So many symptoms, seem critical but darn it, WHY dont they make sense?
I did not want to go to the Emergency room in this first place. I have no job, no income, and honestly cant afford any more setbacks until I am gainfully employed. I called my favorite family doctor, and as she was out spoke to the nurse. I began with asking her to tell me I am ok to stay home. No I dont have COVID, I have sheltered at home all of May, and only left 2 times, both times to go to the pharmacy, and both times in a mask. My BP is normal, I have no fever, and never had. “Migraines, Dizziness, Shallow breathing, hard to get air but not like asthma. Left body weakness, left hand and leg tingling, but not like a C5 injury.
She was not as cooperative to my wish for affirmation that this is nothing to worry about. She said, “Dawn no, get to the hospital now. Do not drive yourself. Is it Sutter Health Tracy you are going to? I am calling ahead.” TO my good fortune, Sutter, KNOWS stroke and neurological crisis as an expertise!
When I arrived they had a “CODE- Stroke Alert” on the loud speaker, I am used to not paying attention to these and when the team descended on me I realized they were talking about me!!
- My blood pressure was normal, so why was I having monster migraines?
- I have no symptoms of fever, flu, or cold, I have a bad headache and nosebleeds, and now they want to test me for COVID,
- The doctor in triage checked me over, he said it was not a crisis, because I had the headaches too long, whew now THATS whatI wanted to hear
- I definitely was Diabetic, and more than that, 288 was entirely too high for my blood sugar (OK high, but whats that mean)?
At this time last week, awaiting my hospital room at the Sutter Health Tracy Hospital. I was terrified when my Recovery Team told me seems as if I had a small stroke, but the news would get more extreme by sunrise.
- It seems as if I had a small stroke, however there appears to be no remarkable damage to the brain (and that was the good news)
- As the HazMat Nurse came in to take blood, and prepared to give me 3 shots in the tummy she explained a bit about diabetes
- Then as she organized her things she said, “Ms Dawn”. I am afraid we have some bad news. You are positive for Coronavirus.
My foggy brain from not sleeping at night thought Positive? Coronavirus? Why is that bad… Then came shock, fear, and worry.
I have a job interview at 1:00 today. How can I get it together? I was not really prepared for this diagnosis, because I was focused on what I needed to do to fix the FAMILY crisis. Find a job, and secure healthcare. Reality came in waves, and I had to succumb to a different reality. I was sick. Really Sick. And that interview wasnt going to happen today. I cant be ok in blue hospital garb on an IV, a ventilator, and a heart monitor with alarms beeping.
It was that experience that inspired the telling of the story, and the things you can do to have a less distressing Covid disaster.
Planning and Safety for how to Care and Manage the risk of a Positive Coronavirus Diagnosis
In addition to basic Covid-19 Awareness and Safety. create a proactive plan for thinking ahead of what would happen if you or someone in your residence contracted Coronavirus, Preparation can create the optimal plan of care for your needs should you or someone in your home, contract coronavirus.
- Do you have an Advanced Directive (Living Will) for your Medical Care? (Create free at AARP, CA Courts.gov, LegalContracts.com, Or ask your lawyer, or LegalShield)
- What do you want to have happen as a result of your care? (Emergency Notification List, Work, ChildCare, Elder Care Business, Services)
- What Services do you need? (Emergency Childcare, Elder Care, Assisted Mobility (Wheelchair, Walker, etc)
- What health care team members should give these services ? (Gather info for Primary Doctor, Family Doctor, Hospital, Specialty Doctor, Therapy, Pharmaceutical)
- How often will you need the services ?
- List the suppliers you need to contact for the pharmaceutical, medical supplies or equipment you need? (ready list of medicine, dose and frequency if not in CareZone or your local doctors MyHealth Portal..
Prepare an Emergency Readiness Kit
If you were to require hospitalization, what would you need to organize to make the transition as smooth as possible. If you have a family, think back to when your child was born, how you had to pack a “go bag” of things you wanted to have with you during your child birth. While Coronavirus is not nearly as rewarding at the end, this level of planning will keep you and your family comfortable. I am sharing my experience, so others need not suffer.
- If Single, prepare a backpack or clean reuseable shopping bag with the things you can either keep in your car trunk or grab and go in an emergency.
- Healthcare needs (Kleenex, hand sanitizer, etc)
- Beauty and personal needs (brush, comb, toothbrush, toothpaste, deodorant, dry shampoo)
- Emergency change of clothing (several pairs of underwear, a pair of comfortable pants, shirt, if kids diapers )
- “Emergency snack” resources that are shelf stable and bottled water or gatorade. IF young kids, include bottles with dry formula and bottled water)
- Work and Home Management Resources: Cell phone, laptop or ipad
- Looks Like its going to be a while, make the most of it, resources (books, music, meditation, games, crossword puzzles, if kids toys)
Health Tools and Resources that Empower your Decision Making Process
- Get SMART Devices for routine medical care for live ready tracking by mobile or online cloud reference (Blood Pressure, Blood Glucose, Oximeter, FitBit, Diet, CPAP, etc)
- Check your local Pharmacy Suppliers for who ships, delivers or offers Safe Car Pickups and if your prescription is covered, in the event of quarantine. ( CareZone is great for managed health and prescription shipping. Some prescriptions are available for delivery at CVS Pharmacy. Walmart offers no contact services, check local store for options.