It Ain’t Over ’Till It’s Over

Two years and 327 days later, COVID made it into our castle.

For our family, the COVID-19 pandemic began in earnest on March 13, 2020. Friday the 13th; oh-so-appropriate. That afternoon my kids came home from school with suggestions from teachers that they might be off for a week or two due to the growing threat. Little did any of us know it was the last day of on-campus schooling in our community for the 2019-20 school year.

Since then, for various lengths of time, my wife and our three kids and I have stayed home, wiped down groceries with disinfectant sheets, wore masks, avoided crowds and so many other things that were suggested or proven to limit the potential for contracting the virus.

For a period in that first year, our family was at a higher risk than most. My wife is a registered nurse who volunteered for six months in the COVID ward of the local hospital system, putting herself at risk because she felt duty-bound. She held the hands of too many people struggling to take their last breaths, way more than anyone should have to. Every evening during her time on the COVID unit, she undressed in the garage after returning home from work, disinfected her shoes and rushed her scrubs, face mask and hair covering downstairs to wash them right away.

Finally, as soon as the COVID vaccine became available to each of us, we got poked in the arm. All five of us has had every booster allowed since then.

Using each of the precautions and best practices as a building block, from the beginning of the pandemic and across the ensuing years, months and days, we erected a protective barrier around our family and home.

It worked. As of last Wednesday, 1,057 days had passed since that fateful Friday the 13th and we were all still all clear.

It Was Bound to Happen

Then, last week, my wife tested positive.

She’d been sick for several days and her symptoms were getting worse by the day, if not by the hour. Finally we broke out one of the free test kits we’d received from the Biden administration. The instructions for this particular test said we needed to wait a full 15 minutes before evaluating the strip which shows either one line for a negative result or two lines for a positive.

But not even three minutes in – BOOM! – there were two clear lines, blaring brightly in blue and pink.

The moment my wife’s test screamed out Infected!, my daughter, son and I took COVID tests. My oldest daughter tested herself at collage. All the tests were negative, which was great, but it also meant my wife has had to quarantine for the past several days. Boy does that suck.

I was chagrinned, but not shocked. Thanks to sound, science-based communication and information sharing, we’ve understood that being vaccinated doesn’t mean we couldn’t get coronavirus. Rather, the vaccine reduces the severity of symptoms when one does get it.

Which is exactly what my rheumatologist told me about a year ago when I saw her. She figured all of us would get COVID eventually. The question wasn’t if we’d get it, but when and how bad it would be. And that, she said, depended a great deal upon whether the infected person had been vaccinated and boosted.

Still, I hoped that if/when the world is able to say the COVID-19 pandemic is over, my immediate family and I would be able to say we made it through unscathed, at least physically.

No such luck.

But not the end of the world, either. Literally or figuratively.

Don’t get me wrong – it sucks that my wife has COVID, feels like crap, can barely taste anything and hasn’t been able to leave our bedroom for days. But, thankfully, her symptoms, while bad, have not been catastrophic or life-threatening. And today is the last day she has to quarantine, so we’ll all be able to eat meals and spend time together again.

We’re still in great shape, overall, and since we are fully vaccinated it’s unlikely one of us will die from coronavirus at this point. That’s a supreme improvement to the situation we faced on March 13, 2020.

So, yeah, the walls of our Anti-COVID-19 fortress have been breached, but thanks to science we’re able to fight back and we still have defenders patrolling the ramparts.

COVID Stalks Us Still

Chances are if your fortress hasn’t been breached yet, it will be eventually. But if you’re like us, it won’t be the end of the world.

I am so thankful to the scientists and medical professionals, including my wife, for everything they’ve done and continue to do for all of us throughout this ongoing ordeal. Ongoing because, as Yogi Berra once said, “It ain’t over ’till it’s over.” COVID-19 is still out there, stalking us, hoping to infect people and take down covidiots who refuse the proper precautions. And it will keep spreading and mutating as long as the antivaxxers are out there.

So build your fortress. Remain vigilant. Repair any cracks in the stone and concrete as soon as they appear. ’Cause as far as the COVID-19 pandemic goes, ain’t nothin’ over yet.

ADDENDUM – Friday, February 17

My youngest daughter tested positive on Monday, February 13…

COVID Test, Positive

…and I tested positive this morning. The fatigue is brutal.

Positive COVID-19 Test

More COVID-Related Posts

Trump Blows Off Coronavirus… Until It Threatens Wall Street. – March 11, 2020

Coronavirus Pandemic – What Are Our Leaders Waiting For? – March 15, 2020

Dress Never Worn – March 22, 2020

Spring Coming, Temps Rising… But Coronavirus is Out There – March 27, 2020

North Dakota’s COVID-19 Concierges – April 7, 2020

Fargo, N.D., Brothers Receive State’s First “Good COVID Neighbor Award” – April 29, 2020

Luck is All That’s Left in This “Reopened” Coronavirus World. If You’re Lucky. – May 20, 2020

To the Class of 2020 – May 25, 2020

Reopening Should Not Be Part of School Planning Right Now – July 15, 2020

Schools Should Report Coronavirus Cases to Communities – Aug. 26, 2020

Coronavirus: Who Knew What When? – Sept. 14, 2020

Coronavirus “Smart Restart” Proves Anything But – Oct. 7, 2020

Fargo’s Meager Mask Mandate – Oct. 20, 2020

COVID and the Kids – Nov. 9, 2020

COVID Comments by Sanford Health CEO Put People at Risk – Nov. 20, 2020

One in Ten – Dec. 1, 2020

Welcome to North Dakota, a Longstanding Cividiotacracy – Jan. 18, 2021

Face to Face With COVID Pandemic Facilitators – Jan. 1, 2022

A Pissy Post – Jan. 12, 2022

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