There are weeks when I get this blog written on Wednesday. Then there are weeks, like this one, where I am closing in on Saturday night and I don’t have the blog ready to go.

This week I seem to have been managing the fatigue and inflammation that has been with me since I had covid back in 2020. For a couple of days I was experiencing incredible pain in my foot. Yesterday and today, I have been able to just get a few things done then I have to lay down and rest.

Sympathy and Symptoms

One of the inner conversations that I have about all this goes something like, “Stop feeling sorry for yourself and just get on with it!”  I can trace the origins of this back to my early years when my father would tell me that the aches and pains I was feeling were just “growing pains”.

While I don’t remember being an overly dramatic kid who used stomach aches and headaches to get out of doing chores or for added TLC, it may have been just a cheap ploy for sympathy. So, that legacy makes me call into question just whether what I am experiencing is just a yearning for someone to comfort me or whether the physical distress is worthy of complaint.

And, when I parse out my symptoms, they are relatively benign and are certainly not worthy of a visit to the ER. Still, I can easily go full-catastrophe and imagine all kinds of deadly, untreatable diseases festering in my body.

Talking Myself Down

So, like so many these days, I searched out my symptoms on various websites, determined that since I still had pulse and breathing, and wasn’t bleeding, that I would probably make it through the night. And, that is exactly what happened.

The damnable thing about long-covid though is that I never know when I am going to be compromised or for how long. In looking for a cause, there really wasn’t anything special or out of the ordinary this past week. It has been a bit colder than usual and there is more pollen in the air. Both of these are potential triggers for my immune system to react. Typically, once I light on a plausible explanation, my anxiety levels tend to recede and I get on with my life.

As a Consequence, I Am Learning to Compromise

What I have learned, however, is that I need to pay attention to my body’s need for rest after one of these episodes. This is only problematic in that the typical prescription for improving my overall health involves being more active. So, I must compromise. For this week, that means writing a shorter blog.

Last week the PBS Newshour did a segment on folks living with long covid. It was very validating for me, as many of the folks they interviewed share experiences with the disease similar to those I experience. If you didn’t see it, please click on the link. It will help you understand what so many of us are living with.

3 responses to “Long Covid Got to Me This Week”

  1. nan sullivan Avatar
    nan sullivan

    those anxiety spins-if we could eradicate them….

  2. Tim Gieseke, MD Avatar
    Tim Gieseke, MD

    Living with daily uncertainty unfortunately is a common problem well know to people with bad backs/necks, migraines, fibromyalgia syndrome, and many other chronic illnesses that we poorly understand. Unfortunately, balancing the safety of medical interventions with their burdens is a fine line. Prescriptions for regular exercise statistically are helpful, but hard to consistently apply with these entities. This leads back to the sad truth of somehow learning to live with less control over ones day to day functional capacity.

  3. Merinell Avatar

    “Father Knws Best” Maybe these ARE growing pains, but of a different ilk than we usually think. I too have “Long CoVid” and know exactly what you are talking about. With cancer, I have to decide who to blame! Life goes on. RAH!

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