The Results are in!


This is not a cat, obviously. They would never put up with me wrapping a blanket around them, but our dog has no shame.

The tension was something akin to a gender reveal party or maybe more like a walk to the gallows. I kept checking my patient portal for my test results. I was becoming obsessive with temperature checks. My temperature never rose above 99. I hadn’t even taken a Tylenol. I was convinced I was being paranoid, that my mind was inventing the symptoms in my body. I was somehow, crazily, manifesting the achiness in my knees and ankles, the deep down-to-my-bones fatigue. The reason I kept checking my temperature was because I “felt” hot, but the fever never seemed to materialize.

So without further ado, I suppose I should let the “Shrodinger’s cat” out of the bag…

(you can find my previous post to which I am shamelessly referring to at Schrodinger’s COVID)

My test came back positive.

Cue all the typical gasps and sympathies. Go ahead, get it out of your systems because we need to talk. Ready?

I have worn the mask, washed my hands, been as diligent as humanly possible and this little fucker snuck in. I let my guard down somewhere, but if I try to discover the exact moment, I will drive myself crazy. The truth is, and as my dear husband said to me after I told him my test results, it’s just a matter of time. We are both in healthcare. The daily infection rates are rising. Restaurants and stores are opening up. People are getting out and this shit is spreading. Despite the feeling that a COVID infection is inevitable, we have to keep up our diligence. Hell, I’m wearing a mask in my own house now so I limit its spread to my family. We can not let our guards down, not even for a second.

The worst part is thinking that somehow I am weaponized. This virus has made me complicit in its death march. My every breath, in the right (or wrong) circumstance, could be lethal. Go ahead and make a joke, my breath could be lethal in any circumstance (LOL). I am not opposed to laughing in the face of death. In fact, in many medical circles, laughter is the best medicine, and with this virus, I have little else to throw at it.

So far my symptoms have been mild. Am I one of the lucky ones that will get through this unscathed? Or will the raging fever, hacking cough and gasps for breath follow in the days ahead? After reading many accounts on the internet of the progression of COVID 19 infections, I said this to my nurse when I called her to tell her the lovely news, and she said, “just like we tell our patients, I’m going to tell you, stay off the internet!”

I wrestled with keeping my results secret, as if that is possible, unlike other illnesses that just belong to the person that is afflicted, it seems COVID 19 belongs to the world. I figured once the proverbial cat was out of the bag, everyone would know anyway, so I might as well be the one to tell my story.

It is 1 am, I am alone in my bedroom because my husband moved to one of the kids rooms (I made him), and I was tossing and turning, thinking about all that a positive test means. It means I let my guard down. It means my family could be at risk. It means the symptoms could escalate. It means my family, colleagues, and patients will look at me differently. There will be a hesitation. I wasn’t able to keep myself well, how can I keep others well? It means I’m not perfect. It means I’ve got to rely on God to get me through, because, in all honesty, I’ve got nothing that I can do to make a difference.

I checked my temperature again. 98. The slightest tickle of a cough. I have asthma, so I keep taking deep breaths to make sure I can, that there is no wheezing or tightness in my chest. I feel vulnerable. Alone, but hopeful. Because I have been anticipating my results all day, I have been distracted from what the days anniversary was. In many ways, I am glad that my mom did not have to witness the last 4 years, to have to be part of  this pandemic. She would not have fared well. What irony to find out my results on the anniversary of her passing. Perhaps a good omen? Mom if you are watching, I love you, but I’m not quite ready to see you again….


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22 Responses to The Results are in!

  1. Dewy says:

    Fingers crossed it’s a mild one. Plus can’t be helped if you’re in the front line! Over here the same. Some health professionals have caught it. And our numbers are low.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. drugopinions says:

    Get well soon. Please don’t beat yourself up….Focus on getting well. This is the time to be kind to yourself. Sending virtual hugs your way too. Take care.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Mike Kizer says:

    I’m sending more good vibes You are a person who is much needed and cared about in this world.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Emily says:

    You did not let your guard down- you were/are extremely careful. Heck- you are the one buying masks for dozens of people! Things happen. By taking care of patients (in regular clinic and the respiratory clinic), you sacrificed your health for that of others, because you are a kind, compassionate soul. Take care, my friend!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. V.J. Knutson says:

    Sorry to hear you are going through this. Take care and toss out the self-blame. Just focus on healing.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Deb says:

    Not the news anyone wants to get, but there should be no recriminations toward you, from anyone. This is a perfect example of the fact that this virus will find a way in, even for the most diligent of hosts. It’s not a question of what you did or didn’t do, but as noted before– a matter of time.
    Today I go into yet another Covid + room to screen a baby. Each time, the countdown clock in my head starts over. It sucks to live this way.
    Please do your best to take care, rest and return to better health. I’ll be thinking about you, and I hope you post on your progress.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. About all I can do is echo what’s already been said. Get better soon.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. lizziecarver says:

    It’s no surprise, and certainly no shame, for anyone to catch this virus – especially when you work in healthcare. Be gentle with yourself. Sending very best wishes.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. barbtaub says:

    You’re worried about how others will regard you—a doctor who can’t keep herself safe? We’ll see a hero who has been on the front lines despite bullets flying all around. We’ll see someone willing to take great personal risks to help others. We’ll see a fellow human, a vulnerable person, a friend. We’ll see ourselves at our best.

    And everything we would want for ourselves—strength and health and safety—we want for you.

    Wishing all the best to you and yours, along with heartfelt thanks for the job you do.

    Liked by 3 people

  10. Oh dear… I guess there was reason for your paranoia after all. Maybe you’ve really needed a good, long rest. Take it. Hang in there and may this $#&*(Q#%! virus flow through you easily and with no further impact. Namaste dear doc.

    Liked by 1 person

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