Quaranteened- a story of COVID-19


Sophia Maxim

Spending days on end in my room, I worried about the potential consequences of my contact with others.

Ellie Winer

At the start of the pandemic, COVID-19 felt far away. We were all aware of its presence in the United States, but the virus hadn’t hit home yet. Even months into quarantine, I only knew a handful of people who had contracted the coronavirus. Nevertheless, I felt fairly safe. I had a small group of people that I hung out with and got tested a few times throughout the summer. 
Our whole summer was essentially ripped from us. I had anticipated going to summer camp as a Counselor-In-Training and seeing some of my closest friends. With that cancellation, one of my friends planned a getaway for about 10 of us. We got tested, proved our negative result right before the trip, and spent a week in Blue Ridge. 
Everyone tested negative prior to the trip. We stayed safe, wearing masks everywhere we went and avoiding people. It was an escape from reality.
I started to get congested two days before we were supposed to go back home. Knowing my body’s signals, I figured it was due to the altitude and weather change, not to mention our terrible diets while we were staying at the cabin. After I got back, it continued to get worse. I started to get more worried as COVID symptoms started to set in: congestion, sinus pain, and headaches. 
The following Tuesday, I  received word that one of the girls on the trip had tested positive after coming home. I was concerned, but figured she’d gotten it once she got back since she left a day early. The next day, I lost my taste, and that Friday, I tested positive. So did almost every other girl on the trip. We had fallen victim to a virus that had seemed so far away. 
My family didn’t test positive, so I was forced into my own personal isolation. For the next 12 days, I was limited to my bedroom, bathroom, and the small hallway in between. 
My symptoms were minimal, and I’m lucky to have a fairly strong immune system. My taste came back within a few days, and I experienced mild drowsiness and sinus pain. I wasn’t suffering from COVID-19, but I was suffering from boredom. I cleaned my entire room on the second day and every day after was the same routine. My parents brought me meals and snacks, and I just hung out. I got a headstart on college applications, watched “Euphoria” and “Harry Potter.” 
Twelve days eventually passed, and I was out of quarantine in no time. I tested negative and was able to reflect on my time in my room. It was truly a “quarantine,” which I hadn’t really been participating in prior. I was safer than some of my peers and a lot of the United States but still contracted the coronavirus. It was as simple as a false negative, or passing by someone without a mask in Walmart, or a drive-thru interaction. There were so many ways I  could’ve gotten it on that trip, which means there are so many ways anyone can get it. COVID-19 didn’t affect me badly. I spent a few days in my nice home, with minimal symptoms, quality food and care. But I could’ve given it to someone much less fortunate, who would’ve suffered much more. 
For many, the coronavirus is just a small worry in the background. Especially as teenagers, we often feel invincible to life. I saw a few friends when I got back from the trip and had to notify all of them that I had contracted the coronavirus. It was a big scare for a few days; some of my friends are at risk or have at-risk families. Before they eventually tested negative, I was worried that I could have potentially given someone COVID-19, which would have affected them much worse than it did me. COVID-19 can spread like wildfire- seeing one person can turn into a chain reaction of spreading the virus. Becoming a part of a pandemic that has taken so many grounded me, reminding me that it’s something that needs to be actively avoided.