“I Was Ready To Go”: My Covid Survivor Journey

When my first symptom of mild fever surfaced last April 17, I thought it was just an ordinary flu. Nonetheless, me and my wife still decided to room isolate myself as a precautionary measure; “just in case“.

My Covid Survivor Journey

My ‘Covid Survivor’ Journey

My wife is an NCLEX registered nurse and with this pandemic, our household has always prepared for the worst. We reminisced on our past days’ activities and we have identified possible sources but no conclusive contact or direct exposure as we’ve always practiced proper health and safety protocols whenever we go out (I only went out 2x from April 1-16), go to the grocery, or other essential errands. The same applies for sanitizing deliveries.

After the one-day fever, headache, and cough, I was back to normal come Monday. I also did not lose my sense of smell or taste. And I was able to work-from-home like the usual; so much so that we almost stopped my room isolation until my fever came back on Day 6. At that point I knew it was something else, I never had a fever come back a few days after the last (my fever was gone again the day after); so I decided to get tested the next day at Exact Laboratory along Banawe, near our residence.

My Covid-19 postive result came out April 23. We assumed my wife Marjorie is asymptomatic considering there were only the 2 of us in the household. But just to be sure, she had her swab scheduled and came out negative. We were both surprised, but thankful to the Lord at the same time, that she did not catch it.

I Was Ready to Go

The main issue with this relatively new SARS-CoV-2 virus is that it can be a traitor. You can be a very healthy person but it can still kill you. You can have a mild symptom like I did, but it can drain your oxygen within a few hours and you’re on your way to the hospital and for intubation the next day. You may also develop pneumonia as it mainly attacks the lungs, but on some occasions, the other organs can also be targeted.

My Covid Survivor Journey

My Covid Survivor Journey

Me and my wife knew about these things as we have been vigilant about the pandemic through the news and its developments for more than a year since it broke out. And now, it has entered our household. We tried to be ready in the fight against Covid-19, but we are also practical enough to know the possibility of a worst-case scenario – I can turn severe/critical and die.

This may initially sound morbid, but as a Christian and having received Jesus as our personal Lord and Savior,  I was ready to go.  If for anything, I only asked the Lord not to, for the sake of my wife. I know she is not emotionally and mentally ready. Who would be? I was already thinking of messaging my family and some friends in advance to care for her well after I’m gone.

That night, we went into the office stock room and I reminded her where the old insurance documents and other important files are. She dismissed my reminder saying that it won’t happen, but I told her we are just being practical here. We have talked about this before, so it was just like a farewell-in-case-formality. She’s my Sun Life financial advisor after-all. :)

Covid Medicines

Load of Immunity Medicines and more.

Long story short. I had mild symptoms and God-willed, it stayed that way under the love and care of my able wife, our doctor friend Dr.Sarah Barba-Cabodil of the Barba-Cabodil Medical Group, our infectious disease doctor Dr.Christian Francisco whom we communicated with via a medical app similar to that of KonsultaMD, and the support of family and friends who sent food, medicines, and prayers, during my 2-week recovery period.

Lastly, allow me to share some notes and tips below which can help you in case you or your family member undergo the same ordeal:

Notes for the Covid Journey

    1. PULSE OXIMETER. An oximeter is a must as this handy small tool monitors your oxygen level. 98 and up is normal while personally, I had mine roving 92-97 during my recovery period. Going below 90, you should be readying for the hospital unless you have your own oxygen tank at home.     (You can easily buy one from Shopee here)

      Pulse Oximeter

      Pulse Oximeter for Oxygen Level Monitoring

    2. MEDICAL HELP. The initial assessment of my mild Covid case was monitored by my infectious disease doctor I mentioned above. while everything else was handled very well by Dr. Sarah Barba-Cabodil of the Barba-Cabodil Medical Group. They were the ones who supplied all my medicine needs including immune boosters for my immune system in fighting Covid. (You can message her hereThe medicines included, but is not limited to: Vitamin D3, Vitamin C with zinc, Flumicil, Prednizone, and Azythromycine. I also took VCO capsules and Colostrum Immuno Plus.  (You can also buy some of the meds here)

    3. HOSPITAL BED OCCUPANCY APP. I have not personally tried this as I did not go severe, but if ever you’d need to go to a hospital during high-occupancy rates like in April 2021, you can check this website to find a covid hospital bed available: https://datascience.group/cobeds19 . According to my friend Benedict Carandang, “Mara Reyes a UP graduate with masters degree in Sydney developed this app to locate hospitals for Covid-19 patients in the Philippines. A green bed
      indicates vacancy, while a red icon means all Covid-19 beds are already occupied. The app also provides each hospital’s address, phone number, intensive care unit capacity as well as isolation, and ward beds availability;
      ” as shared with him.(Link is here)

    4. OXYGEN TANK The month I got Caved was April 2021. This was the reinstatement of ECQ and most hospitals were full. So we had to prepare and think of alternatives in case my condition worsens and I need to be transferred to a hospital. We eventually found a hospital and we were in queue at #18! So buy time in case we can’t get a room, we bought an Oxygen Tank 10 pounds – which is goof for 4 hours to sustain  me -  with Regulator & Cannula. If you don’t know how to assemble and operate, better learn ahead of time, and not during the moment you’ll going to use it.

      Funny story, we actually test demoed it on myself as ‘a practice’ one night when I was not feeling well. :)   (You can buy one here or this one complete with regulator and canula)  

      Oxygen Tank

      Oxygen Tank 10 Pounds w/ Regulator & Cannula

    5. EMERGENCY HOSPITAL BAG. Be ready with an “Emergency Hospital Bag.” All your essential things – money/cash, oximeter, IDs, atm, credit cards, mobile phone & charger, medicines, clothes. This is your go-to bag when there is an immediate need to go to the hospital. (Otherwise, here are Must-Have Medical Devices for Home Care
    6. HEALTH INSURANCE. It is now a must as you don’t know when Covid or other health issues will hit you. While health insurance cannot directly protect you physically, it reduces your problems and financial concerns during these crucial times. It is best to be prepared. Alternatives such as HMO and the government’s PhilHealth will also help much. Consider a Life Insurance as well for the worst case scenario. I also have a memorial plan with St.Peter. As I told you above, “I was ready to go“.

    7. PRAYER TEAM ”For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them.” – Matthew 18:20. Strengthen your faith in Him. Have your family and friends continue to pray for you. Being a contagious disease, you would be physically alone most of the time, whether under home care like I did, or in the hospital. So stay strong in all aspects – physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. A big thank you to our Captain’s Table Fellowship Group of Grace Christian Church of the Philippines.

    8. REPORT to BRANAGAT or LGU. Report your case to the barangay or Local Government Unit. Government testing centers automatically report to your LGU, but some private testing centers like mine did not automatically report. My wife had to message the barangay on Facebook (since we self isolated). Without a reply, we just went to the barangay physically after I have recovered. They asked for my official positive result form the lab and accompanied me to the health center to be seen by the physician, After some interview on the dates and what happened, I was adjudged recovered and given a letter of clearance. One of my Covid+ friend in the same barangay received a box of goods as ‘ayuda’. I don’t know where mine went, or if I even should receive one. No biggie. But we are thankful for the DILG staff assigned to our barangay who facilitated the disinfection of our household after my recovery.

      Hi-Precision Laboratory

      Hi-Precision Laboratory

    9. POST-COVID TEST. A post-covid negative test result is generally not a requirement in the Philippines, unless your workplace demands it. In fact, as of this writing, government agency guidelines allow a minimum 10-day recovery period. After that time span and you don’t have symptoms anymore, you are automatically classified as recovered and non-contagious. But personally, I took another swab test just to get a confirmatory negative result, which we did last May 11, 2021. I had my 2nd swab test at Hi-Precision NS Amoranto branch and your case-handling will be to your best advantage if you are free from any symptoms for the past 14 days as I also took the opportunity to get some routine blood tests from the clinic.  (Hi-Precision Website)

Stay Healthy, Stay Safe, and May We All Get Through This Pandemic Alive and Kicking!

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