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Published on February 2, 2021

COVID-19 takes toll, saps energy even after ‘recovery’

By Edward A. Forbes / The Bulletin

COVID-19 seems to dominate my life lately. Me, family members, friends and family members of friends all have fallen victim to the coronavirus.

Their experiences and tales of how some people are dealing with the positive tests make both interesting and disturbing news. I can only share mine.

When I have the energy, I will cook something that sounds appetizing. To date, the taste buds have defeated all my culinary efforts. Friends continue to send me food, some of which pass the taste bud trial. Jerry and Annabelle sent three types of soup; all were good. The stew not only tasted good but looked like the photos in my recipe book. I am impressed.

I cook but can only handle one item a day currently. Red beans with Andouille sausage on day one. I made cornbread using a new recipe on day two. I like to clean as I go, normally. The cornbread effort left my kitchen looking like the Pillsbury Doughboy was assassinated by a serial killer. The rest, and cleanup had to wait for the outcome of a nap. Rice is in the cooker as I nap.

Woo Hoo! Red beans and rice with cornbread, two days in the making, was now ready for consumption. I saved a serving for my son for his approval. He approved, and we both enjoyed our first meal of the combo! The next big step is filling the dishwasher and getting dishes clean. I will put them up tomorrow.

Where to take a nap? I don’t have to worry about selection. It occurs wherever I sit and occurs spontaneously. I, evidently, am only the vehicle required. Naps vary in duration from one to four hours. My favorite, so far, occurred as I was eating a very good beef stew, prepared and delivered by my friends, Jerry and Annabelle. I was eating early supper at 4 p.m. and fell asleep with my Teenage Ninja Mutant Turtle lap tray in my lap.

I woke after 6, looked at the window, and it was dark, and I thought I had slept all night in the recliner. I texted Jerry and Annabelle and accused them of putting sleeping potion in my stew. It took awhile for me to realize that it was 6 p.m., not a.m., and I had just a little panic then.

I still have good days and bad days. Some days my balance is less than good. If you see me staggering around the mailbox, it’s not because I’ve been hitting the wine; it’s just one of those days. I find on those days that driving must be limited. Depth perception is off, and judging when I can pull into the road becomes less than an exact science. Those days I try to stay home, and this is not as hard as it sounds since the fatigue is right there with the other remaining symptoms, so I can nap - usually whenever I sit.

Sitting at home with taste buds in an on-again, off-again rotation. I’m beginning to worry that I will regain the weight I lost in the hospital. Strange things taste good. I had tuna fish salad, sliced jalapenos, and crackers for supper, and for dessert, several Mother’s Iced Oatmeal cookies, a personal favorite. I have been smart enough to stay away from the Pepperidge Farm cookie section. I can hear them calling my name when I walk down the cookie aisle.

I am a lucky man. Yes, when the virus was at its worst, I was sick, but the duration of the worst symptoms was relatively short. The coughing, shortness of breath and blood oxygen less than 80 were all of relatively short duration from Dec. 10 until Jan. 10.

I still see many with prolonged hospital stays and worse.

I want everyone to stay safe and to keep their family and friends safe. From my recliner - love, and good health to all!

(Edward Forbes wants to hear from you. Email him at eforbes1946@gmail.com or send comments by snail mail to The Bulletin, PO Box 2426, Angleton TX. 77516.)