Meg T on 21 July 2021

Today my Covid reality is that whilst in the midst of a heatwave, it is Day three of isolation for me and my 16 year old son. He has developed Covid 19 - his symptoms of a tickly cough started on Saturday afternoon. We did a lateral flow test which was negative after 30 mins. Saturday evening his symptoms worsened. But the following morning there was the faintest of lines on the test strip, so we retested - boom! Immediate positive result after about a minute. Time to self isolate. But before we did, we went to the local walk in test centre to have a PCR test done. No problem in getting an appointment at all. Thankful that I had a car to get us there, so we did not risk infecting others. And we contacted everyone we were in contact with in the preceding days. I did a PCR too and I was negative. I feel fine. Thankfully I've had both doses of the Oxford Astra-Zeneca vaccine - I completed my course in May. And today's lateral flow test is still negative. My son though, is really struggling; he feels really rough - headache, temperatures up to 39 degrees C. Joint aches and pains, feeling chesty but can't cough anything up, throat & lungs feeling on fire. The speed at which it took hold surprised me. And he is frightened. Very frightened, because he has a friend in his young 20s who was hospitalised - thankfully now recovered. And the fact that I'm having to ration hugs so I don't potentially become infected is causing him a lot of distress. To cap it all he's lost his sense of taste today. He describes the food he's been eating tasting like "boiled leather." He's also very angry. Very angry. We have been shielding since the end of March 2020 and until now have not succumbed to Covid, so he and I are gutted as we've been so careful. He's also upset that at 16 years of age, he didn't have an opportunity to be vaccinated as being my young carer, he's worried about me not managing in case he gets sick. But what has angered him the most is that the great #Freedom Day started on Monday - all Covid19 restrictions have been eased in England. Even some nightclubs opened at 1 minute past midnight so folks could go party. Yet the Delta variant infection rates are still rising & the anti-maskers & anti-vaxxers & Covid deniers (as he perceives it) are all celebrating whilst hospital admissions are rising again and people are still becoming sick and in some cases dying. Covid is not a hoax, nor is it a joke. He wishes folk would take it seriously, including the Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, whom despite being "pinged" by the NHS Covid-19 app because he had been in contact with Sajid Javed - the new Secretary of State for Health, still travelled to Chequers, the incumbent PM's country estate even though he was supposed to be isolating at 10 Downing Street. The one rule (or is it no rules?) for them & one rule for us, the ordinary folk is really, really starting to grate now.

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