Covid-19, You Really Got Me Now

Mayo Clinic, Cannon Falls, MN, 11.30.21

After over a year of severe anxiety, paranoia, frantic hand-washing and sanitizing, masking, social distancing, lockdowns, self-quarantining, and three vaccinations–Covid-19 finally got me. I’m on Day 11 of being sick with symptoms: a strange constant throbbing headache, low-grade fever, major congestion in my nose and head, scratchy/sore throat, fatigue, body aches, junk running down the back of my throat. Luckily, I’m not coughing so I think (hope) my lungs are OK. I have a little cough here and there due to all of the drainage in my throat, but it’s barely anything. And I’m not having any problems breathing. But this awful throbbing, full, sickish feeling in my head is driving me crazy. Tylenol isn’t doing much to help it.

I still can’t believe that I finally got it, even though I know I shouldn’t be that surprised. Minnesota’s cases and hospitalizations right now are shockingly high. Thanksgiving week and maybe the week before, I believe, we were the worst state in the entire country, which blows my mind. I asked a doctor recently why, and she said it’s because of all of the unvaccinated people who are mostly outside of the Twin Cities metro area. I looked at the case numbers and statistics again today for Minnesota, and only 62% of all people here are fully vaccinated. That’s ridiculous and not nearly enough. This infuriates me, but I won’t go into that right now.

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Covid-19 Vaccination #3!

August 18, 2021

I got my third Pfizer vaccination two weeks ago yesterday at a local CVS. It was super fast and easy and I was relieved to get it. My first set of vaccinations were back in March, and with the nasty Delta variant that’s causing an explosion of cases and hospitalizations, I had been growing more and more nervous about if or how much I was still protected. I’ve also been holding off on going back on my Humira until after getting a third vaccination (plus a two-week wait). I just really do not want to be on any immunosuppressant medications right now with Delta running rampant and there are still so many people who refuse to get vaccinated or follow safety protocols.

Speaking of the anti-vaxxers and anti-maskers, I am furious with them. I’m disgusted at their stubborn selfishness and unwillingness to DO WHAT THEY’RE SUPPOSED TO DO to protect the health, safety, and well-being of us all. I’m so tired of listening to people, grown adults, yelling about their “rights being taken away,” and spouting off about ridiculous conspiracy theories and dangerous disinformation. If you live in a society, rights are shared. And nobody has the “right” to make me or anyone else sick or dead from Covid-19.

I’ve been saying this since Day 1: Covid-19 is a PUBLIC HEALTH ISSUE and NOT a political one. It shouldn’t be a political issue at all, but it’s too late. It’s become heavily politicized. So while people continue to refuse getting vaccinated, burn masks, and protest against schools trying to keep their students and staff safe, people are continuing to suffer terribly and die. And now it’s not just older people or those with underlying health conditions. No, it’s young healthy people. It’s kids. My mind is constantly blown by all of this; nothing makes sense. And Covid-19 is DEADLY. It’s nothing to play around with. Why don’t people get this?

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An International Pandemic Treaty and Human Rights

This is an interesting and important read via Human Rights Watch.

An International Pandemic Treaty Should Center on Human Rights

“The right to health—Most of the world lacks covid-19 diagnostics, medicines, and vaccines. A new treaty should uphold the right to physical and mental health, and acknowledge the right of everyone to the benefits of scientific progress and its applications, including through intellectual property waivers.”

“The covid-19 pandemic starkly widened inequalities. We must seize this opportunity to reassert the principle of human equality, which must never be compromised; draw on lessons learned from the past year, and chart a better future.” 

Darkness Into Light

Photo: Kinsale, Ireland by Thérèse O’Leary-Dinneen

My good, old friend Thérèse sent me a video of Pieta’s “Darkness Into Light” annual charity event a bit ago from Ireland (link is at the bottom of this post). Pieta House is an Irish organization that helps with the prevention of suicide and self-harm and provides free mental health counseling to people in need. Thérèse was there in Kinsale last night with all of the beautiful lights in the dark. I wish I could’ve been there. I’m crying a bit after watching the video. I should have lit a candle myself last night, too.

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Days of Future Passed

“Language gives us the power to change ourselves and others by communicating our experiences, helping us to define what we know, and finding a common sense of meaning.”Bessel van der Kolk

During the last two days I’m proud to say that I’ve somehow managed to drag myself outside and sit on the grass reading a book again. It’s been SO LONG! And honestly, it feels great. I must make myself do a bit of this each day, if possible.

The Body Keeps the Score: Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of Trauma by Bessel van der Kolk

Immunocompromised & Covid-19 Variants

WHY are we immunocompromised/immunosuppressed patients not being vaccinated ASAP?! I read a similar article about this from NPR last month: “Extraordinary Patient Offers Surprising Clues to Origins of Coronavirus Variants”

“We should give the best shot we can, both literally and figuratively, to protect this population” –Dr. Adam Lauring, a virologist and infectious disease physician at the University of Michigan

Covid-19 Results

NEGATIVE!

Whew, right? I was somewhat relieved but I was still anxious about possibly having Covid-19 because the paperwork I received after the test said that even if you get a “Negative” you can still actually be positive, and that you need to stay careful for another week or so. I had also heard and read things about “false negatives” and people needing to be tested more than once–so I wasn’t that relieved, actually.

So despite apparently annoying everyone, I continued to try to be extra-safe (wearing a mask inside, wiping down surfaces, sticking to 1-2 rooms, etc.). This is a very small house and I’ve been terrified of endangering the other two high-risk people who live here.

Anyway, more time has gone by and I haven’t developed any symptoms, nor have the people I live with. I think I’m OK and not contagious now? If I were an asymptomatic person, that is. It’s all very confusing and the information seems to be changing daily. I know there’s the 14-days “thing,” but that doesn’t really answer my asymptomatic/carrier questions.

Anyway, WHOOO!! I THINK I’m in the clear.

I think.

I think?