What Having Covid Is Like

As this is my first time having Covid, I wanted to document it so that people can have an understanding of how having covid feels. Clearly many people have experienced it in lots of different ways and I do not represent everyone but this is my personal reflection on the last few days.

How did I know I had Covid?

That sounds like a weird thing to say but it happens to be the case that lateral flow tests are less readily available than before. My work requires me to test every Wednesday and Sunday and I still had a set of the free tests left last week.

Despite testing negative on Wednesday, I woke up at 4am on Friday with a feeling of razor blades in my throat. As the morning progressed, I realised that this agonising sore throat was not defeated by paracetamol and my head began to ache. So I took another test and discovered a clear red line outlining my positive status.

Was I vaccinated?

I had my vaccines in April and June, followed by a booster jab in December. When having these vaccines I didn’t really suffer apart from a headache the first time and the same having the booster.

Can having Covid affect your sleep?

Whilst having Covid has been a lot less extreme than it would no doubt have been if I hadn’t had a vaccine, it has still been quite painful. The one thing that has really upset me is my sleep routine being disrupted. From the moment I woke with that scratchy throat, my sleep pattern has been completely overhauled.

The combination of muscle aches, blocked (and often runny) nose, sore throat and a weird cough has made it incredibly difficult to sleep soundly. I wonder if any of you have had the same or similar experience. For me, the lack of sleep has been by far the worst aspect of suffering from covid.

Is having covid like a cold?

Well for me there are some similarities. The runny nose for instance and bouts of sneezing. However, the sore throat that I have had for the past five days has been constant and hard to numb. Similarly, my cough has been quite harsh, causing my intercostal muscles to ache from the force involved in each dramatic cough.

Another thing I have noticed is that when I move about for a while, as I breathe faster my breaths are fairly shallow. It is like there is a tight rubber band around the very top of my lungs and when I need to inhale deeply it won’t let me.

Which day of having covid is the worst?

That is a tricky one and right now I still have all of the symptoms but I can say that the sore throat has finally eased a bit. On reflection the worst of the symptoms didn’t start until the third day of the infection. When the cough set in, I became extremely tired and achy. Even today, I fell asleep unexpectedly while in the middle of writing this post.

Having Covid has changed me.

I admit I was worried about Covid initially but lately I had begun to relax about it and assumed for a fully vaccinated person it would be just like a mild cold. I was so wrong! It has definitely knocked the wind out of my sails. Having Covid feels like a really annoying flu which makes you sleepless and uncomfortable and sweaty.

Please consider having the Covid vaccination if you haven’t already. For more detailed information about Covid please refer to the UK Covid guidance website. Thank you for reading about my experience of what it really feels like to have Covid.

Covid – Let’s Use Common Sense – Poem

New Year, same story.

Covid news looking gory.

Staff off sick, workers few,

Causing problems. Who knew?!

UK government going slow,

They need to act, or it will grow,

Beyond the reach of reason,

Ending with a dismal season.

We are knackered, so worn out,

We don’t need another bout.

So government use some reasoned caution,

Or we will all cave in from exhaustion.

Sorry to be blunt with this one but it is how I feel right now. For another of my poems click here.

6 Quick Eco Fixes

I chose a picture of Scotland as this is where COP26 took place; where urban areas and mountains are next to each other.

Now that the COP26 climate summit is over, I felt that the momentum has slowed down regarding climate change in the media. Therefore this post is a quick reminder of the simple changes you can make to help us become more sustainable and stave off global warming.

1) Make an effort to walk or cycle more. Even if it is just swapping one journey a week, it will make a difference. Can you manage getting up ten minutes earlier and walking to work or school instead of getting the car out? Walking not only is good for reducing pollution, it also wakes your body up properly ready to focus on work.

2) Have a meat-free day every week. It is easy and fun to come up with or follow vegetable-centred recipes. I have recently started to have more vegetables in my main meals, choosing vegetable lasagnes and pasta dishes over my traditional chicken or bacon meals.

3) Make time for educating yourself about climate change. Check out one of the many documentaries which are informative and thought-provoking. Greta Thunberg has a few programmes on the BBC iPlayer and Netflix has ‘Our Planet’ or ‘Cowspiracy.’

4) Clean and recycle waste products. Just because your yoghurt pot is dirty, don’t pop it into your normal household waste. Rinse it and recycle it. Recycling centres often reject unclean items so a quick rinse makes a difference.

5) Plan a holiday involving rail or sea. Try and swap your next jet-set trip for one using the rail, or even using a ferry or ship. Planes are the ultimate polluters and taking time to find alternative ways to travel is really important. For me, Eurostar is the key for trips to Europe.

6) When keeping fit, avoid cars. So many people drive somewhere to go for a walk or cycle. Rather than driving to the gym or taking your pet in your car to a park, find a closer alternative. Try home workouts or walking to the gym. Go for a run around your block. It sounds silly but so many car miles are taken up getting to a leisure venue in preparation for fitness activities.

Sorry if I am sounding as though I am saying obvious things but we have to do as much as we can to make changes. Let’s face it, our governments are nodding their heads but facilitating very little actual change. If you want more thoughts about climate change, check out this blog post.