WEAR A MASK! WEAR A MASK! WEAR A MASK (and wash your hands & social distance)

I thought it worth sharing my weekend experience that I spent 10 hours in the local hospital’s COVID ward over the weekend and it was one of the scariest episodes of my life.

I cannot stress enough to my friends, family and followers…..

WEAR A MASK!

WASH YOUR HANDS (regularly outdoors, indoors and everywhere in between)!

SOCIAL DISTANCE (and stay at home when the lockdown is in place and keep your distance when out shopping, working, exercising or anywhere else when in public)! 

So the story behind my hospital stay is…..

I’ve had a temperature on/off over the last 2 weeks….. and at night in bed…… trouble breathing and a wee bit of a cough (when lying flat) and more tired than usual, but in general, nothing serious.  No big deal.

I’d spoken to my GP over the phone twice and on hearing on Friday that I still had a temperature and was a little unwell, she emailed me a COVID test referral.

In the meantime, I hurt my shoulder early on…….which got worse……and I ended up calling an ambulance late Saturday around midnight (although I really only needed a taxi to get it checked out at the local E.R.).

The ambulance guys checked my temperature before taking me downstairs and on finding it high, rang ahead to warn the hospital and then did the mandatory trip direct to the COVID ward!

In the ward, the atmosphere was spooky.   Eerie.   Surreal.

YOU DON’T WANT TO GO THERE!

I was very nervous about being in that ward.    I couldn’t help but look around at the other patients with some interest.  Some of them were very unwell/ill.   I was just fine (in comparison).

The room was filled with tension and my heart went out to the nurses, doctors and hospital staff who cleaned the cubicles – floors, beds, equipment, walls & ceilings every time a patient was discharged, or moved on to ICU etc.  They all had full protective gowns, masks, plastic head shields (for the nurses) and gloves (and they changed gloves and sanitised their hands every time they moved from patient to patient doing observations).

Yes, every patient was touched with a fresh set of gloves.   If you pressed the Nurse buzzer on your bed, the nurse had to change gloves and sanitise when she came to attend to you.   You weren’t allowed to go to the corridor toilets/rest room.

Commodes are a funny thing.   More like a King/Queen sitting on a throne.   I kept drinking water with my sore/dry throat and then of course………kept needing to pee  😀

Even the ceilings and walls were cleaned after each patient was moved.

I was a wee bit breathless and uncomfortable breathing in the ward initially as I’m allergic to bleach or strong chemicals, perfumes and strongly scented body products.

The scent of serious illness is not one I like to wear.   I’ve had enough over the last 25 years.

But I seemed to finally get used to the strong odour of chemicals and started to breathe more easily.   I’d held my nose and breathed through my mouth enough for one night.

YOU DON’T WANT TO GO THERE!  (if you’ve been in a COVID ward you’ll know what I’m talking about).

The sound of someone struggling to breathe for hours and hours is something I’d like to unhear.

I felt so much compassion for the suffering of the bed occupants.  

We were all put in the same Coronavirus ward if you had a temperature and weren’t allowed into the ordinary E.R. (Emergency Room).

After an Xray of my shoulder (and my chest, as I’d told them I was having issues with breathing when lying flat in bed which I’d attributed to my worsening heart condition), they did a COVID test.

My bloodwork and Xrays were all fine and they wrote out a referral for my GP to send me off for a shoulder ultrasound in case I’d torn something.   They did a COVID test.  Because I had a high temperature they wouldn’t let me go home in a taxi, so rang and booked a St John’s Ambulance driver to take me home and carry my bags upstairs to my 1st floor apartment and ensure I was safely ‘tucked indoors’ in my apartment.  I was told not to leave it until I had the COVID test result which would take 48 hours to be processed.   I waited just on 4 hours in a chair in my cubicle as the ambulance driver already had a list of people to transport.

9.00a.m. this morning my mobile phone sounded with a text message.

COVID test was NEGATIVE.   HURRAY!   WHOOPEE!

So, on waking with a sorer throat, coughing a wee bit and an ongoing temperature, it appears my body is fighting an ordinary virus or throat infection.

No big deal.   A little of my favourite remedy of homemade chicken soup with lots of fresh ginger and a whole bulb of garlic (about a dozen or so ‘cloves’) will be my personal treatment.   Lots of hot lemon juice and honey will be on my drink menu.

PHEW!

So I implore all of you, in an urban environment especially, WEAR A MASK outside your home and in the community.   If you live in another state or country, wear a mask when you can’t socially distance.

Foggy glasses and muffled voices are a small price to pay for wearing a (correctly adjusted) facial mask and avoiding possibly contracting The Virus.

The news revealed there were only 116 new virus cases in my state of Victoria in the last 24 hours, but sadly, 15 more deaths – all of those in the old age sector – men and women in their 80s, 90s AND over 100).

So, Melbourne and regional areas of my state are winning the battle against the second wave of COVID 19, but this morning our Premier has proposed that Melbourne would continue with a state of emergency for the next 12 months, if no vaccine is found.   Obviously, the 6-week lockdown was not going to be the end of it.

We are winning with the strict lock-down and night-time curfew in Melbourne, but don’t be complacent.   Don’t think it ‘can’t happen to you’.

It could have happened to me and I have been mainly stuck indoors over the last 18months and have obviously caught some ordinary virus despite face mask, hand sanitiser and so on when I did go out to the pharmacy/shops.

This ordinary virus might have been the extraordinary COVID VIRUS.

IT CAN HAPPEN TO YOU.   DON’T TELL ME you’re young, fit and healthy and never get sick.

I’M NOT TRYING TO BE  an ALARMIST, OVER-CAUTIOUS or CREATE SOME PANIC.   I’M USING SOME COMMON SENSE now that this current CORONAVIRUS has touched over 9,000,000 million people around the world (and probably more, as there’s bound to be some asymptomatic folk out there not tested).   To be honest, I’m getting a bit sick of it filling the news on TV, but on the other hand, don’t want to miss any new development or new rules that have arisen overnight, so watch a bit each day.   But I do have the option of turning the TV and computer OFF I suppose.

Take a little time to consider how you’re going to adjust to the new ‘normal’.   Consider how you’re going to adjust to your new lifestyle.  Take the time, not to wait for the VIRUS to go away……but perhaps started thinking about where you might take your next holiday.   Perhaps consider how you’re going to work or earn your living in the future.

Start thinking about some local trips and short holidays.   Explore your immediate area once the Lockdown has lifted (and I’m sure Melbourne’s lockdown will eventually be lifted).  Consider some new hobbies, sport or exercise routine.

Living in Nature doesn’t have to be Overseas.

There’s a wealth of local parks, gardens, nature reserves, hills, mountains, coastal beaches and country destinations you can look forward to.

Take the time to ‘SMELL THE ROSEs’……locally…….and care for your community.

 

This sun came out from behind the clouds earlier today and the House Sparrows came to the birdbath for a drink and play in the water.  I missed capturing the male Superb Fairy-wren when he came to visit a bit later within the lens frame.

Enjoy your day.

Live each day Mindully, fully appreciating what you have, not worrying about what you have not.

I’m way behind with blog reading, but my YouTube addiction got extended to funny babies and toddlers yesterday afternoon when I got home and I laughed myself silly.   Truly, a good belly laugh is the best medicine.

Try it.