Hi Who What Wear readers,
I’m writing to let you know that I have COVID-19. Thankfully, I’m going to be just fine. As personal accounts of COVID-19 from individuals in our communities are emerging, I decided to share my story, as I believe the more transparency out there the better. I cannot speak for all experiences; this is just mine, and I know I was lucky.
My diagnosis was a surprise. I typically have an immune system of steel and only get sick every few years. I am vigilant about my health and incredibly diligent about washing my hands. My husband jokes that I haven’t touched a doorknob since 2003—but I’d argue I haven’t touched one since the ’90s. This just shows me how easy it is to contract this virus. I am incredibly thankful that I have been home since March 10. When I think about all of the people I could have shared this virus with, it makes me so grateful for the stay-at-home orders around the country. I know I am fortunate that I could be tested, that I will recover, and that I am able to take the time to do so at home.
I’ve been sick for over three weeks. This started as what my doctors thought was a sinus infection. When that wouldn’t go away, they tested me for flu and other respiratory viruses, and the results said I have something called respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), which is a virus normally children get. When that didn’t go away, I was able to get tested for COVID-19. It was on the earlier side of the outbreak in Los Angeles, and my doctor was able to do a couple of tests per week for his patients with the most serious cases. We submitted my test, and a week later, it came back positive, so I have RSV and COVID-19. For me, it’s been similar to a very bad, really long flu. Everyone I’ve spoken to who has COVID-19 has very different symptoms from me (I never even had a fever) and from each other. This is a scary time to be sick, and I recommend speaking to your own doctor if you do start to feel any symptoms and consulting the CDC site as a resource. In case it’s helpful, here are some tips I received from my doctor:
- Avoid ibuprofen, as some research suggests it aggravates the virus.
- Rest and stay hydrated. I am adding electrolytes to my water.
- Hospitals only want you to come in if you are having shortness of breath. Otherwise, they are telling us to stay home so as to not infect more people.
Additionally, I want to share a charity close to my heart that I’ve been donating to during this time: Baby2Baby is providing essential items like diapers, formula, and hygiene items to children impacted by COVID-19. Also, Versed, the skincare brand I founded, is donating products to front-line health workers.
I also want to remind everyone that unless you need emergency care, the best thing you can do for yourselves and your community is to stay home. I'll be remaining in quarantine for the foreseeable future. I hope my story encourages you to continue abiding by the stay-at-home orders and tell everyone you know to do the same.
Take care of yourselves,