It was a sudden shock, bolt from the blue, unbelievable, Indigestible news that my COVID-19 test report proved positive. A phone call at 10.30 pm from the testing center during a drizzling night caused jitters abrupt chills in me. I became nervous with heaviness in my heart and speechless. I thought, how to break this news to my wife and son at the time when they usually retire for the day, looking unrest in me, my wife and son felt there is something wrong with me.
I mustered the courage and informed them that I need to visit the hospital alone and take a few day’s rest. They were dumbfounded. Tears of my better half and son rolled from the eyes to their cheeks. Although he was preparing for his exams, he pestered me that he wants to accompany me to the hospital. I took some time to convince him and told, I have to visit alone no attendees are allowed in the hospital. They were sharp enough to understand I am COVID-19 positive.
They were in utter shock and petrified. Calls started pouring-in from wheels of government officials advising me to quickly visit the hospital as early as possible and an ambulance would reach in a few minutes. I made a fervent request to health officials that, I am asymptomatic and would easily isolate at home; they insisted I need to be hospitalized. I made arrangements for necessary things required for a hospital stay and rode my bike with fear, anxiety, and nervousness to COVID Care Centre
The Senior Consultant and well-wisher of mine spoke to me on arrival and made my admission hassle-free. No sooner I was allotted a bed, history was ascertained, to trace possible contact point of infection. I tried my level best to recollect from where I could have contracted the disease, but I could not. Chest X-ray, ECG, Blood investigations were done at late night. Oxygen saturation was tested which was around 97-98. I had no complaints other than loss of smell, loss of taste, mild heaviness in the head, warm body (thermometer showing 98 degrees) and fatigue. I was put on medication (antibiotics) and necessary drugs and advised to take good rest.
I am a middle-level manager of the hospital involved in the process of counseling patients. We are the ones who instruct people to wear masks, follow social distancing, wash hands frequently with soap and water. I always believed that my immunity was good and can never be infected from the virus. Soon I realized how complacent I was. Day 2 of Hospitalization, I came to terms with the disease and resolved to fight the disease. In the hospital bed, I relaxed as much as possible.
Fellow Doctor whom I knew for years advised me not to perform too much exercise as the viral load may increase and may end up with breathing difficulties. I sat on the stool did light breathing exercises which I had been doing since a couple of years. Light Yogic postures on the bed, long time meditation to bring the body, the mind under control. I listened to the devotional songs, sung by Pandit Bhimsen Joshi and discourses by his holiness Shri. Siddeshwar Swamiji.
I have been a staunch advocate, proponent; follower of the philosophy health is wealth, I walk 3-3-4 Kms every day, expose my body to healthy sunlight for at least 15-20 mins each day, perform regular Yoga, Pranayama since the decade. I also have been drinking milk laced with turmeric since the 3-4 years before going to bed. I believe I am mentally and physically strong; I am as flexible as water to adapt to any situation, which has come handy in this hour of crisis.
Another big blow came to me when my wife and son who were advised by authorities to go for tests found COVID positive. They also joined me in hospitalization with tears rolling through eyes. No one to console, unwillingly both of them got admitted, fortunately, both of them were asymptomatic. I reassured them nothing would go wrong and keep praying to almighty god.
I being healthy and asymptomatic started motivating other patients to be cheerful, encouraged them to be steadfast and face the consequences of the disease with calmness. The majority of them were hospital staff of the young age group, few of the patients were not connected to the health care industry. I found COVID +ve with no history of Diabetes, Blood Pressure, Heart, or respiratory disease can easily come out of the disease without any complications.
However, Patients with associated diseases particularly older age groups may need Oxygen support and intensive care. A timely and healthy diet, fruits and medicines were served to us. We were given good care for 10 days with no major complications, re-swab proved negative and discharged from the hospital. Consultants, Hospital administrators and management of the hospital called us and encouraged us to remain cool and calm. We are advised home quarantine for one week, we are slowly recuperating to normalcy.
The Doctors, Nursing and other staff in PPE Kit are under tremendous work pressure and are serving in hostile conditions. Medical/Nursing Staff are trying their level best to serve the patients in adverse circumstances. Patients need to cooperate with ward staff and shouldn’t demand any services unless it really warrants their health conditions. The majority of staff members who have served in COVID wards have been victims of the disease and admitted to the same ward for treatment. One must understand the health care delivery in the coming few months will be fragile as the majority of the staff working in COVID wards are likely to fall sick, with no working hands available. This is the time to introspect among the citizens, particularly the sick, aged population needs to be alert and avoid getting infected. I appeal to all to remain at home, do light workouts, meditation and develop a positive attitude in and towards life.
I had not traveled since Jan, 2020, not in touch with anyone flown from a foreign nation, had not been to the market, a crowded place for 3-4 months. I was mainly restricted to home and hospital. I never missed wearing masks, maintained social distancing, had washed my hands more than anyone used sanitizers frequently. Unfortunately, If I could be a victim, anyone could be. Please remain Calm in an adverse situation and you can kill Coronavirus.
Stay Home, Stay Safe.