Still not sure where this is going next folks but I’m completely isolated for the foreseeable. Send good vibes and stay the fuck inside x
Still not sure where this is going next folks but I’m completely isolated for the foreseeable. Send good vibes and stay the fuck inside x
I’ve only been displaying symptoms since Monday really, I’m still feeling worse - really very tired and weak, muscle aches are starting. Internal thermostat is still bouncing over the place. My breathing is ok, but I can’t take as deep a breath as I could before. Morale is ok!
Day 5 of symptoms, cough & fever gone, I am just still extremely tired and my body feels as weak as having run a 10k. Still easily winded, out of breath just going to fill out up my glass. Have been horizontal since Monday. Holding up ok. So far felt like the worst flu I’ve had
Day 6 and feeling a bit better, less weak, less out of breath, think I’m on the mend
Day 8 - I had a few issues with a tight chest and shortness of breath over the weekend, laboured breathing just sat in my armchair, but the care I got from NHS 111 on the phone was excellent and they are doing a fantastic job. Feel better today, back to a few days ago
Day 11 - a small victory in that today is the first day I’ve been well enough to catch up on the dishes but yeah, I can’t tell you how happy this has made me
Day 15 - in not so great news, I have had a persistent shortness of breath that won’t shift since 10pm last night. I was feeling great on Saturday but a 111 GP advised to just rest and recover. It’s very frustrating, but very easy tonight to be grateful it’s still relatively mild
Day 19 - my breathing has improved, still feel tired and weak all the time, the cough has come back. I’ve set my expectations way back it might take me another week or two to recover. Glad I did dishes when I did!! Can’t do them now!
Day 22: still extremely weak and tired and so achey I make ungodly noises whenever I try to move, been told this is likely the post viral stage of recovery which is good. Mentally been difficult but @georgie_rharris got me a falafel wrap delivered to me that was so good I cried
And in a first I managed to watch an entire movie in only three sittings my stamina has been so poor. Getting there though, just focusing on keeping myself rested and hydrated
Day 26 - I’ve spoken to a doctor who thinks I have post viral fatigue, just weak and tired and fatigued a lot. Resting all the time, recovery is slow, this has been mentally the most difficult part. Slow improvements though, less achey that last time I tweeted.
Day 29 - into my 5th week, feeling a bit perkier, muscles still very physically weak and I’ve noticed how much they have shrunk everywhere. Realising it will take me months to recover fully but more upbeat than last week! He’s me enjoying the sun sitting at my windae
And if anyone was wondering what happens when I’m living alone while in quarantine & sick for 4 weeks it is: start wearing kilt socks and crocs as the perfect complement of comfort, warmth and grip
Day 37 - in the last week I’ve moved in with my parents once I was as sure as I could that I wasn’t infectious. I was struggling to look after myself. Some signs of progress - from struggling to make it up the stairs first day here to now it only being a bit uncomfortable is good
I can’t look at this directly in the face or it gets overwhelming. I just try to live minute by minute and measure my progress in weeks. Having a garden, company and a dog helps. Thank you everyone for your support.
Day 45 - some tentative improvements from last week, I am stronger and generally less tense. Did have a ten minute walk on Tues which led to a day of shortness of breath & tight chest but it’s all progress. Lucky to have the sun. Torturing my parents with my horrid beard.
Day 52 - it’s been a bit rough, my mood has taken a dip & it’s been tough. This is the first time I’m saying this publicly but I have bipolar disorder & I’m in a depressive phase. It’s all compounded like this & I can’t do my usual coping mechanisms of exercise & cooking. BUT
Tentative signs of progress, some tiredness has lifted and some muscle strength returned. There have been so many false summits so I’m just taking this cautiously. Glad I am with my family. And I attempted to tackle the beard and hit 17th C Golden Age Dutch painter .
8 weeks since symptoms first started - today was a big step. I made my first meal from scratch in the last two months. A scrabbly pesto w/ spaghetti that was so, so delicious. Just pesto done in a food processor + cooking pasta but I’m very proud of myself. Full body proud pic!
Week 9 - still slowly making progress, I started on new medication to see if it will help my shortness of breath and tightness of chest. Drove my car for the first time in 2 months just slowly around my hometown to test the water, and despite the jelly legs after, went well
I picked up and moved an aluminium chair about, 15-20 metres across the garden? And i was so out of breath it took me ten minutes to catch it again. I am improving!! But I am, to borrow a phrase from my Aussie dad, still crook
Week 11. I wrote at length about my experiences here in @LabourHame, the story so far pretty much from soup to nuts & some reflection on where I've been lucky that I didn't fall through the safety net https://labourhame.com/my-covid-reality/
I also spoke to the @SocReview podcast, from 51:20 in, if you prefer a audio medium! https://www.thesocialreview.co.uk/2020/05/28/the-social-review-podcast-episode-47-posh-boys-with-robert-verkaik/
The Social Review Podcast Episode 47: Posh Boys with Robert Verkaik
Jasper sits down with Robert Verkaik, journalist and author of 'Posh Boys: How the English Public Schools Ruin Britain,' discussing the history of private education, how it could be dissolved and...https://www.thesocialreview.co.uk/2020/05/28/the-social-review-podcast-episode-47-posh-boys-with-robert-verkaik/
My last few days have been not so good, progress is frustratingly non-linear (and seemingly non-Euclidean...); fatigue, muscle weakness & breathing issues at rest have all returned. I am, however, through the worst of my previous depressive phase and have a more positive mindset
I spoke to BBC radio Scotland yesterday about my experiences and my very long recovery time, would appreciate if folk listened in from 1:23:40 to hear what like! https://www.bbc.co.uk/sounds/play/m000jx0r
Week 13: the fatigue, muscle weakness and joint pain (in my knees esp) have gotten worse this last week and I’ve been kept from sleeping with slight shortness of breath. Frustrating, but I’m just locked into a rollercoaster - trying to enjoy the ride and smile for the photo
I’ve pulled my activity back a bit and trying to be consistent. Still hopeful & keeping my head up. I’m Sorry if you’ve sent me a message and I haven’t responded - I have dozens and dozens to get to and I want each response to be genuine and heartfelt, which takes energy and time
I’m also starting to think about when lockdown starts to lift, and people go back to “normal” and socialisation becomes more irl and less online, the folk in long term recoveries will feel even more left out. I’ve sat out of Zoom calls, let alone going to the pub.
I spoke to BBC world service about my experiences and also shared with Melanie Montano, whose experiences chime with mine: can listen here https://twitter.com/bbcworldservice/status/1274668412019621888?s=21 https://twitter.com/bbcworldservice/status/1274668412019621888
And the BBC wrote up the Drivetime interview; which was the 5th most read item on BBC News last Tuesday morning, has been translated into Spanish & Portuguese and shared across the world. This really strikes a chord with folk, it’s very humbling https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-north-east-orkney-shetland-53056785
It feels like some symptoms are developing or even returning: some GI issues, my heart was racing at nearly 100bpm just lying down last night, my muscles are weak again, fatigue has been slightly better last two days but it just feels like my body is a random number generator now
Last tweet for today, I promise. I’m 3 months on from showing symptoms. I can’t live my life. I’m still being cared for by my folks. I am keeping my head up and staying busy but it’s hard. Please take precautions and please stay safe.
In case you missed it, here is myself and other excellent contributors speaking to Good Morning Britain a bit about the long term Covid experience:
(The thing about this thumbnail, if I can be silly for a moment, is it reveals my greatest secret - my eyebrows at rest sit at the exact same angle on both sides)
Day 100! Symptom run down: I am weak in the legs (have been for about 2 weeks) esp knees. No aches or pains, +ve. Little bit energetic today, but do have been tired. Would normally be tempted to jump up and do things but maintaining my rest & exertion schedule the best I can
Maybe this is the start of a good spell and then a relapse, maybe it’s something to hope for, who knows. I’ve been on this rollercoaster long enough just to accept it Just trying to take it as easy as possible!
Spoke to Good Morning Scotland this morning, can hear the section about what the day to day has been like at 1:36:00 https://www.bbc.co.uk/sounds/play/m000kgbc
This is my most extensive interview yet, with local radio who used clips from this in the bulletins but also kindly uploaded the whole video to give the full interview context https://twitter.com/originalfm/status/1278705846667665408?s=21 https://twitter.com/originalfm/status/1278705846667665408
And this made the front made of the UK’s preeminent regional newspaper, good to see some movement from ScotGov on this but U.K. Govt needs to say more about this https://twitter.com/callumjodwyer/status/1278384066442788864?s=21
It’s now over 15 weeks since first symptoms. The positives: my shortness of breath has not happened at all in about 4-5 weeks, not even a little at night. Big relief! My aches have gone. My muscle weakness has improved after getting very bad last week.
The negatives: my heart rate occasionally spikes at 100-110 bpm at rest (usually 65-75). I’m getting a very acidic stomach & upset stomach symptoms. Bloods have come back all ok so I will call GP again to see if anything can be done.
The neutrals: fatigue is still about the same and I have to rest constantly. Getting occasional headaches at the back of my head which go away with paracetamol. Brain fog is gonna brain fog. I’m still basically incapacitated! But trying to focus on the positives, improved on SOB.
Just away to start the 17th week tomorrow. The stomach issues got significantly worse, but spoke to a GP & got some meds which have helped a lot. Still some upset stomach issues but doesn’t feel like burning agony any more
And I had a brief walk outside, and carried a deck chair and wasn’t out of breath at all - that would have wiped me out 8 weeks ago! Have to treat all good news with a pinch of salt - fatigue is still very real and I rest probably 3-6 hours in the day. Still though
Exactly 4 months on. Full run down: Stomach issues are back with a vengeance & I am speaking to my GP about this. I have had a busy (and unfortunately stressful) last few days and I’m knackered. Muscle weakness only occasional. Chest tight after walks and also oddly cold showers
I haven’t noticed heart rate up in a while. No shortness of breath at rest but breathing “weird” with chest tightness. I can manage about two hours sitting up or 30m standing before a rest. Brain fog intermittently bad and I have been slurring / mixing up words when tired
Mentally this is a difficult point. I’m frustrated. My mind is going a million miles a minute. I’m scared of all of the things you’d expect to be scared of debilitated for 4 months like this without dramatic improvements. But trying to keep resolve & keep faith in recovery
So I’ve had a bit of a breakthrough in the last week or two. I was getting shortness of breath + a tight chest from even short walks but my oxygen sat levels were always ok. I was recommended https://www.post-covid.org.uk where I found breathing exercises to help regulate breathing.
Now I do breathing regulation as I walk very slowly, but since I have been doing this I have not had any issues with a tight chest or breathing after doing walks that had me gasping like Thomas the Tank engine in May! Vid from then
I did this walk tonight (to my favourite postbox) while regulating my breathing and doing breathing exercises when I got in. All good. Oxygen levels great. My fatigue still is an issue but this feels like a major advance in my mobility and how far I can go!!
Hello, here we are, 20 weeks from first symptoms, had a bit of a wobble today and cried the most I have in months because this feels so, so long and it’s hard to maintain hope. Fatigue is still very strong, and I over extended myself yesterday. Felt very helpless.
I’m trying to stay hopeful and focused on what is in front of me but often it gets on top of me. I’m better tonight. Trying to focus on what has improved and what I can enjoy right now, so having a green tea and a biscuit and I will squeeze out every last morsel of joy.
Did a quick video overview of where I am at with everything. 5 months on from the initial Covid infection and I am recovering (I can walk now without any chest issues!!!), but it’s a slow and long road #longCovid
Managing breathlessness: https://www.blf.org.uk/support-for-you/breathlessness/how-to-manage-breathlessness#control
23 weeks on - some development! My fatigue has shifted from being this elastic band snapping me back, draining the soul from me; to this more diffuse, constant tiredness “pressure”, but it is more manageable with more sleep and I can do so much without hitting a limit!
I don’t know if this is a matter of time and recovery, if my recent exercise has helped, if it’s that I picked up a wee viral cough (negative Covid result) and it’s impacted my immune system; but anyway I am tentatively exploring what I can do without going over.
Week 26, the aforementioned viral cough (not covid) is currently playing the long game and kicking my arse - last week I had swollen glands and yesterday I slept 12+ hrs. Hoping when I recover I’ll be feeling much better, I’m definitely feeling this quite hard!
I have also been working part time, as many hours as I can manage, and since my first week back in mid-August I’ve gone from 1.6 hrs a day on average to 2.6hrs a day, which is just about a third of a working day, and definitely in the right direction!
6 months exactly. Half a year seems to have slid by, like watching a jelly flop down a shallow slide. I am continually surprised by the details of changing seasons. Wrote a bit more on the 6 month mark here: https://twitter.com/callumjodwyer/status/1308839407110230016?s=21
So since overdoing it on Friday and crashing a bit since Saturday, I have slept 12-14 hours a day and I finally feel a bit more human. My chest infection also isn’t going away (~ 6 weeks now?) which is making me worse I think? It’s not fun rn in any case! https://twitter.com/callumjodwyer/status/1309888389517279234?s=21
I’ve noticed the moment I get any sort of set back, mentally I start to reel. My sense of progress is so tied into my esteem with this, and I had been doing so well, that the moment I test the fence and it’s a hard limit I feel like I’ve failed. Focusing on big picture. Week 28.
Week 29 of #LongCovid - I am about 70% back from the crash last weekend, I am getting back to where I was and mentally in a much better spot. I was pushing myself with work, advocacy, and body recovery and the bricks stacked too high and fell on me. Ah well. Start again.
I have been resting aggressively and expect myself to be back to where I was before the crash in about a week or so. Only then will I very carefully restart my walks, hoping my limits sit roughly where they were, and focus on shorter / more frequent jaunts.
A head to toe rundown: My brain fog has been definitely better than say a month ago, my heart rate rides a little high but eases quickly, breathlessness not been an issue since July with breathing exercises, GI issues come and go, it’s predominantly fatigue and managing it left
I will be more careful with my pacing in future, I had a quick and substantial lifting of my fatigue ceiling and inevitably I wanted to see what I could manage, perhaps over-ambitiously. I know now! Here is my current favourite gif for reading up to this point
Week 30 // 7 months. The positives: I feel back to myself before the crash in terms of fatigue & tiredness. I am feeling less achey in my muscles from sitting up, combo of recovery and core exercises I’ve been doing.
The not so goods: my brain fog is terrible, I’m struggling to solve problems or string sentences together at times, I have an intermittent headache. My hands are SO shaky I severely buggered up a cup of (decaf) coffee more than once. /W30
My dad (of germy text fame) has been offshore for 6 weeks, recently asked if I was any better in that time and.... I don’t know? Perhaps a marginal amount, but the Covid recovery watchword is non-linear (and non-Euclidean...) progress /W30
Recently I had to help someone who was unwell (for non-virus reasons) and I am proud of myself for helping them as much as I have, they are recovering well and haven’t felt a set back as a result! So maybe I just have a little more resilience perhaps. Still pacing though. /W30
Just to illustrate this - in the last hour I struggled to read a paragraph aloud to my partner, it took me minutes read a clock face to tell the time, realised I had forgotten 2 glasses of water and then I put tried to put earphones on my headphones https://twitter.com/callumjodwyer/status/1319574859077328897?s=20
W31/ Siri play This Old House by Shakin’ Stevens
It’s funny how some of these symptoms are side effects of my bipolar meds (I’m on lithium carbonate and it’s fantastic for me), but things like the tremors, the constant thirst, the brain fog and memory loss are so much worse than the meds alone. Neurological for sure /W31
8 months since getting first unwell Covid! Here's my quick update (spoiler, things are moving in the right direction!)