Emma Samms: Stand by for my superpowers

Covid-19 virus protection tips

Covid-19 virus protection tips - Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

‘Once I am immune I’ll be able to volunteer for all sorts of helpful and useful things’

There’s only one story in the Cotswolds at the moment. In fact, it’s the story of the whole country and indeed the whole world, so it wouldn’t feel right to completely ignore the coronavirus epidemic, no matter how much I would like to. Whilst the idea of distracting you for a brief moment, even aspiring to bring a smile to your faces as you read a jolly story or two would be my initial instinct, I would also hate to appear dismissive or that I was trivialising the current situation in any way.

I put this conundrum to Mike Lowe, editor of this publication. Not known for handholding his writers, and with a reputation of being a touch “grumpy” he basically said, “Write about your own experience”, so, that is what I shall do.

Currently the UK has just begun its second week of lockdown and I am just beginning to recover from my own bout with COVID-19. I should say that, so far, I have not been tested, but every doctor and medic that I have seen or spoken to is adamant that I have the virus based on my, apparently, very classic symptoms.

Having never been an ‘Early Adopter’ before, I have the dubious honour of being able to report in with first-hand knowledge of the virus. Of course, one of the most unusual aspects of the COVID-19 virus is that no two people experience it exactly the same way, so there’s no point in me telling you what to expect if you catch it, because by the time you read this some of you will have experienced far worse.

I’m NOT going to give you a list of all my symptoms. Don’t worry! And the fact that I was not admitted to hospital meant that I had a relatively mild version of it. But I did have to go to the hospital at one point and a few days later an ambulance was sent to my house, so it wasn’t exactly a breeze. It’s been quite painful and at times very frightening but, obviously, I’ve got away with it extremely lightly and I’m one of the lucky ones.

What I’m actually really excited about is the significance of now being immune to the virus. Once there is a test available, my antibodies and I will be invited to volunteer for all sorts of helpful and useful things. With no worries about infecting or being infected, those of us in my situation can put our new superpowers to good use.

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It’s hard to believe that the world can have changed such a huge amount in such a short time. For the past couple of weeks, I haven’t focused much on the state of the world, since I’ve almost exclusively been focusing on catching my breath. But now even my own house is different.

Having had to immediately self-isolate at our home as soon as my symptoms appeared, my partner Simon appears to have filled his days (when he wasn’t looking after me) by ironing everything from socks to pants and even towels. And when he ran out of things to wash and iron it seems he dug down so deep into the laundry basket that he uncovered an archaeological treasure trove of old clothes that I only vaguely remember. All now nicely washed. And ironed.

I’m looking forward to getting some energy back. At the moment even brushing my teeth is exhausting, but in the meantime, I shall just thank my lucky stars for the resilience of my immune system, my partner Simon, the support and love of my family and our wonderful, treasured NHS.

Oh, and I should also thank Mike, this magazine’s editor, for encouraging me to write about my experience. He was probably right. Of course, whilst I, in time, will recover... he will always be “grumpy”.

And in these fast-changing times – I like that.

Contact @EmmaSamms1