Amanda Cade

Worth It! (Things to try, read, watch, hear, and discuss)

So that none of you worry unnecessarily, I’m going to start by skipping to the end: the COVID-19 test I took the other day was negative. Thank God. Now let’s go back to the beginning.

Before

syringe and pills on blue background

Photo by Miguel Á. Padriñán on Pexels.com

Like many people, I’ve been watching with dismay and alarm as COVID-19 cases here in the United States have been climbing again. I’ve been very concerned about the reports of testing shortages and hospitals reaching capacity, and have been grateful that, at least for now, my home state of Missouri hasn’t reached the terrifying levels of other areas. I was also glad that I have been, and continue to be, extremely careful. Even though we’re “open for business”, I haven’t been comfortable with increasing my risk of exposure, and have still been staying home except to occasionally see my family, a few friends, and a handful of people that have been here to deal with some home repairs that I couldn’t put off any longer.

The Call

Given my precautions, I was in no way prepared to learn that I had been exposed. To protect the privacy of others, I’m not going to get into the specifics of how that happened. I will say that it did not come from my family. At any rate, when I learned this week that I was at risk, I was blown away.

My first response was a little bit of yo-yoing between calm and total freakout. On the one hand, we wore masks and practiced social distancing, and I felt completely fine. On the other hand, I had been exposed to the coronavirus. What’s more, since that happened, I had seen my parents, my sister Audrey, and two of my nieces. After months of the entire family being exceptionally cautious, there was a chance that I had inadvertently made all of those efforts meaningless.

So I did what I usually do when I’m stressed, and called my mom. As usual, she was supportive, logical, and collected. She calmed me down, assured me that no one in the family would be angry at me, and volunteered to call Audrey and give her an update. After that, I was centered enough to deal with the immediate issue: getting tested.

Setting up the test

blue and silver stetoscope

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

I knew that they were doing testing at an urgent care just up the road, so I called them and asked how to set up an appointment. They told me to just come in and get on the list, and that I could expect a wait of one to two hours. When I arrived, they took my name and cell phone number and told me to wait in my car until they called. I also quickly received a text message with a link that allowed me to see, in real time, my place in line and how quickly the line was moving.

It was a hot day, and so I ran the air conditioner and drank a lot of water while I tried to concentrate on my book and answered a few work related emails. I couldn’t help contrasting my minor discomfort to the situation in other states, where people were spending the night in their cars while they waited for testing sites to open, waiting six hours in lines that stretched for miles, and sometimes being turned away when tests run out. Many of these people, unlike me, are symptomatic.

The Test

After about an hour, my phone rang and I was told to come inside. The rest of the process would occur in a clean, air-conditioned building with medical personnel who had time to answer my questions and were even relaxed enough to joke with me a little. It ended up being about another hour before I was actually swabbed, as there were periods of waiting between each step (paperwork, waiting for a room, more paperwork, vital signs, and then the actual test). Again, I was struck by how easy it was compared to what I’d be facing if I lived somewhere else. What’s more, I was lucky enough to be able to get a rapid test. The nurse practitioner explained to me that the availability of these tests vary day by day and location by location, but fortune smiled on me and I could have one, even though-and I can’t stress this enough-I had no actual symptoms. While I was grateful, it broke my heart to think that in other states, people who were sick and desperate were waiting days to find out their test results.

The test itself was, as has been reported, uncomfortable, but it was over quickly. 

The Results

cotton buds on white surface

Photo by Karolina Grabowska on Pexels.com

After the swab, I was told that I’d have results in ten to twenty minutes. That short wait seemed to go on forever, and I couldn’t begin to wrap my head around the idea of waiting for days. If that had been the case, would my parents have gotten tested? Audrey, her husband, and my nieces? I pictured my entire family anxiously awaiting results, and also kept thinking (even though I tried not to) how I would manage if I tested positive and got sick. 

I reassured myself with the fact that medical care is still easily available here in St. Louis, and, once again, thought about the contrast between my situation and what’s going on in hard-hit areas.

I can’t begin to describe my relief when I received my negative results. After that, there was a little bit of paperwork and I was on my way. Altogether, it took just about three hours, including drive time, for me to walk back into my house with total peace of mind.

Final Thoughts

Except that I really don’t have total peace of mind. The alarm I was already feeling about the overall situation in this country was brought into sharper focus by this experience. So even though I generally keep this blog away from anything specifically political, there are some things I feel like I have to say:

  1. I still can’t quite wrap my head around the fact that the pandemic, and public health, has become political in the first place.
  2. The testing, tracing, and supply chain issues in this country need to be addressed. I haven’t talked about this on the blog before (because again, I prefer to avoid politics here), but I frequently contact government representatives, on the local, state, and national level, when I have concerns. I have been doing this even more often during the pandemic, and encouraging others to do so as well. If you agree that something needs to change, please reach out to the people in power and share your concerns.
  3. On a related note, I’d like to encourage you to reach out to your elected officials and share your concerns about anything, whether you’re in the United States or elsewhere, whether you agree with me or not, and whether it’s about the pandemic or any other issue.
  4. Please wear a mask. Please social distance. Please protect yourself and others. Please make small sacrifices in the interest of public health.

need to talk 2

Those are my thoughts. Please share yours in the comments. Stay safe.

32 thoughts on “Reflections on my (negative) COVID-19 Test

  1. Stay safe and healthy Amanda!!!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Amanda Cade says:

      That’s definitely my focus. You do the same.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. kagould17 says:

    Whewww. Glad all went well Amanda. Also glad that you live in a state that gets it. So many others have chosen to make this a political or rights issue. Even in Canada, people are getting belligerent when asked to wear a mask in public places. None of them seem to comprehend that the typical mask is not for their protection, but for the protection of others. We all need to be more selfless, if we are going to beat this thing down. Trust the science, not the politicians. Stay well Amanda

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Amanda Cade says:

      To be honest, I’m not sure that my state gets it so much as that we’ve been lucky so far. Our seven day average is almost three times what it was a month ago, so I think the real test of our preparedness is ahead of us.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. msnyder1970 says:

    I’m grateful the Northeast Part of Pennsylvania where I live has been on the down turn. Also nice to read results come quicker, but if you show symptoms like I did the wait for my test wasn’t nearly as long as yours. Glad you tested negative. it was a horrific 50th birthday for me to get the positive results call back in April.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Amanda Cade says:

      I hope things stay on the right track in your area, and that you’re doing well.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. msnyder1970 says:

        Yes, I’ve been well. My ordeal lasted no more than 2 weeks of misery. Thankfully I wasn’t at the need to be hospitalized either.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Good that your results turned negative, Stay Safe and Healthy Amanda. Take Care.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Amanda Cade says:

      You, too. I hope you’re doing well.

      Like

      1. We are doing well, inside our home from Last four months. Thank you Amanda.

        Liked by 3 people

  5. Congratulations for your negative result about COVID19 Test. Do not forget avoid touching notes or coins (wear a pair of plastic gloves), wash up products you buy on supermarkets (fruits, vegetables, even packed) when you arrive home, and wash up your hands. Avoid touching eyes and any part of body before clean the hands…
    Maybe looks like paranoic, but even my mother and many friends do it, because we yet do not how and where the virus can live on the things.
    Only a bit of common sense until the number of cases get down,
    In my family, we avoid huggs, kises, etc. My mum is 85, and my dad 89.
    Sometimes, even looking paranoic, but we have to survive, is the first thing. Survive and avoid bring the virus to other people arround.

    Is good what you are doing, writing to get relaxed is a good therapy.

    Best regards from Madrid, Spain.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Amanda Cade says:

      I’d rather take too many precautions than too few. I’m glad you’re concerned about protecting your parents. I feel the same way about mine.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. fakeflamenco says:

    We have testing in a large parking lot near our arena. People wait in their cars and the testers come to the car and swab you through the open window. I haven’t gone to be tested yet…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Amanda Cade says:

      What are the wait times like in your area?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. fakeflamenco says:

        Sounds like it can be several hours.

        Liked by 1 person

  7. Nilesh Kumar says:

    Stay safe ! Gald all went well

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Amanda Cade says:

      Thank you. I hope you’re doing well. 🙂

      Like

  8. I can imagine your anxiety about the test and I’m glad it came out negative. But it’s true – that’s not the end of the story.

    I’m in the UK, where there has also been a high number of cases. I won’t get political either, but I definitely think there are things that could have been done better and differently. I really don’t understand why some people are not willing to do the small things that would help contribute to keeping us all safer.

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Stay safe. Here the mask measure is a mess. Need it for transport and shops. But not cake shops, or schools or offices or lifts.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Amanda Cade says:

      Thank you. It was a scary day, and I was very lucky.

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Thank goodness it all worked out well in the end –and such a fast result! I’ve been avoiding the political on my blog, but although it’s not as crazy here in the UK as in the US, we have had a high death toll and as a diabetic weith asthma, I’m scared.

    However it seems that the vast majortiy of people in England think the danger is over judging by the way they are behaving….. 😦

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Amanda Cade says:

      I really can’t understand how so many people are behaving like there’s no cause for concern. The anti-mask movement, in particular, baffles and frightens me.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yes, how hard is it to wear a mask? Perhaps all the linking of masked muslim women with terrorism has put a fear of masks into their poor little confused heads……

        Liked by 1 person

  11. Delighted you’re well. Stay safe!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Amanda Cade says:

      Thank you. Things have gotten must more serious around here since I wrote this post, so I’m being even more vigilant. Definitely worried about my state and my community.

      Like

  12. Lara/Trace says:

    I agree completely Amanda. So glad you are OK and negative. Stay that way! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Amanda Cade says:

      I plan to, especially as cases are rising around here. Scary times.

      Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: