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Letter: Illness affects everyone around you


Reporter Nick Hedrick recently featured me in an article on what it’s like to deal with the effects of COVID. It was not easy to recall certain parts of that experience but my hope was, and still is, that at least one person reading the article might be motivated enough to go and get vaccinated. As I found out, being vaccinated is not a 100% guarantee but without it, the odds are definitely against you. I received my booster last week. If not for yourself, do it for those who care about you. They are the ones who will have to live with your decision.

The article focused on my experience from a personal point of view and like all stories, there is a backside. Let’s call it “the rest of the story”. While the article was about me, this experience was far from mine alone. From the time I first showed the telltale signs of COVID, family support, in addition to all of the medical treatment, played a large part in my recovery. My wife, Gloria, daughter Chris, son David and my grandson Royce, who happened to be visiting from Arizona, became my care team. They were the ones who made sure I able to get to my doctor appointments, both before and after. They were the ones who took turns visiting me in the hospital every day. They were the ones who continually nagged me about eating and hydrating. They also had the important job of bringing me ice cream. Since returning home, they are my source of transportation and the ones who drive to Lafayette to switch out my portable oxygen tanks. They are the ones who take care of the many basic chores around the house and yard that are currently beyond my ability. My life would be very difficult without their care. A special thanks to each of them.

I point all of this out because, as I’ve said, you can’t make this all about you. COVID, like any illness, affects everyone around you. Don’t think for a minute that it can’t happen to you. Don’t count on just getting a “mild” case. Be smart and do your part to protect yourself, those around you and the rest of us.

S. David Long



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