Contracting Covid-19

It was December 28th 2020 on a cold, wet and wintry afternoon trip to Ikea to pick up some much-anticipated online purchases. Delivery was not an option on this occasion and after spending much of Christmas house bound with restricted movements under the latest Covid-19 restrictions, I was glad of the excuse to collect some new furniture. Long queues and physical distancing were maintained outside but once inside, the usual Ikea busyness took over and it was not uncommon to bounce off people as you wandered nosily from room to room letting your imagination run wild. Interesting to note how easy it was to spot a few people that chose to not wear a mask indoors, as they now stood out from the crowd. It was an enjoyable day and the retail therapy worked, I felt good.

5 days later, I tested positive for Covid-19.

My symptoms escalated fast and within the few hours I was running a very high fever, a chesty cough, headaches, conjunctivitis, no taste or smell, aches and pains and complete fatigue. I was surprised at just how fast the virus took a foothold in my body and how quickly the immune response was mobilised.

I’ve written in depth about this immune response before in Super Immunity so as the high temperatures were taking hold and making me feel awful, I tried to focus instead on the defense work that my B and T immune cells were busy carrying out against this viral invader and the high temperatures was just one part of that defense arsenal. Again another example of how changing the perspective that you look at something from can completely change your relationship and reactions to it.

For about 7-10 days, my energy was wiped, my chest was heavy with coughing and congestion, frequent headaches and a very strange feeling of bulging eyes were the daily norms. Thankfully after about 10 days, things began to improve. My immune system had won the war and now I have an abundance of B memory cells hanging around watching for the same threat to reappear – this is the basis of immunity.

As my wife and I both tested positive at the same time, we had to isolate as a family with our 3 little ones…for 17 days! This had it’s ups and downs for sure but I am very grateful that we have a nice home to be able to isolate in without too much hardship. People were so good dropping off food parcels and checking in on us – we really felt supported. It was a crazy experience but thankfully we survived the tell the tale.

It serves a good reminder that the physical measures (washing hands, distancing etc.) are in fact key to reducing the risk of picking it up but it is also so important so keep your own immune system primed and in good working order. Take a daily of vitamin C, D and zinc to help keep your defenses fit and ready to go. As always the buck starts and stops with each one of us.

Stay well and good and much love.

JP

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