COVID: The Road of a Long Hauler… Part 7

Upon arrival, my new doctor was surprised as every other doctor has been to see a 43-year-old otherwise healthy woman coming in on a walker. This is what COVID has done to me.

Langston’s Party

It’s Saturday, July 10th and we’re having a party at the house to celebrate Langston’s birthday. He’s looking forward to hanging with his friends and I’m grateful that his god-brother is in town and able to help. Younger boys always like to hang with older ones, and since he’s getting into the pool, my husband can be a little more at ease poolside.  

Let the birthday shenanigans begin Photo credit: Areia Cobb

It also allows me some quiet time at home before the noise arrives.  It was nice to have adults we consider framily at the party to help with food distribution, cake cutting, ice cream, and anything else you wouldn’t want to leave to a house full of 11-year-olds.  During the party, parents who I hadn’t seen in a while came over to pick up their son, so I came downstairs to socialize. Being used to my swift movements and upbeat personality, they were shocked to learn of my current state and saddened to see that I had been hit so hard by COVID.

More Appointments

The following Wednesday I had a doctor’s appointment with an internist. I wanted to try someone new since I had been dealing with these symptoms for 7 months and felt worse after surgery instead of better. Upon arrival, Dr. P was as surprised as every other doctor has been to see a 43-year-old otherwise healthy woman coming in on a walker. Her questioning was very thorough, and I felt as if we had a new start. She ordered additional bloodwork, put in for an emergency Neurology referral for some tests she could not order, and prescribed 50,000 IUs of Vitamin D weekly for the next 5 weeks because results from bloodwork the Endocrinologist ordered showed my Vitamin D levels were very low. While in the lab, we received a call to the front desk and learned that Neurology was able to work me in for tomorrow morning. I don’t know what Dr. P wrote in that referral, but it worked!

This is my surgery scar… two weeks later. Not bad! Photo credit: Areia Cobb

It’s now Thursday, July 15th and I’m seeing the Neurologist. I get really bad migraines and take maintenance and onset medicines to control them, so I’m no stranger to this office. However, my doctor is on call at the hospital, so I’m seeing someone new today. Amidst asking his questions the doctor reviewed notes from previous visits and test results. After seeing my vitamin D level, he increased the frequency to daily for 14 days and then weekly. He also gave suggestions to help with my migraines as well. After a few days of taking the vitamin D, I could feel a drastic difference in my energy level. I was moving slow, but day by day I could feel myself getting stronger. This was not only what the doctor ordered; it was just what I needed to be able to go back into the school building. That’s right, in just two short weeks I had to return to school. A week earlier I was considering short-term disability, but now…. I feel like I can push through.

Back to School

School has restarted and we have one week of planning before students return. Five days to see how I fair through a full workday. One good thing is that the buses are not running so I can park my car in the bus port near the back door. If I get to school early enough, this can mean a very short walk to my classroom. Any walk is shorter than the parking lot I park in when school is in session. Shortly after getting settled in my room, my grade level was called to get breakfast. Thankfully, the breakfast truck was set up in the parking lot closest to my classroom. Still WINNING… Our first meeting of the day was in the cafeteria. This was my first big test of the day.  I told my co-teacher to go ahead of me to pick up any materials that we needed while I took my time and stayed close to the wall. The cafeteria was full, and as grade levels separated by table, it was clear that the masked were out-numbered. Our county’s mask policy this school year was optional after providing vaccinations for any teachers who wanted to be vaccinated before school closed last year.  Being that being vaccinated doesn’t exclude you from catching the virus, getting the vaccination isn’t mandatory and we teach Elementary School children who aren’t old enough to be vaccinated, I didn’t agree with wearing a mask being optional, but hey, I can only control what happens in my household.  That being said, I’m wearing my mask, as will my children when they return to school. After the meeting, we had some games in the gym, and although I watched, I didn’t participate. I was doing good just being there. I spent the rest of the day between my team leads room and my own and did as little walking as possible.  By the end of the day, I was definitely tired but I made it!  Boy, was I happy my car was close!

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Join Areia Cobb every 1st & 3rd Tuesday of the month as she shares her road to recovery from COVID-19 and how being a COVID-19 Long Hauler is affecting every aspect of her life; as a wife, mother of two active boys and a working professional.  It’s our hope that these journal entries provide hope, inspiration and information as you or your loved one travels your COVID-19 long haul.  

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