….continued from Part 1 here
Then started the days of unending oxygen measurements, temperature checks, x-ray reports, popping pills, taking steam, kadha, turmeric milk and updating the ever worried family about vitals! It was not so much of a task as was being packed in one room was. Still, I thank my stars that I didn’t have to go away at some quarantine facility. Also, Mr. husband was around so at least I could have a look at him from a distance and talk to him with a mask on! Such days!
Some days the breathlessness and the weakness would make me cry and other days, it was like any other day, except in the confinement of a room! Although, the weakness was a constant companion, other things would come and go. I had accepted it decently and even laughed about it when I lost my sense of smell on the 4th day!
By far, the toughest part about this, wasn’t the virus itself, but the pain of staying away from family! The little one, for the first time in 4 years was away from me, and I did not know for how many days! He would always love spending days away, playing with his cousins, but as it started to night and close to sleep time, he always wanted to come back home! He even missed his house when we would be out on trips! But this time, when i was packing his bags and sending him away, I just told him once, “People here are not well, so you are going to Nanu’s place for a vacation. Mumma will not be there since she has to take care of Dadi, Dada and Papa here, will you please sleep without me for some days?” (I still hadn’t contracted it when we had sent him away) And my pride that he is, replied, “Don’t worry mumma, if Mama makes me sleep in his lap and tells me a story, I will sleep. But please bring me back home once the lockdown is over!” This, right here, was a single sentence which made me proud and still made me weep for the next fortnight!
Obviously, he was taken care of by rockstars; his nanu, nani, mama and by the best, mami! He had the company of his cousin the whole day, little Divit who would share all his toys, and heck! even his parents with his Yug bhai! Still, the level of maturity my little one had shown in such a young age surprised all my beliefs in him! My pride, always! Well, I even gave myself the credit of bringing him up well! My chest swells with honour when I think about my little boy, adjusting well, away from his house, his comfort zone! I would break down and weep each time I saw his picture or did a video call to him, but he stayed strong! To others, this may sound mundane and even an over-reaction , but to mothers, this may be understood well!
A pandemic can be only fought with the support of the family! People these days can barely take care of the ones that stay with. But God has blessed me with an abundant extended family! Nutritious home cooked meals would be delivered daily to the doorstep! Food for mother in law in the hospitals, her medicines and treatment was managed and coordinated by the sister in law and her God-send husband; who would not once think about compromising his immunity and was always a phone call away whenever the need arose. These trying times made me believe in the institution of an extended family in a whole new light! Being part of a huge family doesn’t only mean sharing a surname or occasional social gatherings; rather it means standing with one another in times of crisis!
And now, when I look back at all those days of sufferings and fighting the virus, all I can be is thankful that we are out of it unscathed. It is more of a mental pressure to contract it rather than a physical one. I have promised myself to let loose a little, take precautions but at the same time not take this thing to the head and try to move on with it as the part of our new life. I now go for walks, drives and even take the little one to play downstairs. Obviously with a mask on and to a place which is not crowded with people. We did not do this before. We were super cautious and scared. May be, the negativity we attached to this thing attracted it to us in the first place. We avoided people, even the ones who were close to us, but they were the ones who helped us during this phase! The virus will come and go, but the relationships are here, to stay, forever. Let us try and not spoil those and our mental health as well.