My Corona: Heads and Tails — the latest in a Darien man’s journal of a his coronavirus journey
Darien resident Daniel Coonan, father of three, has given The Darien Times to reprint his journal entries going forward as he battles with the symptoms of COVID-19. To read the full journal, go here.
Sunday, April 12 — Heads and Tails
This virus is fickle. It makes is difficult to gauge what can be classified as a marked improvement. Symptoms come and go by the day. They worsen or improve in an instant. Recently, the days started to bifurcate.
I’m sitting here alone in the spare bedroom as I have for the last sixteen days. Today is Easter and it is going pretty much the way the last three days have. Right now I’m heading into the back half of the day and I’m not looking forward to it.
Below isn’t a play by play of an actual day but more a composite of what I’ve settled into:
7:30am: Wake in a haze to check on symptoms. Throat is a bit sore and headache is definitely there. Head is cloudy and whole body aches. Take various medicines. Chug water.
8:00am: Have coffee and breakfast. The coffee helps with the headache but also kicks off my heart palpitations so I need to balance that out. Wife makes me eggs and toast.
8:30am: Get in gear. Make bed, straighten up and write down a list of things that I want to accomplish today. Find this gives me some structure and helps avoid boredom and anxiety.
9:00am: Shower, get changed and put laundry into a trash bag for later cleaning. The steam makes me cough pretty bad but overall it feels therapeutic.
9:30am: Do stretching, breathing and meditation. I pick really light options and quit some when they feel too strenuous. I cough a bit but these exercises improve my mood.
10:30am: Lie on stomach (to help my lungs) on the bed and read a book — one that isn’t about pandemics. Actually feeling pretty good at this point. Maybe I’m getting better.
11:30am: Sit in the chair to switch up position and click through different articles to see if there are any developments. Also chug water and sift through social media. Feeling almost normal.
12:30pm: My wife makes me lunch. I sit and eat in the loft area and watch TV. Feeling a bit sleepy with a minor headache returning.I’ll take heads.1:30pm: Do some breathing exercises followed by putting on a sweatshirt and curling up in bed. Getting cold even though the temperature in the room is increasing.
1:45pm: Watching a show on my tablet in bed and start to crash. My body starts to shut down. My headaches increase and I’m completely fatigued. I fade into a nap.
3:30pm: Wake with my head buzzing and body tingling. My chest is tight and my breathing feels weaker. My throat hurts. I lie in bed and put a show back on the tablet. I get up to have water and some other things but mostly stay in bed.
5:00pm: Phone rings with an incoming video call. I talk to my wife and kids as well as my parents. My lung capacity is limited when I talk.
5:30pm: Sit down and write Think back hazily to the day before but thankful I have jotted down some small notes and thoughts along the way. Feeling increasingly ill at this point but not completely terrible.
6:00pm: Time for dinner. Eat while watching the news in the loft area and then return to the bedroom for a breathing exercise. I do this now as I know the chest tightness is coming.
7:00pm: Read a book in bed as the tightness comes and the breathing starts to feel increasingly shallow. Can’t concentrate so flip through social media. Responding to people, reading updates and passing time.
8:00pm: Lying in bed and feeling much worse again. All the symptoms re-emerge but I’m focused on the the breathing, the chest tightness and the heart palpitations. This is the worst part of the day. Just curl up and watch shows on my tablet.
10:00pm: Exhausted but the symptoms and anxiety are keeping me awake. I take something to help me sleep.
10:30pm: Shut the tablet and sleep.I wake the next morning and hope for a marked improvement. Will today bring more of the same?