Family Fun

Days 8-14: Defeating the Nothing

When I wrote last Sunday, I was less symptomatic, Iliana was almost better, and Rob had returned to work.

On Sunday night, I had a very pleasant surprise. On a whim, I stuck my nose in a coffee can…and smelled coffee! It seemed that I was getting my sense of smell back in record time. At first, I had to spend time smelling things in the morning, to “wake it up.” But now I can smell everything pretty consistently, although not as strongly as I used to. I suspect it will continue to improve. Happily, this happened after I disinfected the apartment, so I was spared the overwhelming bleach smell! Rob and Iliana are starting to be able to smell things too, although much more slowly.

On March 9, 1,885 people in the US died of Covid. Also on that day, I was considered to be recovered. I was on day 10 since the onset of my symptoms and I had not had a fever in nearly a week. I was no longer contagious, and other than some lingering brain fog and sinus stuff, I was feeling good. It was time to return to work!

Being out of the apartment made me realize that I still had a lot of brain fog! Luckily, everyone was very accommodating at work. Being back was exhausting, but I loved seeing my students again.

The greatest irony of my situation is that, on the day I became symptomatic, teachers were cleared to get the vaccine in Texas. There was a sign-up for employees of our school, so I chose Friday, which was the latest date available.

Well, on Tuesday, I received notification that my appointment had been moved to that afternoon. I was very upfront about my situation, and they said that since I was on day 10 and had not received an infusion, I was good to go! I got the Pfizer vaccine, and I will be getting the second dose, even though they suspect that people who have had the virus develop full immunity after one dose.

Another fun fact about vaccines: people who have had the virus have crazy side effects after the first dose. On Wednesday, I was useless at work, the brain fog was so bad. I also had crazy muscle aches.

On Wednesday evening, I made it to my first yoga class since being sick. From the beginning of class, I experienced more mental clarity that I had since my symptoms began. The brain fog has stayed away from that evening on. By Friday, I was able to fully resume my duties at work.

During a surge in the pandemic, I had noticed that Air BNB prices downtown were very low. I suspected that the surge would be over by spring break, and it had been a year since we had last gone downtown. Usually we stay in Montrose, but this time we found a room in a high rise, right in the center of everything!

Friday was day 10 for Iliana, so we were safe to enjoy a weekend of normalcy.

We were greeted by a beautiful sunrise!

Our Jeep barely cleared the ceilings in the parking garage where it stayed parked while we rode our bikes around the city.

The high point of our day was a much-overdue ride on the Buffalo Bayou trail.

It was fun to have a day of normalcy, and in the evening, we set out to achieve my post-immunity goal of eating at an indoor restaurant. We rode our bikes around, but did not find anywhere open. Definitely a sad sign of the struggles of the past year.

We were on floor 28 of the building behind the restaurant

I was going to end this post with a reference to The Neverending Story, with the quote, “Falkor, it’s like the Nothing never was!”

But maybe we aren’t there yet.

We live in a world that has been very impacted by Covid. The streets are lined with closed businesses, where people have lost their livelihood. And nearly 2000 families lost loved ones to the virus on the day I recovered from it. There is a lot to heal, a lot to rebuild.

And yet we are moving forward. Spring break has always been a time to go out and do fun activities with Iliana, and we are looking forward to that this week. We have an appointment at the zoo on Monday, and I know we will find more fun outings to fill our week. We wear masks for social reasons, but we are no longer living under the threat of the virus. And I have no doubt that I will have my indoor dining experience by the end of the week!

So maybe we’re not at the part where it is like the Nothing never was. Maybe we are at the part where the Childlike Empress hands Bastien the grain of sand that is all that remains of her once great empire and tells him to make a wish. “As many as you wish. And the more you make, the greater Fantasia will be!”

Almost as if on cue, as soon as I finished writing this post, we saw a bunch of lights slowly making their way down the road outside our window. I closer look revealed that it was Critical Mass, and we could hear their music up on our balcony on the 28th floor. No, their numbers weren’t as insanely huge as they had been on the ride we joined years ago, but they were there, moving forward.

Next month we will join them.

25 thoughts on “Days 8-14: Defeating the Nothing”

  1. Here in Key West we have seen (and the avoided) a super spreader event as spring breakers invaded with few masks. Businesses did seem to be taking temps but the kids came across as selfish to me.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Wow, sometimes people’s stupidity impresses me. 😦 Taking temperatures is kind of a false reassurance too. The three of us only had a fever the first day, and it spiked and dropped, over and over. And the sad thing about the maskless spring breakers is that they are likely to spread it to the employees at the stores, resorts, etc.

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  2. Hi Bethany, a great post. Happy to hear you all have your sense of smell back and are doing well. So nice to see you all biking and having fun. Here we have been focusing on enjoying the nice days, getting out and having fun too. Beautiful pictures thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I don’t like to dwell in the “shoulda, woulda, coulda” but I can’t help but wonder what the outcome would have been if we all had taken this seriously at the beginning and had practiced safe habits. I’m so sorry that you were directly impacted but I’m happy that you are feeling better. My husband and I have had our second doses (we are old farts) and we are truly hopeful. Hang in there!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Nice to meet you, Bethany. I see how we have friends in common. I have subscribed to your interesting blog.πŸ™‚

    I am sorry to read about the health challenges in your family. It sounds like you have to really inform yourself about all of your options. Interesting about the side effects of the vaccine if you have had the virus. A day of normalcy sounds wonderful. A thought-provoking sentence β€œBut maybe we aren’t there yet.” I appreciate you sharing your story and the interesting photos.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I’m glad you are doing so much better. My daughter and I have not eaten in a restaurant in a year. We do some take out but stay away from any large groups of people and are always masked and gloved. Not taking any chances. Teachers should have been at the top of the list behind doctors and nurses. Then grocery clerks. We need those people. My daughter has worked from home for a year now and will continue through at least this summer. She works for a great company. There is no normal anymore. We just take it as it comes. We thought about going to the beach for her birthday next month but it’s still too risky and no fun when most places are closed. Life is all about change and we got that in spades. We are waiting at the bottom of the list though at my age, I could get my shot now. I’ll wait for all the teachers to get theirs.

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  6. Glad you are all feeling better. Here in the UK the Stay at Home order should finally be lifted on 29th March to coincide with the beginning of the school Easter holidays. I can’t ever remember being so excited to count down the days and for what? Sometimes normality, or at least something starting to edge towards it (shops, gyms and restaurants still won’t be open and we still have to keep 2 meteres apart), has a lot to be said for it.

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  7. I am glad you are recovering, feeling better, and getting your sense of smell back. Not being able to smell coffee would be torture for me! Teachers in our state (PA) are getting the J&J vaccine right now. I am not yet eligible for the vaccine, but I am hoping to be eligible soon. Normalcy is looking very appealing to me too!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Laurie! Lol, I texted everyone I knew when I could smell coffee! It was definitely cause for celebration. I hope you can get your vaccine soon. It has side effects, but they are not nearly as bad as having the virus.

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  8. Hi Bethany, I’m so glad you’re all feeling better and have avoided all the worst impacts of covid. It must be heartbreaking to see all those closed businesses and to hear of all those who are dying every day. Hopefully the vaccine will be the turning point and life will start to return to some sort of normal again where you are. I’m so grateful for how far away from it all we are in Australia and how little the virus has impacted us here – I feel a little bit guilty for how easy we’ve had it in comparison to other countries.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Leanne! I am so glad it didn’t effect you so much in Australia. It has been crazy here, and Texas hasn’t had all of the lockdowns/closures that some of the other states have had. I can’t imagine the teaching virtually for a whole school year…yuck… I will be so glad when enough people are vaccinated for things to get more normal!

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  9. I am SO GLAD that y’all were able to have a bit of normal!!! And there is just something about getting even that first dose that seems to bring hope if nothing else. I can’t wait to see what your Spring Break adventure brings. Stay well my friend!

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  10. Bethany, I read and “liked” the other day but had run out of energy to type a reply – so pleased to hear you’ve mended and that finding your “smell buds” again means you’ve way better, thank goodness you have recovered. And been able to get out and about again.

    As you know I’m in New Zealand where the virus has taken a quite different path to other countries, but my city has born the brunt of a few minor lockdowns because of the virus finding it’s way back into the community. Currently, we are all back on Level 1 (Level 0 is when the whole pandemic is over)

    But like your findings of restaurants closing – this has evolving here, where the owners either look at the bottom/profit margins or there are difficulties with leasing and such monetary objects. A few places (usually smaller) have decided to expand…many people lost their jobs and not even the wage subsidy was enough, many online cottage type industries have arisen with owners saying “I lost my job”… have no idea how well they are doing but with more and more people working from home, maybe their is this type of “underground market”

    I personally have been housebound even without the lockdowns or the virus for other reasons and actually I’m not missing as much as I thought…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Actually, it might be easier being housebound now, with more supports available (Zoom gatherings, grocery delivery, etc.).

      Our lockdowns were largely unsubsidized, although unemployment was increased for awhile, for people who were not considered to be self-employed (hair dressers are self employed in most cases, etc.) or business owners. It was not a good situation, and the government checks have not come close to off setting the lost paychecks for a lot of people. Then people like us got them, and we didn’t lose any income, so we are being sure to support local businesses with our unexpected money.

      Weird times, for sure.

      Liked by 1 person

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