26.3.20

Two Weeks In: Testing Oli for Covid-19, Quarantine, and the Goodness of God

What a week we've had! For the world, of course, it's been a week. But in our little nest, too.

On Saturday March 21, Oli developed a little dry cough. It was intermittent and didn't wake him at night, so we didn't think much of it. By afternoon the following day, his cough was constant and a fever developed. I called our province's COVID-19 line (18776444545  in case you need it!) and were advised to have him tested for Covid-19. 

A test was scheduled for later in the week and in the meantime Oli would need to be quarantined in our home to protect the rest of our family. Of course, we'd already been exposed to his virus, if it was Covid-19, as we've learned someone may be contagious for days before they present symptoms, but contagion increases once symptoms present, so he was more contagious now that he was sick. So, to protect ourselves and our girls (especially Chloe who had suffered pneumonia just last month), we made the impossible choice to section him off in our bedroom until further notice. The rest of us would be under strict quarantine, not leaving the house until test results came through.

We delivered his meals wearing masks, we passed him notes under the door, we wore gloves to take his temperature, we washed the door knob and our hands dozens of times a day, and we desperately missed our boy. Meanwhile, Oli was sick and suffering all alone. It was the most counter-intuitive thing, keeping such distance from our boy when he needed us the most. Absolutely heartbreaking leaving him alone when all I wanted to do was hug him, stroke his hair, rub his back.

The next day (Monday), we learned of a walk-in testing clinic that had just opened downtown with absolutely enormous capacity. Run by 300 nurses, the clinic could test up to 3,000 people a day and they would test anyone presenting symptoms or who had travelled. I drove down with Oli and we were seen and tested all within thirty minutes. Quick, clean, efficient, and free. I know other provinces in Canada are only testing people who have travelled internationally and there's a severe shortage of tests in the USA and other countries, so we felt incredibly lucky. We were promised results in 24-72 hours, and headed back to our quarantined home hopeful.

Oli was often up in the night with coughing fits this week, and since Brad was sleeping on the couch, he was closest to him and spent some truly special moments with him in the wee hours. Donning his mask, Brad would go in to offer Oli some Tylenol, honey for his throat, and prayer and at one point Oli even said to Brad that he felt so close to God as he was suffering. He said he'd never prayed so much in his entire life! Being all alone had driven him to God. As a parent, I felt I was doing the very worst thing, even as I understood it best for the rest of the family, and yet even in that, God was doing a good work in Oli's heart. God was teaching Oli of his comfort, his presence, and his friendship when we couldn't give ours.

On Wednesday morning we still had no results, but thankfully a friend who works in healthcare was able to look up Oli's information and read his test results for us - negative. Negative! Our sick boy does not have Covid-19, but even if he did, God is good. 

Oli is still sick, but no longer in strict isolation. Brad and I can move back into our bedroom (hallelujah!) and the girls have their brother back. We've just been on the phone with Oli's pediatrician and a prescription for antibiotics has been sent to our pharmacy to treat probable bronchitis.  Our strict quarantine is over, and if needed, Brad or I can go to the store to get supplies or go on a run for fresh air. Glorious! What freedoms we'd taken for granted just a week ago!

We will still be intensely social-distancing, now more than ever, after this scare, but we aren't prisoners in our own home. We won't be seeing any other people except a meter apart, and only if necessary. We won't be allowing the kids outside except in a nature-context like hiking in Bois de Liesse (more on that soon!) and we'll continue catching up with friends and family on Whatsapp and Zoom. The pandemic is just ramping up in most parts of the world and it's far from over here in Canada, but this personal crisis is thankfully over.

Thank you everyone for your concern, prayers, thoughts, and porch deliveries this past week! Let's continue to take care of one another. 

1 comment:

  1. Glad he’s ok! Nothing is as scary as a very sick kid!

    ReplyDelete