Excerpt from the fall 2021 issue of The Extension
Most extended families have their COVID tales. Though far too many cases end tragically, most of us live to tell our stories. My husband, David Barr, and I became sick simultaneously after a trip to Nashville to visit family, and by the second day we were sure we had COVID. A test at CVS confirmed our suspicions.
You may have read that while being vaccinated may not entirely prevent you from contracting COVID, it will most likely keep you out of the hospital. That was our experience. David had a cough, headache, and fatigue for about a week to 10 days. Then he was pretty much over it. I, on the other hand, had all of that plus I lost all sense of smell and taste for almost three weeks. It is surprising how difficult it becomes to eat when you can’t identify what you are chewing. I am slowly regaining smell and taste. Yesterday, I peeled a perfectly ripe peach and relished the exquisite signature taste of late summer.
People always ask how we got it. The honest answer is “I don’t know.” Though I exposed everybody on the WSURA Board, no one came down with the illness and all those who tested were negative. No one in our family was infected. Our best guess is that I picked it up at a crowded Louisville McDonalds when we stopped for lunch. The drive through line stretched for what seemed like miles, so I went inside to place our order. After all, I was vaccinated!
Every month we learn more about the virus, how it spreads, and what we can do to protect ourselves. If I went into that McDonalds today, I would be sure to wear a mask. I am more hesitant to enter public spaces now than I was a few months ago. We will probably be dealing with this pandemic until next spring, if not longer. Check your mask supply, stock-up on books, and record a few movies. It’s better to be patient than to be a patient.