If only I had known. . .
Fri Apr 30 2021
I had the weekend off from work and we went grocery shopping. That was Saturday. The next day, Sunday, my grandmother began to develop this cough. My mom and I urged her to get tested. Two days later, she did. We had been getting tested regularly since the start of the pandemic. The next day, Wednesday, she was still feeling icky so she asked me to check her test results online. It said negative but I may have checked the wrong date (I guess we'll never know). She went to the clinic and they said she had a viral infection but not the virus. She was given a puffer and sent home. By this time, I was also developing symptoms. That same afternoon, I went to the same clinic and got the same diagnosis and the same treatment. Just as I walked in the door, she called to me from her room and I could hear the public health nurse on speaker. She told me she tested positive and that was when I realised that it was possible I was positive too. We booked tests as soon as my mother got home and went the next day; my mother, my sister, my grandfather, and I.
Fast forward to the next Saturday, October 10. Our tests had not come back but I began to have trouble breathing. My grandfather had been sleeping and not eating for four days straight. I told my mom and she called the ambulance for both of us. The ambulance came and he and I were wheeled off the hospital. There we got rapid tests and were told we were both positive. I spent 6 hours in the ER before I was discharged. He, on the other hand, was admitted.
Little did I know, that was the last time I would ever see him. He stayed in the ICU for three weeks. It was a constant game of turning him over to open his airways or attempting dialysis so his organs wouldn't fail. Nothing worked. At 12:20 am on the morning of November 1, the hospital called and said he had declined rapidly and it was a lost cause to continue keeping him on life support. By that time, we had all recovered and even got our clearance letters. I was the last person in our family to see him alive and that eats me up every day.
The last thing I said to him was "I'm going home. I'll see you soon."