Living with COVID

vlog created by Mackenzie


Mackenzie Shrum, Writer

October 30, 2020: (Watch video journal of living with COVID) 

 What an odd conversation to have in the morning. I woke up and now have to hear my mom tell me to not enter the living room. I had a feeling why but for some reason I didn’t expect it. My dad got tested three days ago but I just assumed it would be all good. You know what they say about assuming. 

     We got in my new car and the first place I EVER drove my new car was to get tested.

   Testing wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be. We went to Med Express and sat almost an hour, maybe longer, at least it felt like it. My mom and sister were freaking out about testing but not me, I’m too cool for that. My mom and I insisted my sister should go first because we knew she’d have the most trouble. She got through it and it was then my turn. I’m typically good with these types of things so I wasn’t too worried. It hurt but it wasn’t awful, no scratching of the brain for my experience. I hoped for once that this would be a test I’d fail. Again, I was assuming when I thought my whole family would be positive. Again, I was wrong about assuming. Turns out my mom was positive and my sister and I were negative, or so we thought.

   So I was negative until I started to feel symptoms a little bit after my test. My dad had to fill out symptom charts and that’s how I was presumed positive. He went over them and looked at me twice as I answered yes. Headache? Check. Coughing? Check. Stuffy nose? Check? State and home on alert? Check. After it became consistent, my family and the PA Department of Health were concerned. They pronounced me as ‘Presumed Positive,’ a fancy way of saying you probably have it. So I lived like I did. I officially could be with my parents and give the excuse that I had COVID to get out of chores.

   But it wasn’t great. See, at the beginning of quarantine prior to having COVID, I’d tell you the exact thing every kid my age was saying. ‘Covid is just a bad cold’, ‘it’d be gone in two weeks’, but that was me being ignorant and unaware. Of course, as COVID progressed, my opinion changed and I knew COVID wasn’t something to take lightly but actually having it put things into a bigger perspective. I saw how truly scary it can be. I felt awful, I struggled to breathe and feared for my parents that couldn’t fight it as well as me. My mom even had to go to the hospital for a day because of concerned doctors. Luckily it turned out to be Vertigo, but the doctors couldn’t give her a definite answer if COVID had anything to do with her dizziness. Chances are it wasn’t but there were too many what if’s to second guess.

  School has been another thing. When I return to school, I’m scared of a lot of things, I fear people assuming I’m not supposed to be there when I know I’ll only attend if it is safe; I fear my long list of tests I have to complete; and overall just coming back to school at this time of uncertainty. 

    It’s only October yet I have so many thanks to give. This whole experience was eye opening but not just for the reasons I already stated. I had so many people reach out with concern for my family, thoughtful surprises by neighbors we did genuinely appreciate so much, and the support of teachers. It was just very telling of how great people can be. This whole experience became surreal very quickly but once it happened, it happened. My family and I had a responsibility to keep people safe and we do not take that responsibility lightly. 

 See, the world is crazy right now and I just experienced it. But crazy doesn’t have to be all bad. I like to see COVID as my cup of Joe in the morning. It was my way of waking up to a new perspective and new concerns. I saw the issue at hand as more serious than before and became much more wary. I woke up to a new reality and I managed to adapt, as we all as people must try to do. Covid could have destroyed us and we really couldn’t control if it did or not. The uncertainty was there but we just lived as if it wasn’t a question. Living with COVID was obviously not the best experience in the whole world, but it is something that happened. The world is scary right now with the threat of COVID everywhere but when it is your own home, somewhere that has been COVID free, somewhere believed to be safe, it’s far different. Living with COVID is an experience that I will never forget and hope to never forget.