Tuesday, November 8, 2022

COVID-nobody is safe

"How the hell did you get COVID, you haven't been out of the house in 40 years?" was my son's reaction to my latest health news. I got a similar response from my daughter. These two know me too well.

While it is true, I seem to have a reputation as a home body, I'm not squirreled away in isolation, afraid to be with other people. I just happen to enjoy my solitude. Living in Arkansas among the trees and wildlife really suits me. It is a chosen lifestyle. I love it here. I always have. Going on 18 years in the Natural State, I am always thrilled to glance into the backyard to see the deer foraging on a honeysuckle bush, watch a frog dance in and out of our tiny pond next to the front porch, or check out one of the local stray cats I feed, scamper up a tree. 

It is easy to take these pleasures for granted. They really do define me. Home is where my heart is. And, I am happy here.

I admit that I haven't had much of a life outside of the home but that was also a choice based on a once-busy lifestyle. When I worked for a newspaper, I was rarely home. There were lots of people to interact with and I found myself going to many places I never would have gone to otherwise. I was always busy because I loved my job and was always ready to run out to cover a story at a moment's notice. I did that for 20 years. When we came here, I wanted a change. Yes, it was a financial struggle, but the peace of mind was so worth it. I came to love my own company, became a crazy cat woman, and relished my life in the woods.

My reclusive lifestyle, however, has run its course. I've recently made the decision to get out more. I felt it was time to open up my life again to new people, make new friends, and explore new possibilities. 

Maybe my timing is off, because three days after a weekend get together with friends, I started getting sick. Oh, the irony. I had been so diligent about protecting myself from COVID. I admit that I wasn't unhappy with the suggestion to stay at home. I did it anyway. But things have changed; the country is now open and seemingly doesn't take COVID very seriously anymore. I am still not around hoards of people and have gotten all my vaccines and boosters. Rarely is anyone seen with a mask these days. And I never even considered wearing a mask to a party with friends.

And then last Tuesday, I thought I had a cold or allergies. Those are big around here and the older I get the more susceptible I am to blooming of things. 

But the following day I realized this was not just a cold. More indescribable (because they are just gross) symptoms appeared. I took a test, and voila, it was positive. Frankly, I was not surprised. I knew this was not just a cold. That was a week ago and I am seeing improvement; there are moments when I feel great followed by explosive sneezing, non-productive coughing, and what I like to fondly call, liquid face where every orifice in my face leaks. (How gross is that?)

Because I am vaccinated, I suppose this could have been worse. I know it could because so many thousands of people have died from this virus. So many people still die from it. I'm grateful to not be one of them.

I'm not angry that I contracted this virus. What I am angry about is that it should not have gotten this bad. Had the inept, disgraced, twice impeached ex-president done his job, COVID would not have taken so much from so many. The virus replicated into so many different variants because we didn't stop it when we had the chance. I should not be sick right now because COVID should have been a thing of the past. But, with all the lies, innuendoes, and complete irresponsibility that has fueled this disease, if there is any blame to be assigned, Donald J. Trump is the man we must look to. 

Little is said these days about Trump's inept response to the initial COVID outbreak or the more than a million dead that has resulted. His lies about COVID have been diluted by so many more lies, cheats, and dastardly deeds.

With cold weather coming and predictions of more illness on the horizon, I guess I'll go back to my hibernation strategy. That's OK.  

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