SECTIONS
Pampanga
Tuesday, October 26, 2021
PAMPANGA

Viray: Days of Covid-19

In and Out of Court

I

AUGUST 19, 2021, Thursday – I had an upset stomach. I could not take my maintenance medicine.

II

August 20, 2021, Friday – I had no appetite. I could not take my breakfast. I attended and interviewed the applicants for promotions of the City Hall from 8:30 a.m. to 12 noon through Webex.

At 12, I was with Mayor’s group (Edsa) at Executive House, Heroes Hall. Mike Quizon was joking. The girls in confidence – Nicole, Ems, Rizzel and Gisel exchanged views on fiscal management. I tried two spoonfuls of “monggo,” my favorite but no go.

“I am not feeling well so please excuse me,” I told Edsa and left.

I had fever – 38 degrees Fahrenheit. My wife placed me in isolation. I could not take my maintenance medicines including “Biogesic.” I vomited the pills. I could not take any solid. I took Glucerna liquids.

III

August 21, 2021, Saturday – I submitted to a swab test at Del Rosario. A simple test was not that easy because my taste revolted. I resisted the medicine now and the swab paraphernalia like hell. I ordered food from Perfect Loaf – lumpia, dinuguan in Nepo. At 12 noon – I could not eat. I slept. I could not take my medicine. For the first time, I counted the acquaintances who died from coronavirus disease (Covid-19).

IV

August 22, 2021, Sunday – The swab test came out positive. Our Del Rosario’s reliable officer-in-charge, Amy Catacutan confirmed the dreaded news – I had the Covid-19 virus. My wife was to say the least worried. My daughter (Raissa) in the US called her brothers – Raymond and Rosco to take charge personally. They made arrangements – I had to receive medical care immediately. Raissa: “Don’t worry about finances.” Raymond: “He should be hospitalized.” Rosco: “I had to attend to his medical needs.”

At 2 p.m. – Rosco brought me to Green City Hospital. There were many patients – terrifying, especially to the weak of heart and weak of pockets. I was on the waiting list – patient no. 73. No room available. Patients and families scraped for oxygen tanks, medicines and rooms. I waited. Patients had difficulty in breathing. I was attended to at around 6 p.m. Raymond had to assure the hospital that we have the capacity to pay. At that point, I was billed to P68,000 for laboratories and Remdesivir. An agreement was reached that I would be on “Home care arrangement”- meaning I have to be “admitted” to the hospital though I would isolate at home. The hospital agreed to supervise and provide medicines, even if I was confined at home (St. Jude). We paid.

We went home at 9 p.m. after waiting for eight hours in the emergency room. Sometimes, a high sugar is an advantage because “sleeping is no problem.”

V

August 23, 2021 is Monday. I received a second dose of Remdesivir thru Green City in my house at P10,000 per dose. I could not take solid foods still. Glucerna gave me some relief.

Rosco was not contented with the way I was attended to. He called on his hospital (JBL) where he was working. He found one vacant hospital bed at JBL.

At 2 p.m., he caused my transfer officially from Green City to JBL. Since my hospitalization, my youngest son never left my bedside. He was solicitous of all that I need. I told myself “You are one lucky father.”

The JBL isolation room is new. It has an airconditioner and a comfort room. My son, with PPE, stayed with me – feeding me and supervising my medicine intake. He was reassuring as he told me “We can do this together.” My financial woes ceased from my transfer from private to public hospital. Besides, the JBL crew was more sympathetic considering that my son-nurse is their employee. I was able to eat my full meal with “Swam Mais.” Taking my medicines was not an ordeal anymore although I had to endure “blood taking” because my artery collapsed all too often.

VI

August 24, 2021, Tuesday I had a great taste of hot coffee. Good for the stomach. I had no difficulty in breathing. For the first time, I realized that my complete dose of vaccination has saved my life. I counted the friends I have – Edsa, Atty. Caguiat, Engr. Bill Tiqui, Engr. Caylao and many more. I am grateful for friends and family.

At 8 p.m., I received my third dose of Remdesivir. Besides, there appears no charge.

VII

August 25, 2021, Wednesday – I read the column of Joel Butuyan in the Philippine Daily Inquirer that he was hit by the virus despite his vaccination. I reminded myself that I was not that young anymore at 73 and I had high blood and high sugar.

At 8 p.m., I received my fourth dose of Remdesivir. My appetite has slowly returned.

VIII

August 26, 2021, Thursday – I missed my work at the City Hall. I received a get well card from my co-employees. My daughter texted me from the United States – “No matter the distance I will always be a part of you as you are a part of me. I always feel proudest when I’m told I’m a lot like you. Thank you for such a wonderful dad.” The messages lifted my spirits.

At 8 p.m. – I received my fifth dose of Remdesivir.

IX

August 27, 2021, Friday – At 6 a.m., I told my son, Rosco, “I’ll not forget that you risked your life in order to save mine.” Rosco just smiled and said, “I am your son. I will have to exert efforts towards your recovery.”

At 8 p.m. – Rosco placed my sixth Remdesivir intravenously.

X

August 28, 2021, Saturday – My oxygen level is 96. No need for an oxygen tank. I could breathe on my own.

At 8 p.m. – Rosco patiently placed my seventh Remdesivir.

XI

August 29, 2021, Sunday – I ordered “sinigang na kambing.” My friend, Bill Tiqui kept on sending all kinds of food including kamaro, paksiw and pangat.

At 8 p.m. – I received my eight Remdesivir.

XII

August 30, 2021, Monday – I feel relieved. I had no discomfort anymore. Except for the collapsed arteries in extracting blood for tests and the thunderbolt pain, I had no complaints.

At 8 p.m. – I received my ninth Remdesivir.

XIII

August 31, 2021, Tuesday – I missed my ornamental plants. I planted some “rubber” trees and in my mind, I see new life, new sprouting leaves not different from mine.

At 8 p.m. – I received my tenth and last (hopefully) Remdesivir.

XIV

September 1, 2021, Wednesday – I flexed my muscles. I could now afford to smile.

XV

September 2, 2021, Thursday – I had to undergo swab test to confirm that my Covid-19 is gone. I could feel that it had deserted me.

XVI

September 3, 2021, Friday – “You are now negative of the Virus,” Rosco proclaimed. With the grace of the Almighty, I conquered Covid-19.

I was out of the hospital at 3 p.m.

Lessons learned:

* Vaccines lessened the impact of the infection.

* Early medication is crucial.

* Family support and friends’ assurance are essential to the patient.

* Resolve to recover at all times; never yield nor surrender.

* The pandemic respects no one but fights. After all, it’s your life that is at stake.


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