An Endemic not a Pandemic

In the silence of the night, I hear my Dad coughing in the next room and I think I couldn’t agree more with Spain considering COVID-19 as an endemic rather than a pandemic.

Being Infected for the Second Time

On 6th Jan 2022, my father came back home early from the office saying he felt tired; fatigued. The alarms in my head started ringing. We’d been hearing that people are being infected for the second time but we were still questioning the authenticity of it.

After a while, he came downstairs in search of a heater and that could only mean he was feeling colder than usual while the temperature inside the house was quite warm.

I knew something wasn’t right.

He stayed in his room the entire day, watching t.v, pacing from the room to his dressing room, and by the time it was night time his voice sounded like he had a congested nose.

My Mom checked his temperature; 99.2 the thermometer showed and my Mom picked her phone and keys and said I’m sleeping downstairs in the guest room today.

He did not go to the office the next day and chose to stay home. I asked him how he was feeling and he said ‘I’m fine’ but I knew he wasn’t.

His flu seemed to have increased with an added cough and loud sneezes.

The rest of the members of the house had silently understood COVID had entered our house once again.

At night, my father suddenly came downstairs saying he’s going to get tested and no one disagreed. He sent a screenshot of his test results on the Family Whatsapp Group and suddenly the word ‘POSITIVE’ began echoing all around.

I downloaded the image just to be sure.

While the mystery of illness was solved the questions that arose were

  1. From where/whom did he get infected?
  2. Should my mother be tested or not?

For a man in isolation with only his thoughts to accompany him, my father began to analyse the past few days trying to reach the exact point in time where he believed he could have been infected. He developed a theory that determined him to have been infected by my mother!

Theory

On the 3rd of Jan, my parents had traveled to Lahore for a friend’s daughter’s engagement and reaching upon their destination, a 1.5 hour flight away, my mother fell into a long slumber that had left my Dad bored for 3 hours.

The next day my mother complained of feeling extreme fatigue and body ache that both of them deduced to be due to the endless weddings they had been attending in the past two weeks. She also had a cough but that had been persistent for the past two months since she got a retina detachment surgery.

Their lack of physical strength and exhaustion of attending wedding events led them to cut their trip short by one day and return home.

My father argued that this was not just plain exhaustion as she claimed but rather the initial symptoms indicating that she had contracted COVID and that is how he had been infected by her.

This theory seemed questionable (and denied by my mother) but it was true, one or another my mother had been exposed to the virus and so she went ahead and got tested.

I was in the bathroom when my 10-year-old nephew came banging on the door saying ‘Anna, dadi tested positive!’

The house fell under another mystery. Whose going to be next?

Not a Pandemic but an Endemic

Endemic: A disease regularly found among particular people or in a certain area

Seeing my parents undergoing the effects of the virus for the second time, they had both contracted the virus exactly a year ago as well, displayed how the virus eventually be just another normal illness in the coming years.

Their present symptoms (2022- Post-vaccination with no booster shot)

  • Mild cough
  • Congestion
  • Mild fever
  • Mild fatigue for one-two days

Their Past Symptoms (2021- Pre-vaccination)

  • Loss of taste and smell
  • Extreme fatigue with body ache
  • Congestion
  • Hairfall

WHO has also announced that people infected with the virus now don’t need to quarantine for 15 days but rather only 5 days and after 5 days they can come out of isolation wearing a mask for the next 5 days.

As cases are increasing worldwide with new variants such as Omicron, Flurona and Deltacron simply adding to our vocabulary and increasing our worries, it is becoming evident that the cases are much milder than before. The biggest relief being the lack of an increasing death rate.

Last year, when my entire family became infected with COVID, except for me, I was terrified of catching the disease due to the extreme symptoms, I like enjoying the taste of my food tbh, but today it seems inevitable that one of these days I will catch this infamous virus and it's just a matter of time before I do.

Cases are on the rise, but the Government has opposed lockdown and closure of schools. The world celebrated Christmas, New Years and will soon celebrate the Fifa Worldcup. As humans, we are tired of being locked inside. We’ve had enough and we cannot deal with it anymore. The truth is we miss our normal life and we want it back.

It’s the year 2022 and we don’t want to spend another minute in fear of an unseeable grim reaper.

The future (as I believe) is that this virus will be the new flu, contagious but not deadly and the sooner we accept it the sooner we get back to our normal lives. But, till then wear your masks and stay safe!

Disclaimer — The above opinions are purely based out of observation and personal experience and may change with increasing scientific studies and data.

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Aamnah Mansoor

Aamnah Mansoor

I'm a 22 year old trying to make sense of this outlandish world.