You think you’re safe. It’s already happened to you once, so surely it won’t happen again. You wake up with a sore throat, a cough, a fever. Maybe it’s just a cold. You take a COVID-19 test. You sit and wait. You look down. You see the second line appear . . . again.
While a majority of people have had COVID-19 at least once since the original outbreak in 2019, some have had it multiple times. Many people, like junior Eli Abel, thought there were major differences between their first and second time getting COVID-19.
Abel said he had worse symptoms and fatigue the first time. He explained that he tested positive for the first time Jan. 7, 2022.
“The day before, I started feeling some mild symptoms,” Abel explained. “It was really bad the day of Jan. 7th. I remember that school day.”
Abel said with his first COVID-19 experience, he felt like he had every symptom. He said that he had a fever, cough, sore throat and congestion the morning of Jan. 7. While having COVID-19 isn’t easy, Abel said coming back to school and making up the work the first time wasn’t very hard.
“I got it right before a long weekend, which was good timing and also like half of the school was out [with COVID-19],” he said.
The second time he had COVID-19, Abel said that he had a slight headache and sore throat, but when he returned to school he had a lot of things to make up because he had to be in school to take quizzes and complete class work.
“I missed seven consecutive days of school, which was a lot to make up,” Abel added.
He said that the first time he had COVID-19 he just wanted to lay in bed and sleep; however, the second time, since he was less sick, he missed spending time with his friends and playing soccer.
Similar to Abel, sophomore Annabelle Mugler tested positive for COVID-19 twice. Mugler said the second time she got COVID-19, she was on a summer vacation with her family, but she was the only one in her family who got it.
“It was awful,” Mugler said. “I couldn’t do anything and we camped and I had to stay in my own tent and wear a mask all the time.”
Mugler said she had just gotten back from a dance competition before her family went on vacation, so she thinks that is how she got COVID-19. She had the virus for the first time in the beginning of 2021 when doctors didn’t know a lot about COVID-19, she said. After her first time having COVID-19, she said she had side effects that did not go away for many months.
“For a while after, I had this chest pain and I had to go to the doctor for it, but they didn’t know what it was,” Mugler added.
After she was COVID-19 free, Mugler said that chest pain she was having caused her to have to sit out of dance. She explained that because the virus was relatively new, she never found out what the chest pain was.
Like Mugler, Choir Director Amy Blosser also had physical effects from COVID-19. When Blosser first got COVID-19 in fall of 2021, she said that for months afterwards, her ears were not how they used to be. Her ears would get clogged like she had a cold, but it consistently stayed like that for about two months, she said. She could always hear, but it was strange, Blosser added.
While she felt sick both times, Blosser said that she felt worse during her first experience with the virus.
“In the fall, I had three days of not feeling great,” Blosser said. “I never thought I was going to go to the hospital, but it was not fun.”
Blosser explained she believes she felt better the second time because of an oral antiviral she started taking.
“I took Paxlovid, so I was able to get on an antiviral and honestly [COVID-19] was kind of minor,” she said.
Blosser explained that she had a harder time mentally during her first experience with COVID-19.
“I was in my room completely locked up trying to keep my husband from getting it, and he didn’t in the fall,” Blosser said. “I am a person who can sit and binge watch a show, and I was stir crazy in the fall because I couldn’t get out of the room.”
She didn’t have the same experience the second time she got COVID-19 because her husband gave it to her, Blosser said.
“Since I got it from my husband, I didn’t have to just stay in the bedroom,” she explained. “He had it, so that was easier, then I could walk around the condo.”
Although Blosser has stayed healthy after having the virus, she said that she will always wonder if having the virus will play a role in her future health.
“I feel fine, and obviously I have recovered, but that is that thing that sticks in the back of my head,” she said. “I hope that all us that have had [COVID-19] once or twice don’t 20 years from now realize some sort of [effect].”