Having Covid-19 changed my perspective, my grades and my attitude

Having+Covid-19+was+one+of+the+worst+experiences+of+my+life.

Joshua Todd

Having Covid-19 was one of the worst experiences of my life.

by Joshua Todd, Editor

The short URL of the present article is: https://lhslance.org/praaz

The start of  2021 was full of hope. I celebrated with my family, eagerly waiting for the transformation from a miserable 2020.  As soon as the clock struck midnight, I felt as if there was supposed to be some sort of magical change that all the world’s problems would suddenly be solved.

I was wrong.

The Covid-19 pandemic only got worse. Cases skyrocketed and soared to levels that haven’t been seen before. Frederick County’s positivity percentage climbed above the state average.  And unluckily for me, I became one of those infected citizens.

It was an incredibly scary thing to face. We’ve all seen the resulting deaths. I had been seeing news about the overwhelmed hospitals and overworked doctors working in them; I had been seeing the grief and loss that families were going through after losing their loved ones.

And now it was my turn.

But this story isn’t unique to me. It’s something that many students at Linganore have had to face. From freshmen to seniors, even though each victim shares the commonality of having the virus, the ways that it presents itself in students is unique. Each person has their own story.

For me, my symptoms were persistent. I couldn’t taste or smell. Everything had the same bland monotonous flavor. It was disgusting.

For days I was in a dream, not really sure If I was fully awake or sleeping. This disrupted my sleep schedule to a point where I slept all day and was awake all night. I had an intense pain all over my torso. It had the same intense stinging of a sunburn, just without the radiating heat. I later found out that this is called Cutaneous Hyperesthesia, and is a rather rare symptom to have. And, of course, each move I made, made me feel like I had just run a mile.

For junior Alaina Cox, her symptoms were different.

Cox said, “My whole family had it. It was the worst I’ve ever felt when being sick. Shortness of breath, fatigue, loss of appetite, and a lot more. Even getting out of bed to go to the kitchen seemed like a marathon. Especially during the winter with snow, my driveway turned into ice because none of us had the strength to go and shovel.”

Senior Jenna McLain also had the virus. “It was terrible. It took us by surprise as a family. We weren’t prepared at all, so we didn’t have much groceries prepared and, of course, we couldn’t go out to get any. I had every symptom you could imagine. It’s been months later, and I’m still experiencing the loss of taste and smell. My body ached–and every now and then it would hurt to inhale.” 

I wasn’t at all high risk or had any pre-existing conditions to make the virus worse in my body, and I had a horrible time living with it and getting over it. I can only imagine what my case would have been if I had a complicating factor.

My symptoms lasted for several weeks.

But what happens after a student gets over Covid-19? With a moderate to severe case, it really makes a lasting impact. Some symptoms don’t really go away, and a shortness of breath, with a lack of smell/taste can stay for months.

You can also walk away from the experience feeling different than how you did before.

Living through it is it terrifyingly vivid. It gives a stronger sense of urgency to protect yourself from it in anyway you can and an even stronger dread for people completely ignoring it.

Another major thing that really isn’t discussed is the amount of work needed to makeup after recovery. I know it sounds grumbly, but unless teachers are kind and excuse the majority of the work missed, students have to makeup two or more weeks worth of graded assignments for four classes. This is all while still having to complete the new work being assigned each day. When you throw in the school policy of two days given for late work to be turned in, this all can be draining, exhausting, and incredibly stressful.

Having missed two weeks of work, and with the semesters end in just a few days, I have been working around nine hours each day. Fortunately, I have worked with teachers, and the end is in sight.  A fresh start for Semester 2 is a relief for everyone.

Cox has also had a problem with this. She said, “I’m still behind with some work. I’ve already been struggling from assignments because of school online, so that combined with being terribly sick and having no motivation made me extremely behind. It has been very stressful, especially because this all happened near the end of the semester.

It’s incredibly important that everyone follows the CDC’s safety guidelines for prevention of Covid-19. Wear a mask, stay 6 feet apart, and clean heavily touched surfaces often.