I never thought I would sit down to write this, given the private person that I am. But I will remember 2020, the year of the pandemic and I was one of the 27.9 million cases. I was visiting India due to my mother’s emergency condition and it was also during this time that my mother breathed her last. After my mandatory quarantine (post international travel), I and my family were fortunate to perform her last rites and after a week or two, I started helping my father and brother with regaining momentum with their routine.
It was also during this time, the paranoia bit me and although we three were maintaining healthy habits like regularly drinking herbal tea, taking supplements and had no suspicious symptoms, I insisted on scheduling a covid test (rtPCR) as a precautionary measure. It was the morning of September 8, when my morning customary coffee was interrupted by a phone call. The voice on the other side said, ‘You’ve been tested covid positive’… That very news shook me to the core, and I exclaimed, “I am Covid positive???”
I remember crying to my partner, brooding over why and how I contracted this despite following all safety measures. As unbelievable and dreadful as it was, it was the truth. I had to only find peace in the fact that my father (65) and brother (24), were negative.
I had to immediately isolate myself from my family and since I was asymptomatic, I could choose a private hotel. Cut to 12 pm, I am in my hotel room, anxious as to how my next 10 days would look. In the meantime, I also reached out to my relatives and close friends informing them of the same. I tried to keep my morale high and told myself ‘You’re covid positive, but congratulations, you’re asymptomatic, and there’s only one way out, just get OUT OF IT!!’
The same time, some of my family friends recommended being in touch with a doctor to monitor my health remotely, who advised me to maintain a healthy diet, exercise, positive attitude and record my vitals (temperature and oxygen levels) twice a day. From my experience in these 14 days, I can definitely vouch for the following if you find yourself in my shoes.
Do not, I repeat, DO NOT PANIC; stay calm and isolate yourself
Wash your hands often
Get in touch with your doctor
Monitor your health, take vitals (if you can procure the medical devices), be vigilant and be comfortable with your doctor to inform him/ her of any unusual symptoms
Maintain a healthy diet, avoid junk and oily food
Make sure to stay hydrated, drink at least 7-8 glasses of water everyday
Gargle and inhale steam if you can, while quarantined
Indulge in yoga/ physical activity while in isolation
listen to music, soothe your mind and talk to your family members
Limit screen time
It can be really tough within the four walls, given that there is always a possibility of developing symptoms. However, yoga and reading helped me achieve a positive frame of mind. This experience has also changed the way I looked at life – I am fortunate enough to be asymptomatic and suffering less than the population with severe symptoms.
When you know your body is combatting a deadly virus, you know it is not the easiest fact to live with, however I have come out stronger and learnt the importance of self-care. I have made it my new normal to incorporate yoga in my routine and eating and drinking healthy. Mental strength & positive attitude is all you need. I kept reminding myself that “Every experience in life serves as a challenge, so be thankful it happened, live it and grow through it”.
How did I keep my spirits high? Whenever I found myself dreading “Why me?” I’d just smile and tell myself “yeah, I have a story to tell my grandkids that their grandma survived the covid pandemic”.
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