Two weeks ago I was in school, where the policy surrounding COVID-19 had changed to allow students to eat inside. As it was cold out, I was trying to get over my anxiety and eat with my friends.
One week ago, I was on a Zoom call with 11 people, three of whom had COVID-19. That ratio may be higher than average, but it was still surreal.
This week, I’m refining my solitaire skills and coughing up brownish mucus after a positive test.
With cases of the omicron variant on the rise, people around me kept saying it’s inevitable that we will all get COVID-19. I don’t think this is entirely true, and sounds like the type of thing someone tells you after exposing you to COVID-19. But recently, virus cases have spiked higher than ever before in the nearly two years since the start of the pandemic. With 280,000 people worldwide falling ill the week of Dec. 15, the United States was the biggest contributor. According to Johns Hopkins, the U.S. reported over a million new cases in a single day Monday, setting a global record.
I believe I contracted the omicron variant. Despite us all being vaccinated, my mom, brother and I all got pretty sick. Even though he lives with us, my stepdad did not get sick; he got his booster in early December. Separate studies from the University of Glasgow, Perelman School of Medicine and the University of Cambridge have all found that omicron causes less damage to the lungs.
To be honest, after incessantly blaming my brother, I was embarrassed to have COVID-19 because I was worried it made me look irresponsible. Or even stupid for being so uptight and unfortunately responsible about safety, and then getting sick anyway. To some extent, my anger is valid because there are plenty of things you can do to reduce your risk of getting sick. Unfortunately, almost all of them depend on your age, living situation, socioeconomic class and if you have certain disabilities.
That said, if you’ve caught the virus in one way or another, I’ve included some tips and tricks I’ve gathered through my own experience. My ideas aren’t medical advice by any means, but they did help me.