Coming up Covid-19

Oh, COVID-19… how I hate it. Not because it has basically destroyed any semblance of an economy, or that it has revealed the true nature of every American over having to wear a mask, or how it has trapped all of us inside our homes with our insufferable families. No. It is because it has killed conversations. I am so over discussing it in passing or at length with anyone I may come into contact with. It’s a worn out topic that, frankly, no one has anything new to offer, and at this point we all sound like broken records. (Emphasis on the all, in that statement.)

The thing that humbles me when I start to feel the rage rising in me, in regards to Covid, is that every person in the world feels my pain. Granted we all experience it at different levels, but each of us has had shared moments.

I had written about that, some months back (the beautiful thing about the “Covid Experience” is it also kills any sense of or concept of lived time), and here I am to continue it. However, since then I, my mother, and my husband have contracted the potentially deadly disease.

Out of the three of us, each experience was very different. Even my own experience was so convoluted and bizarre it was almost like the sickness itself was trying to find out what it wanted to do.

Covid Cell 1: “Should we attack the lungs today?”

Covid Cell 2: “No. I hear the toes are really popping off though.”

My husband had the luxury of sleeping for four straight days. That isn’t hyperbole. He literally slept, morning to night, through his illness. I on the other-hand continued to work from home. Where each day was something entirely different.

The first day was full body aches with a stuffy nose (with no mucus), the next it decided to cause crazy pains at the back of my legs, the following it was just pain in my upper back, and then toward the end I just had a splitting headache that refused to go away. I never once experienced a fever, though one night I had the chills while sleeping, and a cough wasn’t really a factor in my illness that I find it odd we use these two things as bars for whether we have the disease or not.

However, I say that about a cough but it is because of that, that I even assumed my mother had contracted it from me.

I was hoping she hadn’t. It turned out that the day I started to feel some building symptoms, that my mother told me she needed to go to the emergency room. Her stomach was hurting her. As it turned out (like the last time I took her for the same thing) was that she had a UTI. Her urgency was expected but overall irritating because why then? And my husband couldn’t take her because he was for sure sick, and her caretaker couldn’t because I had her insurance information. So, it had to be me. I wore a mask the entire time I was with her and she still got it. And she survived.

The first thing my husband said when I told him she tested positive was, “Your mother is a horse.” And immediately following his statement was her caretaker who opined, “Your mother would have survived the black plague.”

It’s odd to me that my mother’s body is so healthy. She’s been overweight for all of my life, and she doesn’t have high blood pressure, heart disease, or diabetes. Nope. Her health is incredible, it’s just her brain that sucks. So it’s fitting that old age or external diseases wouldn’t be the things to potentially take her life; no, it has to be her own mind that ends it all. Strange.

Miraculously, the boyfriend didn’t get it. I don’t know how. He was hanging out in the house the first day the husband was sick. He did get sick, but his test came back negative.

I would think (and hope) that surviving something that could very well have killed me would spark some sort of urgency to finish my novel. Yet, here I am lacking any will to even peruse what I have finished. It sucks.

I have ultimately chocked it up to the belief I now feel, that there is no future. Like, I do believe life will march on. It will. It has for centuries. It will just look so very different once this is all over, if it ever ends. And in this brand new age, will my story even matter?

So, instead of writing about the new route I have decided to take in regards to my book (making it a limited serial audiobook podcast) I spent the entire post talking about Covid-19.

I told you… I hate what it’s done to conversations. And now blog posts.

Covid Crises

While I don’t have my test results to show if I do have Covid-19, my mind has already been made up. I’m certain that I have it. My symptoms are too on the nose for it not to be. It could be the flu. Sure. Though I highly doubt that. Getting really sick during a pandemic usually means you have the illness.

To occupy my time, I’ve been racking my brain trying to decipher when it was I could have contracted the disease. What I have discovered is that everything that’s happened (in the world and in my own personal life) has made time do this weird bend, where I have no concept of its length and therefore is hard to place events. It really, really sucks.

Now I am not a willy-nilly, “I’m going to do whatever I want” person. If I go anywhere it is with purpose and it is done as quick as possible. I am also a mask man, 100%. I have returned to work, inspecting people’s homes to assess value. And as I do work, the mask is on. Immediately following each assignment I return to my car and wipe down my equipment with Clorox wipes and use hand sanitizer. I have been very cautious. The only time I’ve thrown any kind of “caution to the wind” was going to a Chinese food restaurant when things first reopened.

That one event was so uncomfortable, I have since not attempted to repeat any form of in-house dining. If I do get food or drinks outside of my own home, I pay with my phone. I don’t want to exchange cash with anyone for fear of catching it. (Sidenote: the restaurant was so long ago it couldn’t be the moment I caught it.)

So HOW THE FUCK did I get it?!

What makes it even more difficult is my husband and I showed symptoms almost simultaneously. Which means we came into contact with the same source at the same time. So it couldn’t have been from this one inspection I did where I (god why) went into the room of a sick girl. (I’m internally screaming). My husband wasn’t there.

And later it was told to me that the girl was “sick” from menstrual cramps. So where the fuck?!

The fact of the matter is this is a highly contagious illness and everyone (and I do mean everyone, including me) are acting like idiots. We’re driven to stay “alive” and that essentially means making money. Because without it we’re fucked. No food. No house. We’re dead.

At the end of it all, it doesn’t matter where I got it. I (possibly) have it. Knowing where or when will change nothing. So I have to let the obsession go. I can only surmise my need is due to this want to “correct” my mistakes. But this is kind of a one and done situation.

At this point all I can hope for is a negative result. Which is highly unlikely.

If it is positive… I just have to figure out how to care for my mother, how long do I have to wait to see people, and will this be a quick recovery. That last one has my stomach in knots. Because I’m reading some shit that has me fucked up. And I’m even more scared of the future. Life just keeps delivering.

My Tin-Foil is Showing

I am such a paranoid and suspicious person by nature. Whenever anyone young and attractive shows me any attention my immediate response is “what do you want from me?” Or if anyone ends up following me longer than 4 blocks my “logical” response is that they’re after me. (I have had someone legitimately follow me because I had taken a picture of his house for my job.) So, whenever I witness something out of the ordinary, in a pattern, I begin to panic.

My husband, lately, has had balance issues. Bad ones. He’s fallen a few times, one in which gave him a concussion. To me it’s getting worse, but for him it’s getting better. And that deeply concerns me. Primarily because it makes me think of my mother (in the descent of dementia) who will tell me the same thing and I want to respond with “no it definitely is not.”

This trump ramp/water glass thing initiated my husband to remark “he looks like what I have.” And I agree. It does. But it also looks like what happened with my dad. And that ended up killing him because he fell at the wrong place and wrong time.

Another factor that concerns me is that he, his mother, and I have had similar symptoms where we are dizzy or light headed. She had vertigo the other day and I start to get lightheaded if I scroll through my phone too quickly. All of this plays into my paranoia/suspicion that we are all suffering from the same sort of “disease.”

This is where I really put on a tin foil hat and I know that. At least I am aware of how crazy it sounds but I can’t shake the feeling that we’re all suffering from something we’ve contracted. Maybe even my mother. And I include her because she entered this at the snap of the fingers and while she is seeing things and all around kind of kooky at times, her memory is sharp as a tack.

My insanity really jumps out when I think that my husband has had 8 MRIs and still has no diagnosis. But it is VERY obvious that there is something wrong. Unless of course he’s putting on a show, but he isn’t that good of actor nor is he a liar. He’s annoyingly honest at times. So, these symptoms with no diagnosis even though the examination and study has been don’t, is all the more concerning.

This is all just drivel and I’m about 40% serious in what I write, but it’s freaking me out. Everyone I know or love has some sort of physical failing. Especially my close inner circle. (Thankfully they boyfriend doesn’t have similar symptoms.) And all I can ask is “am I next?” (Side note my knee has now started giving away inexplicably. So. Fun.)

“Looking out a dirty old window…”

There was an article I read once that said that we tend to rewatch movies and tv shows we’ve already seen because there are no unknowns and in that knowledge it brings us a sense of comfort. I subconsciously knew that before I had read the article but it was nice to get confirmation. My whole life I’ve rewatched the shit out of films. I would drive my father crazy with how many times I viewed Jurassic Park or Beauty and the Beast. “How can you watch them so many times?” Because they’re awesome, dad.

Lately things have been rough. For everyone unfortunately. And some more than others. Today I had had enough with twitter. I can’t take all the news, the protests, and the outrage. It’s exhausting. (And I understand that’s coming from a place of privilege.) So, I took a step back today from the social media platform for the foreseeable future or whenever I get the urge to be angry again.

Lately my rage has been off the charts. My husband is scared what it’s doing to me and to him. He’s concerned that I’m a rageaholic and he’s not wrong. I relish the power it gives me, even if it’s fleeting and makes me look and sound insane. I am by nature a control freak. I took that old adage of “if you want something done right…” very seriously to heart. And right now I have NO CONTROL over the world and where it’s going. Everyday it’s something new and more upsetting/terrifying than the moment prior. Twitter, unfortunately, magnifies this, which stands to reason that stepping away lessens its hold.

Tonight as a way of coping I jumped onto Netflix and rewatched one of my all time favorite movies, Clueless. The moment the music of “Kids in America” crescendos through the speakers and I hear the first pieces of Cher’s dialogue I was overcome with peace. I found myself quoting it even though my last rewatch was when I was 14. (I’m 34 btw.) It brought back so many memories of my youth, a time I wish I could go back and recapture.

I was once again hooked.

As the bright neon end credits consumed the screen, to the tune of “Tenderness,” all I wanted to do was watch it again. Immediately. Which I did.

The bizarre thing was, as it started back at the beginning, I began to devise ways to have this movie constantly playing in my orbit, like a slow drip morphine of nostalgia. What I devised was to use my work’s WiFi and just have it playing on my earbuds, as I type up my reports. I’ve seen it so many times that I don’t even have to look at the screen to know what’s goings on. I see the movie in my mind’s eye.

If you’re struggling right now may I recommend taking a moment to watch an old favorite movie or show. Don’t concern yourself with your phone and just sit in the presence of your chosen film and all that comes with it.