The Only Time We Broke Our Bubble and Got COVID-19

I knew that getting COVID-19 was not a matter of IF, but a matter of WHEN. But a part of me was hoping that we would get it when Zayne has already been vaccinated. That is why our little family has been living in a bubble since March 2020. All of our moves are calculated. We stopped asking our stay out help and even our parents to go to the house ever since the pandemic started. All of our essential needs are bought online. We only had to go out of the house during pedia visits and when Boyet and I had our COVID-19 vaccine. But despite all of our efforts, we still got the virus.
2021 was such an exhausting year, so to say that I was looking forward to my holiday break was an understatement. I was working until December 23 because I had to deliver something at work on January 3. I was able to finish it off two days earlier, so majority of the things I did on the 23rd were admin stuff. You had no idea how ecstatic I was when I set my email’s OOO notification.

I got busy cleaning and cooking in preparation for Christmas. If you personally know me, then you’re probably aware that our family celebrated Christmas 2021 the same way we celebrated the year before – in a bubble. Every time there’s a special occasion, my parents would come over and eat in the garage, while the three of us stay in the dining room. Right after our Christmas lunch, Zayne complained of toothache. It went away when she brushed her teeth. I spent the day after Christmas cleaning the entire house. I was so exhausted, but I got a little worried when Zayne started crying because of her toothache. I scheduled a visit to her dentist the next day. December 27 was the first time we broke our bubble when we went to the dentist. A few hours after we got home, Zayne started having fever and still complained of toothache. Her dentist prescribed antibiotics for the tooth infection around 10PM. We were planning to start her antibiotics the next day, but she woke up around 1AM due to excruciating pain. We booked a Grab pabili service to buy antibiotics, so we could start right away. She was awake anyway, so we gave her milk and banana before taking the meds.
The next day, December 28, Tatay had to go to St. Luke’s BGC for an MRI. He has been complaining of pains on his right arm since early October. And because he didn’t want to go outside, he has been using OTC pain meds and essential oils to relieve the pain. But after a teleconsult with our company doctor, he was advised to see an orthopedic doctor. To lessen going out, Tatay also scheduled his first PT session on the same day. Around 5PM that same day, Zayne was still complaining of her toothache. I sent a message to Zayne’s dentist, and we were asked to go back to the clinic. We were advised that if the antibiotics didn’t work, then we had no choice but to have the tooth extracted. That night, none of us got any sleep because Zayne kept on waking us up because of pain. She would go to sleep and wake up when the effect of the Paracetamol wears off. 
December 29 was Tatay’s second PT session. Zayne was still complaining of pain. Tatay sent a message to his dentist friend on December 30 right after his third PT session. He said that there is a root canal procedure for kids. We talked to Zayne’s dentist about it. He said that it is possible, but he could not do it in his clinic because he doesn’t have an xray machine. I told Tatay that we should just wait for the antibiotics to  work, but Zayne just kept on crying the whole day. She was also having a hard time eating. And so we went to the new dentist to have Zayne’s teeth checked. Unfortunately, the procedure was not done because Zayne kept on gagging during the attempt. The dentist just put a sedative on her tooth. Same as the days before, Zayne kept us awake the whole night. That was the last day we broke our bubble.
Zayne was still complaining of her toothache, but she was at least able to eat during New Year. We didn’t have any visitors inside the house. I started ironing clothes the afternoon of January 1. I woke up in the middle of the night and transferred to the living room because Tatay was snoring. I woke up again around 2AM with itchy throat and body pains. I thought the sore throat was because I ate smores the day before, and that the body pains were because I cooked NY lunch and ironed clothes in the afternoon. By 5AM of January 2, I already had fever. I wore a mask and isolated in our home office. I tried to backtrack my moves, but I knew that I didn’t even remove my mask when we went out on December 30. Again, I thought it was probably just fatigue because my immune system was already so low which I attributed from lack of sleep because of Zayne’s tooth infection. I thought that it might be my usual birth month tradition because I always get sick on January! I woke up around 10AM. I could not move, and my headache was horrible! I slept almost the entire day. I only woke up to eat, but I ended up throwing up everything. The good news that day was Zayne’s toothache was gone. Tatay said that she ate a lot - a first since Christmas!
I woke up around 2AM of January 3. I checked my temperature, and the fever was already gone. Sore throat was also gone, but my head was pounding. I consulted our company doctor. She said that I could just continue to isolate if I could. I wasn’t asked to get a swab test. I just spent the whole day sleeping and throwing up. The vomiting only stopped when my doctor friend (Doc Ninang) gave me meds. It didn’t help that I finally got my period after 40+ days. I mean, PCOS sucks, but I’m so used to not having my period for months. I would have been happier if it didn’t come on the same day that I was throwing my entire soul up! Tatay said that Zayne kept on crying and asking when I would get out of isolation. I could bear the pain and all the throwing up, but missing Zayne was the worst! :'(
I woke up on January 4 with a message from Tatay. He said that he slept in the living room because he felt feverish. Although I wanted to continue with my isolation, Tatay’s fever shot up, and we had no other choice but to swap places. I disinfected the entire study room. Tatay spent the night in isolation. I was still feeling very weak, but I had to take care of Zayne. We did not want to send her to my parents because both are senior citizens with underlying conditions. I had been on autopilot since Zayne’s tooth infection, so I literally felt like a zombie that day. We slept really late that night because Zayne kept on crying. She said she misses Tatay.
Tatay’s fever was gone the next day, January 5. Unfortunately, it was just the beginning of our nightmare. Zayne started feeling hot around lunchtime. She was still able to eat lunch, but she fell asleep right away. It started as low-grade fever. She was still feeling energetic. She even said that she is happy because at least we were all sick together! What a crazy girl! Around 6PM, Doc Ninang sent us antigen kits. We were on video call as she instructed us how to use the kits. Zayne was lying at the background, but she was still feeling okay. I was the first one to take the test. By this time, I was already on Day 4 of symptoms. You have no idea how I felt when I saw the two lines. I’ve been spending years of disappointments looking at home pregnancy tests with one line, and there I was, looking at two lines on the antigen kit! Boyet, who was at Day 2 at that time, tested negative. Doc Ninang told us that we could confirm via RT-PCR, or we could all just assume that we’re all positive because we already had symptoms.
The next day, January 6, Tatay started calling labs with home service swab tests. Unfortunately, the earliest we could find at that time was for January 10. We couldn’t go to a drive-thru testing, because my best friend, who got tested and turned out positive, told us that they waited for more than 10 hours in line. We also could not leave the house because Zayne’s condition got worse. What happened next was something that I would not wish to any parent.
Zayne had a hefty breakfast that day. But around lunch time, her fever shot up to 38.5C. We were giving her Paracetamol every 4 hours, but it wasn’t helping. Around noon, her fever went up to 39C. She was already lethargic, and she kept on complaining of headache. I was already crying because she kept on holding her head and eyes. It was Zayne that we were so scared of getting sick because she was the only unvaccinated person in the house. I helped her take a bath, but the fever was not going down. Around 2PM, I checked her temperature again. You have no idea how hard I was praying at that instant. Lahat ng santa at santo, pati si Santa Claus na yata muntik ko nang tawagin! My eyes were glued at the thermometer, and I was literally talking to it, hoping it would not reach 40C. The thermometer stopped at 39.9C! I was already crying at that time, but I needed my presence of mind. So aside from the Paracetamol, Tatay and I were both giving her a sponge bath at the same time. I sent a message to our GC, asking fellow oilers what EOs could help with the fever. I gave her the usual Lavender, Lemon and Peppermint, applied on her spine and feet. But another oiler also suggested Digize and Cypress to be applied on her liver area. She said it could help “break” the fever. (Much to my surprise, Zayne kept on farting which was a relief for me because it also meant that I was not losing my sense of smell. Haha.) Zayne also has Koolfever on her forehead and an ice bag on her head to help relieve the headache. Our neighbor, who happens to be a pediatric nurse, asked us to put wet cotton balls on Zayne’s armpit. We were doing all of these non-stop for hours, hoping Zayne’s fever would go down. Tatay and I realized that it was already 4PM, and we still didn’t eat lunch. We grabbed something to eat, but Zayne kept on waking up because of her headache. She woke up again around 5PM. I told her that she needed to eat something. She asked for milk and banana, but she threw up right after. Around 6PM, her fever started going down. Again, much to my surprise, she pooped! This was a surprise because Zayne always, as in always gets constipated after a bout of fever. There was even a time when she was hospitalized not because of a flu, but because she was constipated after getting better from flu. Looking back, I had to thank the Digize and Cypress oils for that. Around 9PM, Zayne’s fever was gone, and she asked if she could watch mukbang on YouTube!
Zayne woke us up the next day, January 7, telling us that she was so hungry. She threw up right after her first breakfast. Luckily, the vomiting stopped after she had her second breakfast. She pooped again a couple of hours after. We were so worried of Zayne getting LBM, because it was a COVID-19 symptom that should be watched out for, especially for kids. Luckily, it wasn’t the case for Zayne.

This was taken on the morning of January 7. Zayne suddenly got my phone and asked for a selfie. Photo is blurred, but it will always remind me of God’s healing hands!
On January 8, the three of us had no symptoms at all, but we were all exhausted. We were just lying down the whole day. We noticed that Zayne started coughing in the middle of a sentence, so we booked a teleconsult with her pediatrician. We were asked to continue with the quarantine, which we were already doing. The doctor also prescribed antibiotics and cetirizine for all of us.
I’m glad that the three of us just got mild symptoms, but nobody is talking about post-COVID recovery. Believe me, it’s horrible. As soon as the symptoms disappeared, fatigue started to kick in. The three of us were just sleeping all throughout the day. Even the easiest tasks make me catch my breath. I had to pause mid-sentence when I talk. Even doing breathing exercises make me exhausted.
I also spent the first few days in quarantine feeling so bad that we caught the virus! We followed all the rules. We only broke our bubble because it was an emergency. We didn’t go to the mall. We didn’t go to the beach. We didn’t even see friends and family members during the holidays. We just went to the dentist because my daughter couldn’t bear the pain! It was so unfair. I was so sure that we got it when we went out to go to the different dentist on December 30. We had no place to park our car, so we walked for a couple of minutes. We took the least crowded route, but there were a lot people without their masks on! I was so mad, and I wanted someone or something to blame. But then I realized that mental fortitude is also very important when you have COVID-19. And so I prayed for peace and acceptance. There was actually no point in pointing fingers and thinking where and how we got infected. I just accepted the fact that we were at the wrong place at the wrong time. I accepted the fact that the latest variant is very transmissible because I have friends who got the virus even if they did not go out of the house in the last two weeks. Gratitude kicked in soon after. I’m just thankful that we are on the road to recovery. I’m thankful that we made healthier choices since the pandemic started, and that contributed to our faster recovery. I’m thankful to my parents for cooking meals for us. I’m thankful to our neighbors who rallied behind us and helped us especially during the worst times of our quarantine. I’m thankful to Doc Ninang who monitored us from Day 1. I’m thankful that Zayne’s school declared an academic break this week, so that meant one less stress for us. I’m thankful to our friends who sent us fruits and well wishes.

Fruit baskets from my team (L) and Ate Kakay and Gab (R)

And most importantly, I’m thankful for this life and another chance to live it fuller.

Post a Comment

My Instagram

Copyright © jE's AnAtOmY.