Nickie Carter

Well, Mr. or Ms. COVID-19 finally found me. For nearly three years, I have been a very good girl, following all the recommended rules and wearing a mask, but somehow and somewhere the virus said “There is Nickie. She has avoided us for some time. Let’s get her!’’

So, Covid captured me.  When the unseen sickness/killer arrived in 2019, I listened carefully  and obeyed the rules. I stayed away from crowds, felt isolated, didn’t socialize, only texted or talked to friends, stayed close to my God at home reading his word, wore a mask if going outside, ordered my groceries from Wall’s Grocery in Blackshear. And believe me, I was among the first in line to receive a first vaccine in February 2021, took the second vaccine and also the recommended booster vaccine.

But a few days ago, I began to cough slightly, sneezed some, felt like I had a cold, perhaps congestion in my head. My body ached like I had the flu. I was  weak and even found that I had no taste when I ate. Some report slight Covid  symptoms and recover in a few days, some report more serious Covid side effects. I know the seriousness of Covid as it has touched my family, friends, and church family.

At this writing, after almost one week, I find myself still isolated, tired with fatique, but am told to rest, rest. Others I know who have survived Covid, suffered other long-term effects ranging from heart to lung situations. Chronic symptoms should send one to see a medical professional. Along with their help and medications, one fact is a Covid patient must stay hydrated; drink plenty of water.

Remember how many have died. According to computer researched data,  United States cases confirmed included 1,004, 693 deaths as of May 29, 2022. Georgia at this date reports 38,198 deaths.

Covid is a mysterious disease. Who knows why or how actually it is contracted. The hospital nurse who gave me an infusion, said usually after virus contact, Covid shows up in three days. Who knows? Opinions vary. But I must be honest. In recent weeks, I attended graduations where hundreds were and I, as most others, did not wear a mask.

A test in my doctor’s office verified I had the coronavirus and immediately my daughter nurse practitioner Andrea DeLoach and Dr.  Jill Coggans Bryant with whom she works at Waycross Internal Medicine, jumped to my rescue and took on the battle with me against Covid. After all, this invisible monster had already touched my life and my family: my youngest son was  hospitalized sometime ago, but overcame the dread disease; my nephew Max Sweat, who lived down the road from me, died from COVID-19 after refusing to take the vaccines and my precious neighbor who lived down the road from me and one whom I saw growing  up, also died from it. I could name others who were active family, church and community leaders, their lives cut short so unexpectedly because of Monster Covid.

When Covid tried to take my family members sometime ago, I went into action, taking food to them, but not getting near them. I placed food on a table on my son’s front porch and took food to my nephew, placing it on a barrel near his front door. He stood in his doorway on Hacklebarney Road. I didn’t know that would be the last time I talked to him. He died the next week in the hospital from lung complications caused by Covid. Sadly, because of his reasonings, he would not take the first vaccine.

Offering the  food remedies, my favorite get-well food had to be potato soup, as it has a good, strong base which seemed to nurture its patients. Covid victims might not have wanted to eat; most couldn’t taste the food, but I continued my food offerings.

Those experiencing symptoms of Covid should definitely test themselves first, if having a home test and if suffering severely with known symptoms contact your health provider. I asked my daughter as she was driving me home from treatment, “What would we do without doctors and nurses?’’ God has gifted them. Surely our area has the best of medical treatment from our doctors, nurses, to hospital treatment. I can honestly say this as I am a colon cancer survivor and live today because of medical personnel’s care through the years.

It seems one really can’t hide from Covid. It’s described as a coronavirus which you can get through contact with another person who has the virus. Covid illnesses have ranged from very mild (including some with no reported symptoms) to severe including illness resulting in death. Current reports say Covid is having a comeback. By now all know to wash their hands, spray with disinfectants and wear a mask.

I am among the most blessed ones as I have a medical team, one living behind me, which immediately prescribed liquids and an infusion. Other medicines help with the cold, cough, congestion or other symptoms. When Covid is mentioned, many begin describing their own thoughts -- most from hearing from other survivors. It seems everyone has a different opinion as to the seriousness of the virus.

Thankfully, I am on the road to a complete recovery, following doctor’s orders of rest, drinking liquids to stay hydrated and taking medications properly. I remember with great respect and love the dedication of our doctors and nurses who help all of us survive an invisible virus which tries to take our lives. I am grateful for the vaccines, the support from our government for tests and masks. I bow my head in gratefulness to my Great God for His faithfulness and allowing me to live some more days to love my children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, friends and this great nation with its beautiful creation. Not only  Covid, but so much heartache is saturating our world today-- from mass shootings, wars to deterioration of morality and division of people. So many ask,”Why does God allow such heartache?’’ The only reasoning I claim is for me to turn closer to my God, knowing “I can do all things through Him which strengthened me.’’

Come Mr. Covid, I have been ready for you, not expecting, but ready. My faith is the rock on which I stand. My worship of God is the bread that gives me life.