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  • Writer's pictureKadiatou Tubman

Catching COVID

At this point I'm pretty certain I have the virus. Despite social distancing for nearly two weeks, I live with two people who cannot work from home. Last week, around Wednesday, my partner and I both fell ill. He woke up in the middle of the night in chills. It was a fever. Over the next couple of days we both experienced headaches, sore throats, body aches, etc. The fever left after the first 3 days but other symptoms remained. I haven't had my sense of smell for the last 2 days (literally cannot smell a thing but I can breathe perfectly fine). Every morning since getting sick we've called the NY State Coronavirus hotline requesting a test. Each time we were told that all we can do is wait for a call back. We figure since we're "asymptomatic" and young it'll take a minute to hear back. Right now, I just don't know which exhausts me more: the failed system, being sick, or the gaslighting from friends/distant-family/folks who think I'm experiencing a "cold" or "allergies" during a damn pandemic. If someone tells you they aren't feeling well, please believe them.

Updated April 1:

On Monday our results came back and we both tested positive for COVID19. Initially, I was relieved at the results. I mean, I was right! (See previous post.) But then anxiety crept up and I found myself grieving the trauma, bias, fear, and violence this virus has unleashed and revealed around the world and at home.

Fortunately for me, the hardest part isn't being sick with COVID19. No, the hardest part is silencing the shame, trusting my gut, and believing in my truth, especially when others do not. See, I know how to be strong. I know how to hold back tears and disguise or downplay discomfort even when the pain is too much. But during the last 10 days I refused to do that. I advocated hard for that test and I asked others to believe and advocate for me too. I did that for myself and my partner. I did that because it's the responsible and selfless thing to do for everyone, not just me and my family.

We are both doing fine; our symptoms have been very mild but we're in quarantine for another two weeks. Yesterday we played charades, took lengthy naps, ate homemade pizza, and watched a ton of (terrible) TV.

Take care of yourselves and each other.

Hold your government and capitalism accountable.

Stay home if you can.

Be mindful of those who cannot.

Protect the most vulnerable.


And fight for a just, humane, and loving future beyond this virus.

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