Well, my plans to start the new year off right have failed miserably. Apparently, while breathing a sigh of relief for getting through the last year, I inhaled a floating drop of the coronavirus.
What’s weird is that I knew I was destined to get it at some point.
Some might call it a prophetic intuition, but I didn’t need the gift of prophecy to read the writing on the wall. It was clearly readable: three out of six members of my household were already infected, and one of them is an anti-vaxxer and an anti-masker.
In the end, Omicron got me. It bypassed my immune system early on a Wednesday morning when I woke up with a sore throat. In the morning, I felt congested and had a headache. Later that afternoon, a mental fog had entered my thoughts and my motivation to do anything had dissipated.
That’s what I thought. . . Should I start preparing for my death?
When it comes to getting COVID, whether it’s Alpha, Beta, Delta, Delta AY.4.2, or the Variants of Omicronit seems that sooner or later we are all will be infected long before Omega enters the scene.
I guess we should be thankful that those who named the COVID variants use the Greek alphabet. They could have chosen to use Chinese language characters. After all, China is the origin of COVID, right?
There are only 24 characters in the Greek alphabet. (A fact that I learned to translate Greek for 2 years in college.) Still, there are about 100,000 characters in the Chinese language. This means that without optimism in the use of Greek characters, human civilization could still support thousands of additional variants!
Anyway, we don’t need the gift of prophecy to know that sooner or later they or they will be infected. Divine inspiration is not necessary to foresee this inevitable. Nor will prayer and wishful thinking prevent a person from becoming infected. We know this because religious and non-religious people around the world are equally at risk of getting sick.
Pretty much the only thing that will save a person – or at least make the disease far less deadly – is a healthy belief in science. Because there are many data regarding the effectiveness of wearing masks and vaccinations that can prevent people from dying. All people have to do is believe the science and then take the appropriate action.
But I understand. Some of us can’t grasp a concept that the medical community learned about 120 years ago, when . . .
In 1897, Dr. Carl Georg Friedrich Wilhelm Flugge, a prominent bacteriologist and hygienist in Germany, developed the droplet theory of infection. His theory revolved around the idea that the microorganisms contained in the droplets expelled from the respiratory tract are a means of transmission.
I also understand that many people think that vaccinations are an attack on their individual freedoms. What these individuals fail to understand, however, is that living in a modern world requires everyone to give up some measure of their individual freedoms so that everyone can live in peace with one another.
(See my article on Mandates and Mayhem.)
In addition to having a belief in science, however, it is important that people also have faith in humanity; specifically, all those whose mission is to serve others.
They should appreciate the work done by all the miracle workers around the world who dabble in the DNA arts. This includes virologists, chemists, lab technicians, nurses, doctors, and many other healthcare professionals who continue to work tirelessly to stop the spread of COVID.
I survived COVID. You can also.
If and when you get COVID, there will be a few days when you think you are going to die. Literally speaking, thousands of people are still dying from the virus every day. So why not you ?
As the virus begins to ravage your body, you’re going to be hypervigilant about the symptoms you’re experiencing. Will nausea, headaches and chills get worse? How high can my temperature go before I start convulsing? And when you start to feel congested, you’ll wonder what it’s going to be like breathing through a ventilator in an intensive care unit without loved ones to support you for what could be your last remaining hours.
You see, despite what you’ve heard, fighting COVID isn’t like having the flu. It’s more like a medical stretcher attached to a roller coaster in which the symptoms hit you at every turn and vary with the intensity of the dive and slowly cambering waves.
You could just skate through your COVID and be back at work next week. But almost as easily, you could be out of commission for weeks and months, or even forever. It’s just the way the virus works; it affects everyone differently.
If you’re like me, during the first week of covid you’ll start to wonder what it was all about. I started feeling any of the symptoms on a Wednesday and on Monday the only lingering symptom I was experiencing was that I still felt exhausted.
But I have to be quick to add that during my weekend with COVID I also watched all four NFL playoff games, puffed on a bag of Sun Chips and even tasted a few bottles of hops. The buzz is that this weekend’s playoff games were the best in NFL history. So if I hadn’t had COVID, the weekend would have wiped me out anyway!
Now, I don’t mean to gloat, but to borrow a cliché, I dodged a bullet. I beat COVID. I survived. And I feel damn good about myself. Like I was smart. Like I’m a better person or a better neighbor than I think.
But I did everything right. I wear a mask to protect myself and others since I was advised to do so. When the vaccine was first launched, I took the time to get vaccinated. When it was time for me to take my second shot, I rolled up my sleeve again. When the boosters became available, I went to complete my protection.
What I didn’t do was complain about wearing a mask. I didn’t complain about having to stay in the house longer than I wanted. I didn’t join a Facebook group touting the tyranny of getting vaccinated. I didn’t hang posters of Dr. Fauci on my wall and throw darts at him. I did not buy weapons in anticipation of the overthrow of the government.
I did not pray.
I simply studied the facts, believed in the science, appreciated the advice of professionals, and did what I had to do to protect myself and others.