I’m back

Wednesday 4th August 2021

gjphoto 4082021

It was the evening of Monday 19th July when I published my last story. That was 16 days ago. I wasn’t to know by the next day I would feel ill. I had gone to the supermarket before 8 am and it was as I walked there I thought I wasn’t feeling great. It was hot and I assumed I was wilting under the heat.

I returned home and began the daily tasks. I spoke with someone around 11 am and I knew I was not at my normal. I continued on and spoke with another two people before lunchtime. I mentioned to Tee that I did not ‘seem myself’. I called to register my concern and hoped a quick nap at lunchtime may give me what I needed.

I didn't sleep and returned to the afternoon tasks. There was one meeting at the end of the day that I did not want to miss only because it took forever to organise. Seeing that meeting through seemed to motivate me to get through.

Once complete I fell into bed and slept.

The next morning Wednesday I knew I was not up for much. Convinced it was heat exhaustion I took a home Covid test for it to confirm it wasn’t Covid. I just lay about trying to give the body whatever it needed to shake off this malaise. I was encouraged to register for a PCR test, I agreed.

On Thursday it arrived. It seemed the Postie was stretching as far as they could to hand it to me. I am not good with anything that involves more than 3 steps so to do the swab on the tonsils, break off whatever and seal the unit was no mean feat.

Then I was informed that I had to deliver it to a special priority post box! The nearest one was half a mile away. I knew I was ill as I was reluctant to walk the distance. I did it slowly, slowly. I really was drained of energy.

I returned home switched between the bed and the couch as I couldn't get cool. At night I lay awake as if tormented by the flames of hell. I couldn’t read. I just could about listen to classical music from Radio 3.

At some hour on Saturday morning, I read the text which informed me I tested positive. What? I was in disbelief, Covid this virus that was said to have originated in China and been the subject of daily press coverage for over 18 months was now in my body.

It felt like death had made its visit. “Ok Covid no point fearing you, you are here and so am I.”

Like some demon that would test me, I thought I just have to live through this. The NHS app set the time the battle would end as Friday 30th July at midnight. The question was who would disappear first?

Track and trace wanted to know everywhere I had been up to a week before the symptoms emerged. Had I picked it up on that London trip? Calculations were made about my proximity to others and they were notified. I also contacted them as I didn't like the idea of an anonymous app informing them.

The word got out and my support systems channelled messages to me via text, WhatsApp and Facebook messenger. I could feel the warmth of the messages on my soul and it was a bolster in the battle.

By mid-week I wasn't eating, this is war. By Thursday I was wondering would it ever lift. Occasionally I would get optimistic only for the body to cough it off by the afternoon. I found myself talking to myself and thinking I am hallucinating.

Then somehow on Saturday morning, I put myself through my morning routine. The goal was toast and jam at M & S cafe across the way. I stepped outside for the first time since I posted the test and felt the wonder of fresh air across my brow. I was walking, slowly but I was walking.

I ordered, I sat. I ate one round of toast and had no room for the other. I was encouraged. I returned home and slouched back into the couch.

I had been advised to take it slow and I had no reason to disobey. At lunchtime I walked to my beloved lake and sat for a time on the bench just being grateful.

Each day I kept the routine, a little to eat, a little walk and plenty of rest.

By Monday evening and encouraged by Tee (who had gotten herself offside some time ago) I went to the Cinema to see In The Heights.

I should have got up and danced but I didn't. Great film and a great way to begin to feel normal again.

I slept well on Monday night having the odd cough which I was told may linger.

I had booked a few days away on Wednesday way before this Covid thing hit and had wondered would I be well enough to go.

By Tuesday I was almost my new self and felt I could still have those days away.

It is now Wednesday and ‘slowly does it.’ I packed a bag, filled up the car, had some breakfast and then headed south.

I arrived here a few hours ago and it feels so right to be in the silence of this rural Hampshire place.

Thank you to everyone who went through this with me and thanks to God that we got through Covid and now experience new days.




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Gordie Jackson

Gordie Jackson

Speaks with a Northern Irish accent, lives in Hertfordshire, England.