A Student With COVID-19: Susan’s Story

Susan Caught the Virus in the Spring

Ava Carlson ('21), Orbit Contributor

“I couldn’t taste anything and I was very tired all the time. It was miserable. But I was asymptomatic for the most part. My dad had the actual symptoms like he had trouble breathing, a high fever, he kept coughing and stayed in bed all day. My sister and my mom also had a really bad cough and they lost taste and smell….but it didn’t make any sense, we barely left the house. So, I have no idea where we could’ve gotten it from.” 

It was April 20th when Susan (name changed by the Orbit), a senior at RMHS, learned something that would change her life for the next two weeks. 

“Your dad was positive for Covid.”

This did not come as a shock to Susan and her brother and sister when her mother told them the news as they had suspected it for a few days. To them, there was no point in testing the rest of the family as it was pretty obvious the symptoms they were experiencing were from Covid and not just the average flu. 

Yes, Covid-19 and the flu share similar symptoms, like how they are spread through respiratory contact and they are more dangerous for those who are elderly, have a health condition, or have a problem with their immune system. Yet, the differences do not lie in their symptoms but in the speed at which they spread. Most people who have Covid-19 do not know they have it until days later, causing involuntary spreading of the disease. 

So although this virus may seem just like a bad flu, in reality, it can damage someone’s respiratory system for the rest of their life along with other long term effects. 

“My mom and sister’s taste and smell still hasn’t fully recovered and it’s been what 8 months?”

Even those who were asymptomatic, like Susan, were still negatively affected by Covid-19 since she and the rest of her family had to fully quarantine for two weeks. 

“I think all I did during those two weeks was just sleeping and watching TV which doesn’t sound that bad, but after those first couple of days it was the worst, and I was so bored. I had it easier too since I was asymptomatic, not like the rest of my family who were really sick.”

For Susan and her family, Covid-19 was not just the average flu since there was no vaccine to prevent them from getting it, and since there was a chance of long term effects and even death. Even though there has been recent progress in creating a vaccine, there is still a risk of affecting and possibly killing millions more which is why the CDC and health officials promote wearing masks around non-household members and to abide by social distancing rules.