COVID: I AM IMMUNE, SO?

A telephoto view of two large Mexican mountains next to Mexico City. Iztaccíhuatl and Popocatépetl, the second one is the volcano that became active recently.Kodachrome 25

By Isis Win

A zillion things have been said about Covid 19, most false, exaggerations, and conspiracy theories that sprouted like mushrooms in the rainy season. So far, the only consistent and valid statement about it is that there is little known. Although that brings concerns about the threat, reality points towards while improving that knowledge, and while all this is happening, scientists from all over the world are working 24/7 to find the answers to stop the spread and death rate of the disease. There are gains achieved so far, but the answers still have not developed the means to stop it.

I find it as toxic and detrimental the level of misinformation spreading faster than the disease itself. Those fallacies only increase the level of existing anxiety, and such creates a series of waves that make the situation more dangerous. We know quite well, humanity is not capable of managing the unknown, the new in real-time, much less, considering that the unknown factor is life-threatening. As we know, this threat comes in two flavors: the potential consequences of the disease and halting everything for months. The level of uncertainty resulted from this can be seen as the catalyst of many other crises arise from the virus.  

Among questions and answers, false or reliable, the main question can only be: what is the true potential of acquiring the disease, to avoid it, and how to adapt to this new reality. Although proper answers are available, it is not simple to discern from what one side says and the opposite one. Dr. Fauci now recommends the use of googles, which make sense, since the virus can penetrate via the eyes. Did I get it that way?

When it comes to questions beyond the scope of my knowledge, I only rely on the information provided by the authorities of the case. In this scenario, scientists are the only authority. Whether there are contrary opinions or not, I simply focus on the credited sci groups providing information. Not what everyone else does, because to do so, it requires finding the proper channels, understanding stuff that is as foreign as the entire universe. Still, at some point, it can be understood, somehow manageable.

I pop questions on my own that are not clearly responded by any source. Such as, is PPE a secure way to avoid contamination? I believed so until, regardless of all the protection I used, I was contaminated. Being one of the “lucky” people that suffered “mild” symptoms compared to those relying on the emergency room, I dare to say: I am glad I survived, I am so happy I wore protection, and I am more pleased I was not the conduct to infect others. However, there is a dichotomy between the info I rely on and my personal experience.

I push the idea in my head, “If I am OK, there is not much to be said about it.” Then, my mind immediately responds: You already know Covid is new and unknown, so be it! OK, I can do that, but that will not stop me from questioning and questioning until I arrive at sound answers. Answers that serve no one but my own head. The reason I am writing this – simply is- that we have to be very careful of the disease as the spread of thoughts that come out of the new reality of today, in our head, not from reliable sources.

Post-infection; I consulted with two institutions to provide me answers. First, I went to the hospital to get a check on “Do I have the disease?” and the second, a private clinic where a physician I know from before, would check if it were Covid what I experienced. The hospital test provided two answers: The first one, the attending physician told me in his view, I passed through Covid considering the symptoms I experienced. As well, the lab results claimed I was positive for the antivirus caused by the disease. The second physician as well concur with the assessment. Again, no one was contaminated by myself.

More questions popped out of my head, the 1st one: How many people have experienced the same case like mine? In this scenario, it is impossible (says my head) that such a person did not do what was necessary to avoid spreading the disease. For instance, my symptoms were: tremendous lack of energy, total lack of appetite, massive body aches, an acute level of dehydration I never experienced before, but, more importantly, the most potent headache I have ever experienced. It was so massive and painful that any move made me feel my head was exploiting. The terrible symptoms lasted just a couple of days; the others still linger and linger, but again, since I am alive, all checks OK. I did not have chest pain, and I was vigilant about that because I have asthma, I am a smoker, and I am in that age that is at high risk. However, once I suspected it could be Covid, I used my nebulizer more often than usual to make sure my lungs were as expanded as possible. As well, is started to do breathing exercises to keep under control of my lungs. So, all worked whether because I am O+ blood type, I am under an estrogen regime, some scientists suspect it helps to avoid significant symptoms, whatever the reason is, I am here writing this blog.

I know there are thousands and thousands of people that seem to disregard this threat. Breaking social distance protocols, do not wear any protection, and simply live their life as if Covid is a conspiracy theory. Everyone is entitled to live their life as chosen, but the question in my head always is: what about spreading the disease furthermore? Hundreds of reported cases around the world state that all sorts o these large gatherings resulted in dozens of new instances, always causing fatalities among them.

I get concerned about people exposing themselves to death but looking at the facts of their behavior. I became numb, that is their business, and I hope they are already immune or have mild symptoms like me, and they do not share their bug with others. There is another factor that takes precedent over that: how long will the diseases hang around with such a non-precautionary attitude? But a new question came to surface in the last couple of days, as a result of further scientific released information—the potential secondary effects of the brain swelling that provided me that massive headache. I visited my physician yesterday, and I asked that question. Her response was she is aware of several dozen people that passed through the same symptoms as mine, and they are reporting effects of the secondary symptoms. Such as: suddenly having a short delay in their thinking or speaking and struggling to find a common word of daily use. Signs that show some kind of impairment in brain functions. However, no scientist knows if they are temporary symptoms, everlasting, they increase in intensity? Nothing! Again and again, Covid is new, is unknown, and there is controversial information about everything related to it. Therefore, the fact that I am “immune” to the disease for who knows how long, does not have so much weight compared to the secondary effects and that pops another as an essential question: will a vaccine avoid that swelling of the brain on everyone? Or the risk of that swelling potentially exists with some people. Well, only time will respond to those and many other questions. So meanwhile, we wait while we continue the lockdown and hope and hope.