Life with Covid19 - Patient Diary
Carol and Ed live in my little community of New Paltz, NY. They teach locally and are active members in town. Like all of us earlier this month they were just living their lives. On March 15th Ed started to feel flu-like symptoms and and March 18th Carol followed suit. Ed got his Covid19 positive test results back on March 19, Carol 2 days later. Five days into their treatment I delivered a pair of our Janesi Comfort robes along with some vegan mac and cheese in an effort to support my community in the same fashion that it had sustained my family a year ago. In case you or your loved ones are dealing with a new Covid19 diagnosis here is one real world account of what the ordeal was like for Carol and Ed. Of course these are two examples of what may well be millions of very different presenting sicknessness across the US. We hope any exposure you might encounter is mild.
Carol and Ed were generous enough to give us this quick review of what it was like to use our robes while still recovering from Covid19:
"The robes have been a lifesaver for us. They are light, very easy to get on and off, have large pockets for tissues and other paraphernalia we need, and are extremely comfortable. I’ve worn mine every day since I received it. I will continue to wear it as my bathrobe of choice even after I recover. It’s that comfortable."
This is their story:
Hi folks. I have gone back and forth about sharing this, but I think it’s important. We are real people who are getting this virus, and we need a stronger federal response. It is a crisis of epic proportions. The federal response is an ongoing disaster. A huge shout out to our local New Paltz and Ulster County agencies who have been simply amazing, and to our health care providers who have been proactive in getting this diagnosed. And to Gov. Cuomo who has stepped into the vast void to provide the kind of leadership we need right now. We are very grateful to live in New York.
Ed and I are doing ok at the moment. Fever and cough are manageable, and since we basically live like we are in quarantine under normal circumstances anyway (lol), this is actually the least troublesome aspect of this whole thing.
Anyway, I hope this article helps reduce people’s anxiety. The federal government may be a mess, but state and local governments seem to be doing all the right things. We can take comfort in that.
3/21 second post
Coronavirus update: my ‘presumptive’ diagnosis is now a confirmed diagnosis. I have tested positive for COVID-19. The nurse actually called me from her cell phone (from home) at 8:00 this morning. So both Ed and I are confirmed as having the virus. It was a bit of a gut punch to hear it. We assumed I had it, but it was still kind of a shock to the system. I have alerted the Ulster DOH and, interestingly, Because Ed and I spend so much time together, the people with whom I have been in contact have already been notified lol. ?ﾟﾏﾻ
The encouraging news for now is that we’re both doing ok. Fever and cough are manageable, which is good. Ed’s been sick since Sunday, so he’s had it almost a week. Hopefully he’s on the downside of it. I’ve had it since Wednesday, so I might have a little more to go through.
We want to thank everyone for their kindness, compassion and generosity. We are overwhelmed by all of the support we are receiving and want you to know that we appreciate and value it more than you could ever know. It’s a scary time, but we will get thru this for sure.
Much love to you all and thank you again.
So many people are in dire straits right now. Ed and I are grateful to have a wonderful, cozy home, a beautiful backyard, and each other. My heart goes out to all those who don’t have the blessings we do. Please keep them in mind next time you want to complain about being shut in.
Edit: this in no way minimizes the very real problem of mental health issues which will surely come as a result of social distancing. Please reach out to your health provider if you experience anxiety, depression or have problems coping. And reach out to each other (remotely) and check in with each other. We’re all in this together. Love to all.
3/22 second post
Hi folks. I posted this on my community FB group, and people thought it was helpful, so I’m posting here as well. Quick update. Ed and I are doing ok this morning. Fevers are down. Ed’s cough is about the same but mine is worse today. Still manageable though. No shortness of breath. Thank goodness.
We got a visit from a nurse with the Ulster County Department of Health yesterday afternoon. She brought over written orders of quarantine which we had to sign (I’m posting them here). Basically the orders say that we are to remain at our property until they have cleared us to leave (basically 14 days). She did say that we could go outside in our backyard (thank goodness). She gave us a sheet where we have to track our temperature and symptoms twice a day. She also said that people from the DOH would be checking in and that we would have to test negative before we were released from quarantine.
Folks, this is serious stuff. If you’re not taking it seriously, and not social distancing and sheltering in place, now is the time to do it. We have to stop the spread. Otherwise our health care systems are going to be overwhelmed. Is it an inconvenience? Yes. But so you want to have to sign orders of quarantine? And more importantly, do you want to contract this virus? It’s not worth the risk. Stay home.
Lots of love and a huge thank you to everyone. Your support and compassion have helped us during this scary, surreal time. We are more grateful than you could ever know.
A very happy and snowy Monday morning to all of you beautiful people!!
Ed and I are holding steady this morning. Both of our temps are up somewhat, which is to be expected as this virus does its thing on the body, but our coughs seem to be holding steady and not worsening, thank goodness. We were able to get a decent night’s sleep. All in all, little change from yesterday, which is a good thing!
We want to express yet again our unending gratitude and appreciation for all of the love and support everybody has shown to us. It means more than we could possibly express. God bless you all.
Good morning everybody. Quick update: Ed and I are holding steady. Fevers up a little, and my cough and congestion is getting worse but still manageable. Ed is on day 9 and I’m on day 6. It’s really a waiting game at this point.
Much love to everybody for your continued support and compassion. Please, please stay home. There is no other way to slow this thing down. Do NOT listen to idiots like the jerk in the WH who are downplaying this. It is dangerous and it is running rampant, especially in NY. Is it inconvenient? Absolutely. Is it necessary? Absolutely. Just stay home.
I love Carol because she also slips in little gems like this link when commenting on how she stays sane:
Good morning, all. Well, we had a fun night. My coughing got worse over the course of yesterday, and I called my doc at dinnertime, who advised me to go to the hospital to get a chest x-ray. Ed drove me over to Vassar Hospital and dropped me off at the ER (he couldn't come in with me, obviously). The have a big tent set up outside for triage, and once I told them I was a positive COVID-19 patient, they whisked me right through to a special area where they took my vitals, checked me in, and brought me to a room in a special area of the ER just for COVID-19 patients (aren't I lucky!!)
I was there from about 6:30 until almost 1AM, but I am happy to report that my chest x-ray was clear and they sent me home with instructions on what to do for the cough (basically, hydrate, hydrate, hydrate - and use my albuterol when necessary). They told me that if I get short of breath I am to come right back.
They were very efficient, protected pretty well by PPE, and seem to have a handle on things right now. Good to know. The doctor I saw was a young woman from NYC who had a very critical family member with COVID-19. My heart goes out to her and all of the medical personnel dealing with this and having family members who are sick, and who are at great risk of getting sick themselves.
Ed's on Day 10 and I'm on Day 7. Ed's fevers are still up somewhat, and his cough seems to be getting worse, but he's holding his own. Fingers crossed that things stay that way!
Love to all and, again, thanks to everyone for their love, support, drop-offs of food and supplies, and offers of shopping. It is very much appreciated!
Good morning, beautiful people! Quick update - things are pretty much status quo. Our fevers are down, and our coughs are manageable. Mine is definitely worse but it is productive, which is keeping all of that fluid from staying in the lungs. Which is a good thing. Ed is on Day 11, and I'm on Day 8. Hopefully Ed is over the worst of it, and I'm going into my second week, so fingers crossed that it stays manageable. We're both feeling extremely fatigued and tire easily, which is to be expected as the virus makes its way through our bodies.
Again, I would like to thank the many people who have sent us well wishes, prayers, healing thoughts, and gifts. We are so grateful and overwhelmed, and feel very supported and loved. Please, please stay home. Isolate. Don't go out if you don't absolutely have to for food or medications. If you feel ill, call your health care provider - don't show up at an ER because the hospitals are becoming overwhelmed. Be smart and be safe! Love to everybody.
Good morning, friends. Ed and I are hanging in there lol. Ed’s fever remains down, and his cough is under control. He’s fatigued but otherwise seems to be on the mend. My cough got worse this morning. It is pretty severe and actually woke me up. I can’t take a deep breath without coughing. But I am not out of breath or short of breath, and the cough is productive, so I’m not panicking lol. My fever remains normal, and besides the cough and fatigue, I feel ok.
At this point it’s a waiting game. We just have to weather the storm until we feel better. Your continued support and well wishes is helping us do that, and for that we are eternally grateful.
Hi everyone. Quick update. Today seems to be a crummy day. I’m feeling very fatigued, have a lot of coughing, inability to breath deeply so my breathing is a bit shallow, and my nausea and tummy troubles have returned. I have been told by several wonderful folks who have gone through this that this kind of thing is to be expected. So I’m taking it very easy today and resting with Charlie (our dog) at my side keeping me company. Ed seems good - his fevers are down and coughing is minimal. I’m so grateful for that.
I will repeat my public service announcement: please take this seriously and stay home. You don’t want to get this. You don’t want to infect others if you have it and are asymptomatic. You don’t want to unknowingly spread it and put our health care workers at further risk. Just stay home. Love to all.
Good afternoon all. So sorry for the delay in my daily update. This morning was a bit rough. Lots of coughing and tightness/burning in my chest. Slight fever. But, around 2pm I started to feel a bit less constriction in my chest, and my cough seems a bit more manageable. My oxygen saturation is 98% which is very good. Don’t know if it will last but right now I’m feeling a bit better. It helps that Ed and I are listening to Bach’s St. Matthew Passion which is much beloved to both of us. Bach always makes everything more bearable.
Edit: rudely I said nothing about Ed. He continues to improve. Temp normal and coughing minimal. We think he is definitely over the hump. Thank God.
Hope everyone is having a quiet, pleasant Sunday. Much love to everyone. You are all very dear to us. Stay safe and well.
Good morning, beautiful people. Quick update: Today is the first day I have been able to take a deep breath without hacking up a lung. My lungs feel less tight and constricted, and my breathing is a bit easier. Lots of phlegm but it's coming up. I'm guardedly optimistic. I've read horror stories about "relapses" at about day 13 or 14, but I'm not thinking about that (I'm on Day 12 I think). Anyway, it's a good day so far - hopefully it will continue that way.
Ed's doing well - slight fever last night, but down this morning. Minimal cough, less fatigue. He's teaching his first on-line class today - it's a brave new world out there for sure.
Again, we'd like to express our undying gratitude and love for all of the support and compassion we have received from y'all. We have drawn great strength and comfort from all of your kind words, prayers, thoughts and suggestions. We don't quite know how to repay each and every one of you, but please know that you are instrumental in our recovery, both physical and emotional. We could not be doing this without you.
One more thing - please, please, please stay home. I implore you to take this seriously. It will lead to tragic consequences if you don't.