At the start of 2021 I decided that rather than setting my usual series of goals and resolutions I would focus on just one day at a time. After nine months of predominantly staying indoors it seemed a silly notion to look at anything beyond that, particularly in the fact that while a new year had begun, the current situation hadn’t changed.
It was a wise decision – January 2021 seemed like it had decided to throw everything it could in our direction.
The Bloke tested positive for Covid a few weeks ago. He works in a good school and while there are restriction measures in place and the number of students within the building are lower (although higher than you may think), his role as an IT Tech has meant that it was almost inevitable as he has contact with more staff and students than most.
He had noted that he was feeling tired and a little unwell for a little while, but as he had been taking a daily lateral covid test at work that had always been negative it was thought that he was just a bit run down. However, his colleague then tested positive a few days before and on the Friday morning he rang me to say that he had tested positive and that he was coming home and we immediately quarantined him upstairs. An NHS test also showed up as positive, and from that point he deteriorated pretty quickly. He didn’t have some of the classic virus symptoms – he retained his sense of taste and smell and a cough didn’t start to develop until much later – but he had a consistent headache for a week that was so strong he couldn’t sleep or physically get up, he couldn’t eat anything without feeling sick, his temperature was worryingly high and his whole body ached.
I ordered an online food delivery and got together a ‘Covid kit’ that he kept in the room with him: masks and gloves, thermometer, oxygen meter, disinfectant wipes, a large bottle of water so that he didn’t need to use glasses or cups, paracetamol and ibuprofen and small bin liner bags that he could put his rubbish in. As his appetite was non-existent, he had a constant supply of fruit and vegetables that he could snack on without having to try and eat big meals – chopped carrots, apples, bananas, sugarsnap peas, bottles of smoothies etc – and I would make wraps with hummus and salad several times a day as those were the only thing he could stomach those without feeling too sick. I washed bedsheets, towels and pyjamas to make sure that he had clean linen and frequently demanded temperature and oxygen meter readings. I washed crockery and cutlery that he had used and then doused them in kettles of boiling water. The worst point was about seven days after his positive test – his head felt like it was going to explode, he had started to cough and his temperature had spiked, and after a few worried calls to 111 and the GP surgery they delivered some super strong painkillers. Thankfully, these seemed to help and took the edge off the pain slightly.
In addition, two family members were suddenly taken extremely ill and were hospitalised within a few days of The Bloke falling ill.
Thankfully, everyone is now home and on the road to recovery. Both family members are doing ok and after two weeks of isolation, The Bloke ventured downstairs. He still isn’t 100% – he gets tired quickly, coughs frequently if he talks too much and he still feels weak, but it’s a huge improvement from where he was a few weeks ago.
Physically, I’m generally fine. I kept myself downstairs and didn’t get the virus, but that could be because I think I had it last year – in January 2020 I was really ill and had a nasty cough that I couldn’t shake for weeks afterwards. Mentally, however, it’s admittedly been challenging. I’m lucky in that my job allows me to work from home and allocate my own hours, but it did have an impact on the amount of work I was able to get done, and I haven’t even thought about looking at the blog. I spent a lot of the time in a hazy fog – the worry meant I had about 4 hours sleep a night and so was insanely tired – and even now it still doesn’t quite feel real.
It also made me reflect on a number of things, notably how lucky we are. I have practiced daily gratitude for a long time, but this was a point where it became even more important. In comparison to what many have experienced and the fact that so many have lost loved ones to it, The Bloke was lucky. The support network that was available was incredible – one friend went to the supermarket on multiple occasions to pick up things that I had forgotten in my shop, another dropped round a thermometer and ordered me an oxygen meter, another brought round some things that helped her when she had been ill and the nicest homemade loaf of bread I’ve ever tasted that her fiance had made, and all of them braved snow and icy conditions to do so. Every day my phone was filled with calls, text messages, social media messages and emails from family and friends checking how The Bloke was doing. The rent and bills were paid, the heating was on, we had the internet to allow us to order things we needed, there was plenty of food in the cupboards and our health service provided us with medication. I can’t imagine how tough it must be for those who don’t have the same.
For those of you who are still unsure about the existence of this thing, trust me… it’s very real. We have been extremely careful and followed guidelines and restrictions for nearly a year. The Bloke hasn’t seen his family in person for over a year, I haven’t seen my Mum since last March and haven’t seen my sister for nearly eighteen months. The Bloke is a strong, fairly healthy and physically fit man, but this knocked him sideways – in all the time we have been together this was the most ill I have ever seen him.
I look forward to getting back on track and catching up with everyone. Until then, stay safe, look after yourselves and wear a mask!!!
Glad you had the support you needed… and that things are now looking better.
Sue, in comparison to everything you’re going through this is nothing, and your strength throughout is inspiring. Thanks so much for taking the time to comment! Sending my love to you and your family xx
Thank you, Suzie xxx
Oh, Suzie, this thing is definitely real. No doubt about it. I’m glad The Bloke has come out of it relatively unscathed, but it goes to show how easily this thing can spread.
Please take care of you both 🥰🙏🏼
Thanks Ritu – has your school had many cases?
Before Christmas we had a few bubble closures.
Over Xmas about 5 members of staff tested positive.
I’ve had another colleague test positive since we came back, and even with the few children we have in, we’ve had a couple of cases with them.
We are, as primary staff, testing twice weekly.
It’s a strange time…
It really is – and I think a lot of people assume that schools are closed and staff are sitting at home doing nothing!
I’m in at least 4 days a week, setting remote learning, marking work, giving feedback, phoning all my families at least once a week, supervising my 10 strong team, as I’m in SLT as of this year, as the EYFS phase leader, zooming with various academy directors, as well as being on duty with our reception vulnerable and kw kids every other week…
The one day I’m at home, I am still constantly online, as well as making sure my two are doing what they are meant to be!
Oh, and we are trying to sell a house during all this, too…
Just waiting on two viewings today, actually… and it’s snowing. Freezing.
So need to sit in the car, in the cold, for 45 mins, too!
I don’t know how you do it, Ritu!
I’m glad he’s better and I hope you stay safe.
Thanks lovely, and you!
So glad to hear The Bloke is on the mend now, Suzie – I’m also recovering from Covid, but thankfully I didn’t pass it on to my husband either so like you he’s been fine throughout. I think a lot of us who have otherwise been really careful have caught it regardless – scary stuff, and I can’t wait to get the vaccine as soon as it’s offered as I really don’t want to get it again. Take care of yourselves, sending love and hugs 🙂
Thanks Ruth! I’m really sorry you’ve had it too – what sort of symptoms did you have?
A bit of everything except a high temperature – thankfully nothing got too horrendous for me but I’m only really getting better now, after a full month of feeling crap… Without doubt the headaches, breathlessness and absolute tiredness were the worst – just so pleased to be feeling on the mend now 🙂
I’m so glad that you’re on the mend – what a scary thing to go through!
I’m so sorry COVID hit your family and hope everyone recovers with no issues. Those who think it’s a hoax are out of their mind. It’s a flu, a new strain, and can knock you on your bum. Appreciate you sharing your experience with us!
Thanks, Bren! Hope you and yours are doing ok?
Best post as usual
Oh, Suzie, you and the Bloke have had a rough month or so! Maybe you did have Covid last year but I would still get yourself tested (if you’ve had it, you can donate serum for people who are really badly off with it because the serum infusions save lives) and do get the vaccine when it is available to you. Hubs and I both had our second shot last week, but then we are OLD. I still don’t know how we managed all the people in and out with home repairs last year, putting our house on the market with 32 showings, packing, moving, spending a week in a hotel and the moving in. On the other hand, we wore masks a lot of the time and used gloves and hand washing. Anyone in our house had to do that, too. Plus we both had the H1N1 virus the year before so our immune systems had been already jolted.
Blessings and speedy recovery to the Bloke.
Hi Noelle! Yes, I don’t know how you managed that either – you must have been exhausted! Nobody has been allowed in our house at all except the landlord since last March and we haven’t been into anyone else’s, so that must have taken some coordination… I’m so glad you guys have had the vaccinations! Stay safe and well…
So glad to hear your Bloke and the family members are improving. People who don’t personally experience COVID-19 will probably never understand the true seriousness of this. I lost touch with an old friend of mine, vulnerable to illness and in a nursing home. I was quite worried for her when I didn’t her back from her for months. Finally, she got in touch. She had it, but was taken to ICU and had slowly recovered. My experience is nothing compared to yours, but it reminded me that we are all vulnerable, and we all need to look after each other. Continued and improved health to you, your Bloke, and everyone.
Thanks so much for your message! I’m glad that your friend is now on the road to recovery, but it must have been so scary for her! You’re right, everyone is vulnerable – best wishes to you and yours too!
Thanks for sharing this…it’s filled with great information on how to stay healthy, and how to take the virus seriously….sadly here in the US, far too many of us have been “brainwashed” by bad people to think it’s a hoax…and some even refuse to accept the 450,000+ dead! Shameful
It’s awful isn’t it – we’ve had the same response here pretty much from the start. Honestly, it makes me mad – both of our governments have enormous issues (and I certainly didn’t vote for our current one) but it has never made sense to me how people don’t wear masks, go to parties etc and then place the blame solely on the government when they get ill…
I’m glad to here he is on the road to recovery, he needs to be kind to himself and you need to be kind to you. The Fathership had to get tested, his breathing has been worse since Christmas, thankfully it was negative, but it was a worrying couple of days, especially as he’s lost three friends to it now.
I can’t believe that some people don’t think it’s real 😦
Hi lovely!! Thanks – I’m really sorry you’ve had such a worrying time too! I’m glad everything is ok. Yeah, the mind boggles – when I was in town last year after the first lockdown there were people walking round in groups and yelling conspiracy theories which made no sense.
So glad to hear The Bloke is doing better. Sorry you’ve both had to go through this, but yes, you were lucky. Keep being lucky 🙂
Thanks lovely – in comparison to most we’ve been super lucky. The gratitude journal is full! Hope you guys are doing ok?
Thanks. So far, so good 🙂
Oh gosh I feel for you all. It us good all are back and getting better. It is an awful thing. All this reopening before time really puts lives at risk.
It really does. When things started to open up again after the first lockdown we visited a few places that we knew we could socially distance, but since then we haven’t gone anywhere or seen anybody, but the problem is within workplaces. It’s a Catch 22 situation – schools need to stay open to support the children of key workers, but this is just causing a further spread.
Yup vicious circle. It is so hard. But there have been people who have and are taking it lightly. It is so hard. Stay safe and well.
Glad everyone had recovered. Scary times.
TD!!! How are you??
I’m glad he’s on the mend, it sounds like it was awful. Keep safe 🙂
Thanks, Simon. Hope you and the family are keeping safe and well!
I’m glad everyone’s ok! Stay safe
Thanks lovely – and you!
Sending good vibes, hoping The Bloke feels back to himself soon and you have some time to relax. It’s now when we realise the support we have and the love people give.
I’m still shielding. Hope this all fades away soon. Take care.
Thanks lovely – he’s still suffering with a cough but he’s much better than he was and I’m so thankful! How are things with you?