It’s back. It’s freakin’ back. There I was, happily re-acquainting myself with normal life after 54 days of covid-19. The energy I had was amazing, the clearness in my head unbelievably great. I wrote about the whole thing again, tips and insights I’ve gained and all, and That Was It.
Or so I thought.
Here I am, down there somewhere in a hole again. Me and my Corona Brain. I like to label things with words (as you might have noticed) so Corona Brain it is. When I have Corona Brain, it feels like a part of my brain just doesn’t want to wake up. I am here, but not completely. Somehow thoughts easily get tangled up inside my head into a big soup. My family notices a clear difference in me: I’m acting slower (and weirder) in everything compared to the real me. Combined with fatigue and increased lung pain, I have now learned that the only thing to do is surrender. Again. Waking up with Corona Brain feels like a lost day. I will go to sleep tonight and can only hope to wake up tomorrow with a clear head and more energy.
When I read the news and my social media feeds, I mostly read two things:
1. Statistics of people who have died and stories from people in respirators in hospitals
2. Information about how covid-19 “for most people is like a mild flu with little or no symptoms”
I feel such a need to understand: is it just me or is there something missing in the narrative around Corona and its long-lasting symptoms? I have several people in my circles who are reporting terrible conditions. They are not hospitalized, instead they are sitting at home while going through all of it. For example: nine weeks (and counting!) of constant fever. Weeks of sleeping 20 out of 24 hours per day. Wave upon wave of lung troubles. Etc. etc. Why am I not reading about this more? I notice how much it means to me to hear about other people and their experience with having covid-19. It makes me feel less alone somehow, and that we’re all in it together.
As I wrote before: I can’t imagine anyone going through this for weeks (months) on end and not being (deeply) affected by it. Yesterday I experienced such a desperation:
What if this will last for the rest of my life? What if I will never be completely rid of it?
I cried on and off for two hours, it just had to come out.
Anyone reading this recognizing this desperation? Because the thing is that nobody knows. There are still so many question marks around this virus. We need lots, and lots, of time for the scientists and health experts of the world to solve this Coronavirus-puzzle. And in the meantime, we cannot do anything other than wait it out. There is no cure.
I have understood that, medically, I am virus-free but not symptom-free. That means that I’m not contagious anymore, but that my body still shows symptoms and that these can come in waves. No one today understands why this is (and how long this will last) but it can apparently have something to do with my immune system reacting in a particular way. I am no health expert, so this is as far as my understanding goes.
It is what it is.
I feel a lot of hesitation to publish this because the truth is that I feel ashamed. I feel ashamed about writing that I’m healthy to then return and write that my symptoms are back again. I also feel fear of being judged. I am afraid people will judge me for writing again about my problems with this virus. I’ve already written so much about it.
Just to be clear: I do not write this in order for people to wish me well. I do not write this in order for people to feel sorry for me. I only write this, once again, because my writing might help someone else out there. If it does, then that means the world to me. That’s all.
To all of you out there with Corona Brain and all other symptoms: hang in there! And remember:
With love ♥
PS – an update: I notice a lot of people reading this text as well as my previous posts about having covid-19 (thank you!). If it resonates with you, I’m very grateful if you want to share it in your circles too, so it can reach more people who are struggling right now. Thank you!
Photo: Pawel Czerwinski – unsplash.com