I didn’t want to share on social media before, but I have shared privately with friends. Today I decided I was tired of hiding and hoping my story will be a warning to others.
In the past six months:
I landed in the hospital because my chest pain was so bad that it required IV pain killers and my fever required IV fluids.
I’ve had pneumonia twice. My lung capacity has been reduced because of lung fibrosis (damage).
I’ve had pleurisy.
I’ve had inflammation of the cartilage in my rib cage.
I’ve had so much brain fog. I haven’t thought straight for 6 months. I constantly have to go back and do things twice.
I can’t drink alcohol because my liver is inflamed.
I have had chest pain and shortness of breath every single day.
I can only walk for exercise. Anything more and I cannot breathe normally. Before March 16, I used to do spin classes 3 times a week.
My resting heart rate is 101. It used to be 55.
Fast forward to today. I just left the cardiologist because I’m going to have to have two different echocardiograms and a MRI to determine the severity of my heart damage.
COVID is scary. COVID can cause an inflammatory response that doesn’t land you on a vent but can be life changing. I would be characterized as having a “mild to moderate” case of coronavirus.
My cardiologist is hopeful, but doesn’t know what to do about me. It’s not in my head, he says! I’m his tenth patient in September who has come to him with these long term symptoms. Average stats of “long haulers” as we are called is 44 (me!) a woman (me!) and previously fit/healthy and no preexisting conditions (me!)
I go on with daily life, baking bread, helping the kids, wiping down counters, because that’s what you do. You can’t lie in bed forever. Doctor tells me I’m full of antibodies (I hope I still am) and I’m not contagious. I have to live the life I’m dealing with now.
Anyway, I share not to get any sympathy. I share because I feel people are getting fatigued of hearing about COVID-19 and have moved on. I get it. It’s exhausting. But I want people to still continue to take this monster seriously.