After avoiding us for the past 17 months, COVID finally and abruptly made an appearance. Having two weeks of my life turned upside down seems like something worthy of a blog post, but it’s been a struggle. What do I even write about? What am I trying to accomplish with this post? Part of me is simply trying to document what we went through. But I also am trying to look deeper. To analyze and understand what we have just walked through. Are walking through. To know the point of this trial. To recognize it’s meaning in my life.
I know everyone has a different experience with COVID. Even my husband and I have experienced it quite differently. But what has surprised me is how horrible it’s been. Not that I didn’t hear enough horror stories in the news to know it’s bad. But, it’s been much worse than what has been described. COVID humbled me – to the core. My irritability and short temper surfaced immediately. Sensitivity to noise skyrocketed even more than normal leaving me frustrated with my kids who were anything but sick as my husband and I battled COVID. My endurance of pain was nothing to boast about. Utter exhaustion overwhelmed me day after day after day. My faith took a hard blow. My unloving thoughts towards my fellow suffering spouse shocked me. My lack of perseverance was quickly revealed. My inability to read lasted for days. Inability to comprehend. Inability to be present. I was simply existing but feeling totally hopeless. COVID pressed down on my spirit significantly more than my body. Did anyone warn of this symptom?
Though I faithfully start each day in the Word, with COVID I didn’t crack my Bible for days. As the body was unable to consume nourishment, so the brain and spirit were unable to consume spiritual food. Once I finally had the mental strength to open the Word again, I could only stomach a brief truth that had been underlined in days past. No reading of complete verses or passages. Just a sentence was all I could process. God felt so far away. Did anyone warn of this symptom?
I constantly fill my mind with podcasts, sermons, audio books, and music. However, when COVID entered the house, consumption of such information was suddenly halted as well. No new thoughts could enter, and yet I found my mind playing a few select thoughts over and over. I couldn’t shake them. Expand them. Direct them. My brain felt on a continuous short loop, which was a bit maddening. Did anyone warn of this symptom?
Then there were the texts. Though I appreciated the texts, I longed for a personal secretary to let everyone know I was doing horrible. That my body was wracked with a virus that was affecting my very soul. That, no, I wasn’t doing better. Seven days had passed and I felt as weak as day one. And even more hopeless. I just want Heaven now. Christ to come now. This all to be done right now. To never wake up another morning in this cursed place. So, when another caring person asks me how I am doing, what am I to say? Did anyone warn of this symptom?
Then there were the days of improvement only to be followed by the worse days yet. Four days in I thought I had turned the corner. My energy soared and my brain could even watch a movie; I was sure the worst was over. The worst was yet to be. That night I tossed and turned. Got up. Laid down. Writhed in pain and found no solace till the sun rose. An intense, unrelenting pain had persisted all night long between my shoulder blades. With the morning light, it thankfully disappeared and I finally slept in peace all day. Night returned and with it the pain. I spent the whole night on the floor utilizing a heating pad and enduring the nocturnal back pain. Did anyone warn of this symptom?
Now I have truly turned the corner. The fact I can actually sit and write a blog post is encouraging. But I have been humbled these past two weeks. I have seen a side of me that repulses me. A side of me that is weak and pitiful and selfish. A side that greatly lacks love. I could keep it all to myself and never publish this, but that wouldn’t change the fact of what I saw in myself when COVID entered our home.
As my body lay weak for days, I glimpsed a much more deadly virus at work in me than COVID and it terrified me. We take supplements and prescriptions and wear masks and socially distance and get vaccinated and isolate all in an effort to defeat the invisible virus of COVID. Yet, what measures are we taking to fight the invisible virus infecting our very souls? Do we even realize we are infected? COVID may disrupt our lives for two weeks, but sin is wreaking havoc every day of our existence. COVID may go so far as to kill our bodies, but sin is destroying our eternal souls.
The bad news? I can assure you that each of us has a positive test result for this much more deadly virus (Romans 3:10-18).