My Covid-19 Experience

My Covid-19 Experience

While on vacation in Australia the beginning of March 2020, on day 3 I started to feel really sick…fever off and on, nasal congestion, upset stomach, chills, and extreme fatigue. I went to an ER in Tasmania, but at that time, they didn’t have any testing for the coronavirus. I was sick for 10 days.

When I flew home, not once was I asked at the airport if I was feeling sick or had a fever. People were still bunched up in the airport security at LAX. For another week when I was home, my nose stayed stuffy and would bleed a lot. I contacted my primary care doctor, told her my symptoms over the past three weeks and she brushed it off and didn’t think I needed to worry (there still wasn’t a lot of testing at this point).

I didn’t go anywhere until the end of March. When I went out, I wore a face mask to the store (and gloves), wiping down everything I touched with antibacterial wipes once in the car. When I got home, I washed my hands for good measure.

Fast forward to last Monday…because of symptoms I started to experience, my doctor had me get a nasal swab. I was sure the symptoms were side effects of my new diabetes drug, but they were also similar to the virus. I was negative for Covid-19 and my meds were adjusted. I started feeling better already.

I still had the nagging feeling that I may have had the virus while in Australia, so yesterday I paid $130 out of pocket to get the antibody test through Quest Diagnostics. I had an appointment at their lab in Tacoma (Seattle and Renton were booked out for weeks). I got my result this morning and I was positive for the antibody!

The result really doesn’t mean much, now that several sailors on the Roosevelt have tested positive for it after having Covid-19, recovering from it, testing negative twice. Now the scientists are looking closer at them because they’re not sure how long/well the antibodies stay in one’s system. But, I like knowing the result of my own antibody test – makes me feel like I wasn’t crazy…nobody really listened to me in Australia, nor my PCP.

I’m one of the lucky ones – I’m 61, have diabetes and high blood pressure and I survived this.

I didn’t know until this morning, but my daughter-in-law’s father and aunt were sick after I left. They were never tested, so it’s possible they had the virus, too.

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