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  • Writer's pictureeschaden

COVID Battle Haze, Braveheart...

I feel like a a rugged Scott’s man coming out of the mist, my hair wild and untamed, wearing the kind of clothing that has been, well, through some stuff. I stand at the edge of a battlefield that is my homeland but am not sure what the mist conceals at this point. From my bedside, I can see the tissue littered about which the dog has thoughtfully decided to shred into tiny, shards all over the floor. I am tired. I am weary. I am still alive.

I will start off with saying that I have never been more sick in my life...ever. I have never feared death and prayed for it at the same time. It was an epic battle that laid bare my most ardent and strident will to live. I have been hit with every symptom save none. I have had the worst sore throat that I have ever had, one so great that I could take nothing in other than water and that burned. That resulted in a six day unplanned hunger strike where I could take nothing in and that which I tried, came back to life with a vengeance.

I have had fever, chills, body aches, nausea, vomiting, a headache that would have rivaled any migraine, a cough, I have been through, and I am not exaggerating, 27 boxes of tissue. They litter my floor like tiny paper soldiers, fallen in my valiant effort to survive the onslaught.

I feel disoriented and insecure. I am not well, but just coming to, dazed and confused, weak and not completely sure of whether I won or lost the battle. So I stumble around looking for proof of life, my own. Grateful that my daughter has been spared. And also for the knowledge that came from this most recent life test.

I said that I wanted 2022 to be a year of health. I did not realize that I should have been more specific. I failed to mention that I didn’t want the health that I had removed, just that I wanted to be more healthy. And I guess, in a very weird and dramatic way, that happened. I am no longer drinking Diet Coke. I have forgotten my daily caffeine infusion. Having been barely able to choke down jello a couple of days ago, has made me appreciate food in a whole new way. I guess this year, I had to learn yet another lesson in specificity. I want to be more healthy from where I am, not lose it all and have to start all over again. But here we are...ground zero on COVID’s battleground. I am weary and weak from the fight but I feel like I can claim the victory that is mine, I am still here, breathing and living and I learned a couple things in the darkened days in bed.

None of us are promised another minute of this life. I feel like I have been hanging in the balance the last nine days and I would be lying that there weren’t times when death seemed easier, the fight over, the battle too hard. But that is what you get when you live through something, experience the greatest teacher, you gain perspective and, if you are lucky, you can take that new perspective out there to live more fully.

I am so grateful to my friends and family who took care of me. The flowers, the food, the concerned texts, the smoothies that I couldn’t even drink. They showed up for me, over and over again...every single day. If you ever want to know who is your inner circle, get COVID, you will find out. Thank you. Every time one of these people helped me, I thought of the person who was like me, with no one to help them. And I prayed that the help that was being provided me, could somehow help them too.

So I emerge today from my COVID haze, Christmas decorations still up, ten pounds lighter than I started, a changed person. I am not the same, how could I be? But one thing has been confirmed for me, that is that everything I go through and survive is meant for me to survive to help another. So if you are out there alone and suffering, please reach out. I am still a few days away from being mobile, but I am here, I do care and I will gladly give what I can. 2022 is totally about health, mine and yours. Because if we don’t have it, we really have very little at all.

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