Current Covid

I know – everyone is sick of hearing about Covid and all it’s variants but please take care. This is an x ray of my lungs during my recent bout of Covid in mid July, before I tested positive (two previous tests were negative). The doctor said it looks like emphysema which is perplexing because I am not a smoker. All that hazy white stuff should not be there.

This image is courtesy of CBS news in Dallas and here is the link to the article. You can see why the doctor thought I had emphysema but I suspect it is mild Covid lung. My symptoms are improving and I have tested negative but I am still coughing and breathless at times. I see a pulmonologist at the end of August and I hope my lungs will look better.

When I looked at the x-ray, I wondered what would have happened if I had not been fully boosted and vaccinated. My husband’s bout of Covid triggered his AFIB. Our elderly neighbor was hospitalized last month for the same reason. It is a very new disease so we don’t have all the answers especially about long term problems.

Please take sensible precautions and don’t assume if a test is negative that it is just a cold. A throat swab may have been more effective in my case.

My first Covid Test

I have been feeling unwell for a few weeks.  Nothing serious, just an irritating cough, sore eyes (again) and fatigue.  I am thrice vaccinated – that sounds vaguely Shakespearian, nay?  It has been another strange Christmas with the Omicron variant and eventually I wondered if that’s what I had.  We have been venturing out a little more knowing that we are likely headed into an endemic from a pandemic but still wear masks most of the time.  There is also a sort of malaise about January with the anticlimactic sensation after the excitement of Christmas.  As you age, the excitement is tempered, but I still like the fairy lights and baubles (chocolate and booze, too).

The test was negative and I am torn.  Part of me would like to get it over and done with (if we are all going to get Covid eventually).  I worked at an international airport for a decade or more.  Travel took me to places with SARS and MERS.  My husband became ill in February 2020 and it was almost certainly Covid but I didn’t so I wonder if I might be lucky enough to be immune.  That aside, what ails me currently?  When looking for answers, I gravitate towards my mental illness despite how much that annoys me when doctors suggest that first.  I know that my anxiety can amplify even a physical ailment.

Last April we had a new air conditioning system installed – the old one was 17 years old and at the end of its life.  It worked perfectly all summer but in October we noticed a mildew smell coming from the vents when we switched it from hot to cold.  The installer was really quick to respond but after several visits (and treatments) the smell persists.  We put a lot of thought into choosing the best system for our house and then got quotes from various installers.  Teddy and I were both stressed at having any problems on such an expensive purchase, made worse by the Pandemic keeping us close to home and at the mercy of the HVAC.  Google has made me an expert in HVAC systems – similarly, I can now practice medicine…

It turns out that there is a fault with the coil and the manufacturer is sending a new one.  The installer thanked me for my patience despite how irritating it has been.  He implied that some of his customers would have flipped.  I am a fairly calm person but I realized that I am actually quite Zen right now.  There didn’t seem any point in taking my temper out on the installer.  We are all a little stressed right now and the last thing I want to be is one of those people who take their angst out on everybody.

There is a syndrome called HVAC sickness and it is possible that the dodgy coil is causing or exacerbating my cough and sore eyes.  The installer put in a free virus/mold killing system that may help the situation until it is fixed.  Or, it could also be one of those regular viruses that we used to get pre-Covid.  Remember those halcyon days when we didn’t recoil when someone coughed? If nothing else, our strange life right now has given me a little more perspective.

I went to a drive-through pharmacy for my Covid test and could sense the pharmacist was rolling her eyes at my incompetence.  Firstly, I couldn’t get the packet open because I had the wrong glasses on.  I dropped them and peered at the packet like Mr. Magoo.  Then I lost the lid to the reagent and couldn’t see where you were supposed to snap off the swap before putting in the container.  Finally, I made Teddy put it in the box for medical samples but had the sanitizer ready for him when he returned to the car.  Well, at least I will know how to do the next test!