me in the absence of a vaccine. Second, while I do not want to get this again, I hope the near-term future affords me the opportunity to enjoy the next month or two without fear of catching it. Antibodies, and all that.

I’d like to be able to say “Wellp, glad that’s over! Done with Covid”. But, dear reader, that too is a fool’s game.

1: “987 days” because we consider Mar 13, 2020 as the day Covid shut everything down for us. It was the Friday we received an email from our son’s daycare stating that they would be shutting down “for the next 2 weeks”. Haha - “the next 2 weeks”! Oh man, that is rich! Anyway, 987 days between Mar 13, 2020 and Nov 25, 2022.

2: Like raw-dogging rides on the MBTA. #Sorrynotsorry but I am never riding the T without a mask again. No thank you.

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