As a practicing and renowned Naturopath, I had assumed my immune system was strong enough due to the many natural products I always fortify myself with. The tale of the frog in a pot of boiling water started running through my mind! Probably, I lost guard!
Then I remembered what Don William said in his song True love: “Adam and Eve on a Saturday night. That's when the trouble started. She said Adam let's go for a bite. She led him through the garden. And ever since then we tried to make sense of this mystery emotion.” Yea! Mystery emotions indeed!
I saw myself in this lyrics as my problem also started on Saturday through Sunday night when she came to Tema Community 7 for a friend’s wedding. The wedding ceremony became the breeding ground for the disease.
So on Monday, 20th of December 2021, my friend Laurie woke up feeling absolutely normal. She had zero symptoms and went about her morning with no interruptions. Upon arrival at her destination, she realized she was feeling extremely tired. Laurie’s whole body hurt and she was feeling quite sick with a headache. The next morning, she was not feeling any better. She still had a headache (the headache never went away), bodily pain, fever and chills.
The COVID Test
Early the following morning on the 22nd of December, 2021, she hurriedly went to a laboratory and ordered a Covid-19 Antigen test. The Lab Manager handed her results; she had tested positive for Covid-19! Her first reaction was of fear; she thought of all the people she had had contact with including myself, mum, brother, friends who she met at a wedding the previous week; it was an emotional roller coaster.
Her symptoms persisted for about 7 days and spent the Christmas indoors as she had to isolate from her family. She needed to protect them. The isolation and sick feeling plunged her into a state of depression. She would constantly cry in pain and ask God to spare her life. She didn’t want to die. The headache and fever never went away. And oh, lest I forget, she had severe diarrhea! After 7 days, when her symptoms began to subside, then came the weakness. She felt so weak that she could hardly do anything. The weakness persisted for about 4 days before she started feeling better.
COVID invaded Naturopath
I thought I was immune from the disease. However, my symptoms started 12 days after exposure; 31st December, 2021 at 2am. I started shivering and went to the kitchen to prepare my version of the hibiscus tea. The next day, I had a painful sore throat with persistent cough, and my urine became yellowish. It appears the symptoms of Covid-19 vary from person to person. Immediately, I also started thinking about those I had encountered before 31st December. For my uncle, he had previously taken the jab, so he was fine and had no symptoms. Laurie recovered and as a nurse she became my healthcare giver. I had to combine the covid protocol treatment with my natural treatment as well. One of the therapeutic order principles in Naturopathy is the incorporation of pharmaceutical drugs; so I needed to act immediately. Interestingly, Laurie’s Mum became my defacto Naturopathic doctor. She will bombard me with raw ginger and honey. I also did sun bathing. My steam inhalation was basically done using hibiscus tea.
Music Therapy Brings solace in COVID Recovery
In my case, I started listening to inspirational gospel and countryside music. Why that? After the onset of my symptoms, I started seeing cemeteries anytime I closed my eyes. I started listening to Yaw Sarpong and Asomafo songs and not forgetting Kojo Antwi’s Sikadam song. I started to research whether music therapy has an effect on covid patients’ recovery, and I realized some empirical studies had been conducted in this area. Music therapy treatments, tailored to each patient's needs, can involve creating, singing, moving to and/or listening to music in ways that have been shown to promote physical and psychological healing. Research has shown the reduction in pain and stress from such treatments can be profound. I realized that Music therapy is a clinical and therapeutic tool. But one thing music does for a lot of individuals is the joy it brings (Reidy et al., 2021).
COVID can deceive
As a researcher, I realized that COVID can deceive like Satan. My blood pressure was also not stabilizing. The Covid symptoms would begin to subside, making you believe you are getting better, then recur with greater force. My symptoms could stabilize in the morning and bounce back in the afternoon as if I was hypnotized by her blue eyes. Maybe the thing we most desire exposes us to the disease. Another thing I remember is that the symptoms were deeper than deep and hotter than blazing fire. I was alone for so many nights. I really started to wonder and maybe a spell I could fall under! Laurie’s Mum says Covid is just phlegm and I just smile. I smile because, indeed, he who feels it, knows it more!
Do not become a boiled frog
My experience with Covid-19 was scary, physically, emotionally and mentally exhausting, and I started thinking about those who suffered and died in this pandemic. I entreat everyone not to lose guard, do not become like the frog in a pot of boiling water! Take the protocols serious! I would never wish this experience for anyone. I thought I was invincible as a Naturopath until COVID Humbled and pierced me like Elvis film.
The Author is an honorary Professor of Naturopathic Medicine and founder of African Naturopathic Foundation.