I’m in Self Quarantine – Seattle Covid-19 Quarantine

Posted first on my Instagram accounts Bikurgurl and Eclectic Unschoolers.

I’m in self quarantine. Inside my own home.

I talked with a registered nurse from my doctors office;  she confirmed I likely have a mild case of the covid-19 virus. Novel coronavirus. The pandemic. Of course, at this point I cannot get tested as I am not having respiratory symptoms.

I started getting sick Monday, March 30, 2020. It started with a wave a nausea. One minute I was fine; the next I could barely stand up. Stomach churning, head roaring, I made my way to my reading chair. It really is perfection, fits me perfectly. I settled in, arranged the pillows, grabbed my blankets, applied my eye ointment, closed my eyes, and waited for the waves to pass. These signs, though very abrupt, are indicative of migraines for me. 

When I get migraines, I find lying down, or reclining in my reading chair, I block out the light and listen to a soothing narrators voice on an audiobook. Having the intention on the book, my focus on my breath, I mindfully listen, breathe, and take in what the author is saying. Most often, I listen to nonfiction of all kinds. Monday, however I was lucky. I was already listening to a fantastic book narrated by the author, borrowed from the library. This is how I got around to reading, The Power of Now.

Eckhart Tolle’s book buoyed me through that first night of sickness. By focusing on his calm, measured, methodical voice, I was able to really hear the book. Focusing on breaths, fearing it would become labored, helped too. I don’t know that I was exactly mindfully meditating, maybe more like controlling delirium, as my temperature soared, my body was overcome by chills.

Chattering teeth, uncontrolable jerking of my limbs; no matter how many blankets my husband piled on me, I could not get warm. I finally ditched my beloved chair, which transformed in a few short hours from my haven of rest and safety to a torture device, and slowly made my way up the staircase to my bedroom. Surely nestling under the blankets on my bed, as well as the pile my husband had put on me downstairs, would warm me up.

I laid down. I pulled up my crisp top sheet, my two bed quilts, then laid the three blankets my husband had placed on my downstiars on the top. No luck. I still felt like I was freezing cold. Teeth chattering, body shaking, I reached up and felt my forehead. I was on fire. I had no thought to consider it before; one doesn’t normally get a fever from a migraine. Obviously, I was realizing this wasn’t just a migraine – it was likely more. I took my temperature, but the thermometer read a low grade fever. I laid down in bed, reswaddled myself in my five blankets and flat sheet, then fell directly asleep.

By that night, my fever spiked as high as 102.6. I slept at 15 to 20 minute intervals all night. I had decided earlier in the day to take Advil, which contains Ibuprofen, as the anti-inflammatory usually helps with my migraines. I prayed a quick prayer, “Please God, don’t let me survive cancer just to die of this virus as soon as I’m testing cancer free. Amen.” A selfish prayer. Self-serving. I got 5 years post diagnosis and treatment, but I want more.

I’m greedy: I want more. I don’t need more, but I want more. More time with my boys, my husband, my life. I had expected this next chapter to be the next chapter of new beginnings, not the beginning of the end.

The Advil wasn’t cutting it. It wasn’t stopping the cacophony in my head, and it sure as hell wasn’t stopping the fever, the body aches, the shooting pain. Had I had migraine warning signs, I have a pill for that. Since didn’t catch the migraine soon enough, my prescribed medication was of no use to me. I blindly kept taking the Advil on a schedule marked by alarms on my iPhone. It was a barren hope for some good.

The entire night I poured sweat; I tossed and turned. My body, yet again, not obeying the focus I had in my mind: Calm down, stop moving, be still. I did not want to surrender the to fever. At this point, realizing the likelihood I had the virus was real, I stayed calm in my mind and focused on my breath. Sip some tea. Listen as I breathe.

Deep breath in. Inhale. Deep breath out. Exhale.

Focusing on the calm cadence and sage words of Eckart Tolle, I was able to center my thoughts. My intention. My intention is to not having breathing problems. Breathing problems means I need to go to the hospital; people who go into the hospital right now aren’t guaranteed to get a ventilator if they need it. It’s a numbers game. If at all possible, I want to stay at home and recuperate, without needing to subject myself to even more sickness at the hospital while I’m sick.

It was reminiscent of when I was told I had Cancer in 2015. At first, it was a shock. I heard the words, but they didn’t register. Appalled I thought, ‘I’m not even 40 years old, how can I have cancer?’ But that’s the thing, there isn’t always a rhyme or reason. Sometimes, it just is. It took me about 5 minutes to keep my mind from reeling and focus: What can I do? Aggressive treatment requires aggressive surgery. We’ll do the surgery, not because I’m arrogantly ignorant of my own humanity, but I had young children who didn’t deserve to be without their mother. Not now.

Reminding myself of those moments, I had strength. I realized no matter how bad it feels now, if I focus on my breath, the deep breathing, I’ll stay strong enough to get through the night. Since my breathing wasn’t labored, I didn’t consider dying in my sleep was on the table; but my friend, that’s also the monkey mind I was fighting. The monkey mind was reeling with fantastical delusions of death, my family finding me in a puddle of my own death sweat, and I needed to force the fevered delusions into believing what I knew deep down was true: I was fevered. I would make it through the night.

And I did.

Unrested, disheveled, stinking of sickness, I woke to still breathing easily, but throbbing pain throughout the rest of my body. My right leg, near my pelvic bone in particular, throbbed and ached. I tentatively moved my hand to my thigh and a wave of nausea passed over me the pain was so intense. Heat radiating from my lymph nodes, of which many were removed during my cancer surgeries. I can literally feel my lymph nodes pumping out T-cells. It hurts to sit upright, sit down, bend over – at least the searing pain has subsided when I switched to Tylenol, which also stymied the fever to a scant 100+/- and leaves me with livable body aches.

My nurse said I can come out of quarantine when I’ve had 72 hours without fever AND not taking the Tylenol. She said her doctor recommends 7 days until going back to work as well. Mainly, this allows the patient to regain strength and build immunity. This will likely take 10-14 days from the onset of the virus.

Guys: I am SO tired. I cannot even tell you.

I do want you to know I will be fine; I have no respiratory issues at all. My chief complaints now are just fever and body aches.

Likely, I’m more susceptible to picking up the coronavirus due to my ovarian cancer surgeries in 2015. It was my uncanny oneness with my body which led me to ask doctors to perform tests and monitor me for cancer. Sometimes it’s a blessing, and at other times it’s a curse.

While I am self quarantining at home, I am sequestered to my bedroom. My dear, sweet husband has set up an air mattress downstairs, and our boys are quarantined in their bedrooms – Gaming with the friends {thanks friends of my boys who are also gaming!} 🖤

We will be fine. We are all stocked up on food, just ordered more Tylenol from the pharmacy, and since my husband is mostly recovered from his surgery {though still not driving}, we are all quarantining in place!

With many naps, cups of tea, and food from my husband, I’m sure I’ll recover very soon.

Stay safe, Stay home. Flatten the curve.

I hope you are well too 🖤


6 thoughts on “I’m in Self Quarantine – Seattle Covid-19 Quarantine

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