I haven’t posted anything in a while. For those of you who follow me, you might find that interesting since I just returned from Ghana, West Africa the first part of this month. The trip was fantastic! Chris, my oldest child (Felicia), my cousin Hansel and his wife (Martha); we all had a great time. It was indeed the journey of a lifetime. I did one post, dated January 9 and you haven’t seen anything from me since. The reason covid-19.
There were twenty of us on this ten-day tour of Ghana, excluding several tour-company staff who worked hard to make this a wonderful experience. We returned home on January 5. It was great to be back home. Except for the free covid-19 tests Chris and I had at our local health department to board the plane on our way to Ghana, we spent a significant amount of money for testing: $300 upon arrival at the Kotoka International airport in Accra, and $240 at a private lab to board the plane for our return trip to the U.S. All these tests were negative, giving us a false sense of security, as we spent hours flying and waiting in airports.
A few days after our return to the U.S., Chris and I started to have cold-like symptoms. It was our plan to have another covid-19 test a week after our return home. And so, we had tests done on January 12 at a local drive-in testing site provided by the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS). The technician who performed our nasal swabs, informed me that there would be a rush on my tests because I have multiple myeloma. I’ve written about this before. Multiple Myeloma is cancer of the blood plasma cells. I know, it sounds horrible; however, I’ll be a twenty-one-year survivor as of March 12. There are tens of thousands of myeloma patients who haven’t been able to make that statement.
As I wrestled with persistent fever of around 99 to 101 degrees, I got a call the day after the swabs were performed from my primary care physician, who is on the faculty of UAMS, as well the director of the UAMS Family Medicine Clinic. Of course, I knew why she was calling before she explained. My covid-19 test was positive. Chris received news of her positive test later during the same day. Both our primary care physicians (UAMS docs.) recommended we have an infusion of Bamlanivimb. This is an investigational drug, being used within the first ten days of the appearance of covid-19 symptoms for patients who aren’t hospitalized. It works to lessen symptoms and prevent hospitalization.
As of today, January 26, both Chris and I are doing much better. Her experience has been far worse than mine, however. She has spent a lot of time sleeping, not eating, and drinking sufficiently, and just not feeling worth a darn overall. I’m happy to say though that as of today we haven’t had fever in the last tree to four days. Chris is still coughing. I, on the other hand, took a short ride on my bicycle this morning. The light is glimmering strongly at the other end of the tunnel.
In case you’re wondering about others in our tour group. We’ve been in touch with all of them, and none has been infected with this horrible disease. I’m not convinced we contracted it in Ghana, instead somewhere during our travel time. We won’t be taking anymore trips until this pandemic has faded from the planet for the most part. I’m still glad we took this trip, though.
I’m old and blessed…hope you will be too.