Well, COVID managed to find it’s way to me after two years of avoiding it. As someone with chronic illness and a weakened immune system, this was devastating. I called my mom in tears immediately after I tested positive, not sure what to do or how to handle it. Based on the symptoms I was feeling, I was really scared and stressed for what the next few days would hold. My mom always does a great job of being my calming presence.
Now that we are so far into the pandemic, COVID doesn’t seem to be a big deal anymore. If you get it, you get it. I absolutely hated that everyone was telling me “Oh, you’ll be fine in a few days.” I had every single symptom in the book and I was not handling it well. I don’t think people understand that I take medications that lower my ability to fight infections. I’m not like everyone else. It takes me much longer to recover from being sick.
It took me the full ten days to start feeling better and test negative, and I still don’t feel 100%. Given that this was my first time having COVID and I haven’t yet gotten a booster shot, this makes sense. As soon as I tested, I knew I should’ve gotten the booster earlier in the summer. I think it really would have made a difference in my recovery.
As someone on a biologic medication, I consulted with my doctor to make sure taking my Humira was still okay with COVID. Luckily, I tested negative by the time my next injection came around. I never want to miss an injection for any reason and I was very lucky to have the timing I did so I didn’t have to delay medication. Communicating with your doctor is so important in situations like this, and I definitely felt their support.
My biggest fear now is that COVID will trigger a flare. I had so many terrible GI symptoms and I couldn’t tell if it was turning into a flare or just from the virus. I’ve worked so hard over the past three years to get into remission that if this retracted my progress, I would be devastated. It’s something I hate thinking about and pray that I never have to experience.
While I’m mad that COVID somehow found me, I’m also grateful for the vaccine and that I’m feeling better now. I still have some lingering congestion, cough, and tiredness, but I’m able to leave the house and that’s a win for me. It will definitely be an adjustment going back to everyday life. Looking back, I realize that I was running on empty for a little while and needed the break that COVID gave to me. Sometimes it’s important to remember that we can’t do and be everything – sometimes we need to take well-deserved breaks and remember why we do what we do each day.
Be kind and patient with yourself, friends.