TEMPLE, Texas — 6 News Anchor Leslie Draffin and her husband, Micah, both tested positive for COVID-19 on Tuesday, July 28, 2020. This is her first-hand account of dealing with the virus.
Leslie will be sharing updates via Facebook Live weekdays at 12:30 p.m. CST. If you have any questions about the diagnosis and experience with the virus, you can message Leslie on her professional Facebook page.
Saturday, July 25, 2020
On Saturday, Micah's symptoms started. Although, we only really noticed them in retrospect. Micah woke up with body aches and described it like being sore after a hard workout, nothing more severe. His energy was low and he felt like he had some nasal congestion but because he suffers from allergies we didn't think anything of it. I felt fine although I did have lower energy than usual. Micah took an Epsom salt bath before heading to work to try and alleviate some of his aches. He worked for a few hours and then came home, ate dinner and went to bed early.
Sunday, July 26, 2020
Micah woke up feeling a little better than he did on Saturday. I still felt fine. We met up with a few friends for a birthday party at their home and went to bed early.
Monday, July 27, 2020
I woke up with a scratchy throat and what I'd describe as a slight heaviness in my chest. My throat was also sore - kind of like how you feel when you have a normal cold. Micah woke up with body aches again. We walked the dogs and I went to the gym because my energy levels were great. When I got home and started getting ready for work, Micah let me know he couldn't smell anything. This is when I first started thinking... we could have COVID.
I immediately called my boss to let him know what was going on and then researched where we could go get a test. Fortunately, I remembered reporting that McLennan County was offering free testing at several sites because my doctor quoted tests ranging from $100-150 each.
Micah and I drove up to Waco and got tested at the University Baptist Church. It was simple and easy. We were in and out in less than ten minutes. We didn't even have to do a nasal swab! Instead, we swabbed inside our cheeks and it was as easy as brushing your teeth. The medical personnel at the site told us we should expect to have our tests back in 48-72 hours.
On the way home, Micah and I started contacting some of the people we'd seen the night before to let them know we were experiencing some symptoms and had gotten a test. Our doctor told us we could take Extra Strength Tylenol for headaches and body aches as well as vitamin C.
Tuesday, July 28, 2020
I wake up feeling like a have a chest cold. My chest is tight, I have some slight congestion but mostly I have a dry, scratchy feeling in my throat like I need to cough. In a normal year, where we aren't in the middle of a global pandemic, I don't think I would even call in sick from work with the way I was feeling since it wasn't "that" bad. Micah still cannot smell anything and now his ability to taste has gone too. We noticed this most obviously after he cooked breakfast (he usually does most of the cooking). I walked in and said 'Wow that smells so spicy!' and he replied 'I can't smell or taste any of it!'
Boredom started to sink in around noon Tuesday and I remember thinking 'How am I going to last through this entire quarantine if I'm already bored!' We continued talking to some friends we'd seen and spent most of the day resting. Both of our energy levels were low. Around 9 p.m. Tuesday night, we each got a text message and email alerting us to our results ... and that's when we found out we were positive. I immediately called my boss and texted our friends letting them know we had COVID as well as sending them the address for the free testing sites in Waco. During the 10 p.m. news, Kris Radcliffe announced that we had COVID and I posted on social media letting our extended family and friends know as well.
Wednesday, July 29, 2020
Micah and I both wake up feeling worse. I have lost my voice a little bit, I have more congestion in my chest and have a harder time clearing it out. I'm coughing much more today.
Micah has body aches and is very tired. As his wife I can honestly say, he's very rarely sick... in fact I really can't remember a time in our five years together that he's EVER been sick... so seeing him like this means I know he isn't feeling well.
We start taking a regiment of Vitamin C our doctor suggested - 2000 mg three times a day. Micah also feels like he's running a fever, so we get a thermometer and check but it doesn't register as being high. I have an interview for work and then check in with the morning meeting, where we discuss ways to continue educating people about COVID through my experience (hence why I'm writing this diary!). We also discuss doing Facebook Live updates at 12:30 p.m. CST on the weekdays via the 6 News Facebook page so I can connect with viewers... as much for my own sanity as anything else! So if you have any questions or want to chat, tune in there or message me on my professional Facebook page.
Throughout the day, I get progressively more tired and have a lingering cough as well as chest congestion. At times, it is very hard to clear my throat after coughing. So many people have reached out sharing their own stories of having the coronavirus and it's amazing to see how many different sets of symptoms people have experienced.
Thursday, July 30, 2020
Micah and I woke up around 5:00 am. He was having terrible night sweats and is now running a fever of almost 101 degrees. He's also having severe headaches and more intense body aches as well. I texted our doctor, Dr. Fowler with Equilibrium Squared Holistic Health, to see about getting Micah in for a Vitamin C infusion some time today. It's supposed to help recovery. I still feel pretty good. My throat is sore, I have chest congestion and overall I feel tired, but nothing compared to what Micah is experiencing.
We walked the dogs early so we wouldn't run in to anyone and because moving around is said to help with symptoms. Micah still can't taste or smell anything so he's planning to "just eat healthy since I can't taste it anyway!" Meanwhile, I'm craving comfort food! We binge watched the second season of 'Hanna' on Amazon Prime yesterday. It's a little gory but ended really well and I highly recommend it. If you have any suggestions for beating boredom, let me know on my social media or email me firstname.lastname@example.org.
Throughout the day, Micah continues to feel worse. His fever stays around 101 and his headache continues. At 5:30 p.m. he goes to get the vitamin infusion and when he comes home I can tell he's feeling a little better. A friend of ours dropped off chicken noodle soup, so we ate that for dinner and watched a movie. Then go to sleep around 9 p.m.
Friday, July 31, 2020
Micah wakes up early to walk the dogs and I stay in bed. Needing lots of rest and feeling tired is the main symptom I've had over the last two days. My throat feels better today but I still have the cough and chest congestion. Micah still has his headache, body aches and can't smell or taste but his fever has lifted.
This morning I got an email from someone asking me if my opinion on masks and social distancing has changed at all since testing positive, and it hasn't. Micah and I were wearing masks whenever we went out - the store, to the gym and to work. But what we've been told time and time again is masks don't protect us ... they protect others from us. So, maybe someone we saw not wearing a mask is how we ultimately got sick. I certainly hope more people will wear masks and continue social distancing, but I've also learned that you can't change people's minds no matter what you tell them or show them. So I imagine we will continue seeing people who refuse to wear masks and who think this virus isn't a big deal. While this virus hasn't affected me as much as it's affected Micah, and thankfully it hasn't put either of us in the hospital, I can tell you it is real and I'll continue doing what I can do to keep others from getting sick in the future - by wearing a mask and social distancing.
Saturday, August 1, 2020
I wake up feeling exhausted and my cold symptoms are still giving me problems. I have a runny nose and am sneezing, along with my chest congestion. When I say I'm exhausted, I mean I woke up from sleeping twelve hours and then needed another nap just a few hours later. I also have a headache which is located right behind my eyeballs.
Micah feels so much better, as is evidenced by him doing some projects for me around the house. He built me two plant stands and cleaned the garage. Meanwhile, I'm sleeping on the couch and watching Vikings. I go to bed around 9 p.m.
Sunday, August 2, 2020
When I wake up I'm not quite as tired as on Saturday, but my cold-like symptoms are still giving me issues. I've now added Benadryl to my list of medicines I take each morning, since whenever I sneeze it hurts my chest. Micah and I take the dogs on a longer walk this morning because I have a bit more energy, but when we get back to the house I take another three-hour nap. It seems like most of my tiredness happens around noon but after I take a nap I feel a lot better. Micah is feeling great! He did some work from home and I stained the plant stands he made for me. We spend the afternoon reading and then watch a movie together at night. I'm in bed by 9:30 p.m. and I wonder when I'll feel well enough to even stay up late enough to anchor a 10 p.m. newscast.
Monday, August 3, 2020
I slept well but wake up with the same symptoms I was experiencing all weekend: sneezing, runny nose and cough. My headache is gone and we walk the dogs, thankful it's not too hot! This afternoon I'm going to get a vitamin C infusion from Dr. Fowler, and I hope it makes me feel as great as Micah felt after his on Thursday.
Overall, my energy is much better today and I don't need a nap for the first time in days! Micah and I try to do a brief outdoor workout with our exercise bands and it only lasts a few minutes before I'm winded and he looks like he's about to pass out. So we decide we'll just rest a few more days and see how we feel. I go to see Dr. Fowler at 4:30 p.m. for my vitamin C infusion which takes just over an hour. It's cold going in and he starts me at a base level of about 15,000 mg. I feel much better afterwards and wide awake.
I have trouble falling asleep because of a nagging itch in my throat and the need to cough. We've started sleeping with an additional fan in the room because we've been hot at night and I wonder if it could just be some dust or dog hair that's aggravating my throat. I finally fall asleep around midnight.
Tuesday, August 4, 2020
I wake up feeling refreshed and alert for the first time in days and I have to believe it's because of the vitamin C infusion. I have a little nasal congestion but not much and the rest of my symptoms are pretty much non-existent. My itchy throat is gone but when we walk the dogs I still get winded easily. Micah feels fine but has a little bit of a scratchy throat. His sense of smell is slowly returning. I continue testing it by making him sniff peppermint essential oils and he says he can barely smell it! So that's improvement. I plan to sit outside today to get some vitamin D, which has also been proven to help lessen COVID symptoms.
I felt great all day with just a light runny nose and some chest congestion. I didn't need to take a nap!
Wednesday, August 5, 2020
All the days are running together at this point but the greatest news today is I feel a lot better! I'm not tired when I wake up and only have a little bit of chest congestion. It doesn't seem like I need Benadryl today either although I am still taking vitamin C at 2000 mg, three times a day. It's been ten days since my symptoms started and twelve since Micah's started. He's also feeling back to normal, just stir-crazy at having to stay inside for so long. When I spoke with Dr. Fowler on Monday he said I should be fine to return to work next Monday. He also doesn't believe there's any worry of Micah and I transferring the virus back and forth to each other - or prolonging our symptoms.
Micah and I spend some time outside getting a little vitamin D and then binge watch 'Downton Abbey'. I don't need a nap today, which is great, but I do fall asleep at 9 p.m.
Thursday, August 6, 2020
I wake up feeling great after sleeping for almost twelve hours. No symptoms this morning at all. I still take the 2,000 mg of vitamin c three times a day but I don't think I'll need another vitamin infusion from Dr. Fowler. Micah and I decide to go kayaking at the lake since it's easy to social distance, we can still be active and get vitamin D from the sun! I know I wouldn't have felt good enough to do anything like this just a few days ago.
I researched giving convalescent plasma but we can't donate until 14 days after our last day of symptoms. According to the Red Cross's website it can really help people who are severely sick with the virus. I went ahead and signed us up so we could be contacted by Red Cross officials and hopefully they'll let us know when it's safe to donate. I've never given plasma before, just donated blood, but Micah says its very easy. Honestly, if it can help someone who might be extremely sick then I'm all for it.
Friday, August 7, 2020
All my days are running together and I'm counting the minutes until I can get back out into the world! I feel great today with no symptoms at all. I've cut back my vitamin c dosage to 2,000 mg twice a day instead of three times. I'm giving myself one more day of rest before I try to work out again although I have been moving around more and getting more of my steps while walking the dogs. I can't wait to be back to work on Monday and get back to life as usual! Thank you for all the well wishes and messages and I'll see everyone on TV!
More with Leslie