2021ii17, Wednesday: the other shoe.

So it’s four days since I took a test, three since the result. Not much in the way of symptoms. How long, o Lord, how long…

Short thought: This is weird. Day four (at least) of having The Bug (again, I think). And aside from a mild headache and some fatigue: nothing to speak of. Heart rate? Normal. Blood O2? Normal. Temperature? Normal*. I’m in limbo.

I confess I hadn’t really thought through what it would be like to get a positive test while asymptomatic. I realise that’s a failure of imagination on my part. But it’s odd. Here I am, self-isolating as best I can, knowing that in theory the clock runs out on that next Tuesday night – but also knowing, as far as I’ve been able to find out, that while symptoms mostly emerge within 5-6 days of infection, it could be a couple of weeks.

So if I was tested on Saturday, in theory I could be sitting here happily for another 10 days or so and still get the whammy at the end of it, even if that’s at the far end of the probability curve. 

In the meantime: limbo. Bayesian reasoning doesn’t help, because I haven’t got any more useful info than I had on Sunday. The lack of major symptoms to date isn’t a helpful data point because of the lengthy incubation period. The fact that I’ve no idea when, before Saturday, I picked it up means that period in itself is unknowable. (Which leads me to rack my brain unhelpfully. Where was it? The 20 minutes in Waitrose last Thursday? The half-hour in Tesco the day before? The three minutes in the pizza takeaway on Friday night? The five minutes picking up coffee on Saturday morning? When was Day One, really? There’s been nowhere, and no-one, else. And the rest of the family have been even fewer places than me.) Perhaps if we get to the end of the week I can adjust my priors – but the potential risk to others is so high, I might discount even that.

Even then, is it a false positive? Am I an asymptomatic (mostly) carrier? Or are the T-cells from last time doing a good job this time round? No idea. No way of having one. Sigh.

So here we go. Sit. Wait. Wonder. Fret. But also thank God, the stars and whatever any of us believes in that – thus far at least – I’m getting off far, far more lightly than most. Amen. 

(And yes, I know that given the above this feeling is a bit premature. Give me this one. Ok?)

*Thank you, Apple Watch. A gift to hypochondriacs everywhere, although in this instance pretty useful.


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