It is now one year since I first felt the fatigue, thinking it might just be part of a light hangover. Three days after that, it was joined by sinus symptoms and a positive Covid test confirmed. A negative test on July 13th, but the fatigue continued. Twelve months is a long time to be stuck with a change in how one’s body works. That my constant feeling of weight under my eyes, brain fog when pushing through lighter activities too long and, what I started calling, that “brain melting” feeling from the heavier activities are something I must live with until an unknown end. Not to mention, a lot of time the lower energy and overwhelming fatigue can last for a day or more after, just for the extra hour I push through to enjoy a little more time out.
I did not want to accept my long Covid symptoms, as it is not normal behavior for my body. However, with many doctors’ appointments and tests to verify, I have had to accept it as a temporary normal that I will eventually overcome. Accepting it, mostly, has just been better for keeping a calmer head with less frustrating moments, such trying to feel less disappointed constantly having to miss things my heart wanted to attend.
It has not been without moments of frustration, asking the “Why Me?” to myself, and occasionally social media, and watching the world continue while I must make decisions to do best by my health, my ailments and safety. Best for my health is minimizing the “fatigue hangovers,” described above, that come after pushing myself too much when my body already is telling me to stop with fatigue symptoms. Safety treats tired driving like that of drinking and driving, minimizing time I am doing it. With that, I appreciate the “DD’s” I have had to help the past year making it safely to and from a few shows I have made it to.
Also, I have had many others now share stories of their own long Covid, disheartening and, yet it is an odd comfort in hearing these stories to know I am not alone in this. There are many different long symptoms people are dealing with. I only hope for all of us to see it to a happy and healthy end. Additionally, it has been a big learning experience of what living with a chronic illness really is like, now hitting a year. I have a lot more empathy for those who have experienced chronic fatigue or other chronic illnesses. It is something else when my old approach of mind over matter gets stopped in its tracks by my own body over and over.
One positive is I’m continuing to be told I will eventually improve. If you’ve followed my updates, you’ve seen made progress on narrowing down specifics of what has been occurring during this time. The high CRP and ESR tests have led to a rheumatologist referral and first appointment coming up on the 26th. Also, in what research is known, many long Covid cases tend to improve around a year. So, I am optimistic that either naturally my body will defeat whatever is going on or medically will find solutions that I will be back to my known normalcy soon.
I look forward to a return to that normalcy. I cannot stress how much I fucking miss it all. From the bottom of my heart, thank you everyone who has shared all the words of support during all of this. Hopefully soon it will be me back out multiple times a week seeing all your awesome faces in person again, with my camera occasionally, and the random day trip hikes.