FLINT, DETROIT (WJRT) - (03/25/20) - A Detroit mom of four diagnosed with the new coronavirus says she has never encountered anything like it.
“I’ve had the flu before but I’ve never been through anything like this before," Eugenia Wisdom said. “My chest was hurting. I was very short of breath.”
Eugenia Wisdom has dealt with asthma her entire life, which was only exacerbated by COVID-19. She described her eyes hurting when she blinked, having a fever and a cough. However, her cough was a little different than the dry cough doctors associate with the coronavirus.
“I was producing mucus," Wisdom said. “I was on the brink of destruction. I was very, very sick."
She received her results the day after she requested and took the test at an urgent care facility in Hazel Park.
“When I first got my results I was embarrassed," she said. "I just felt like 'why me.'”
That feeling was fueled by social media and what she saw as a lack of understanding, compassion and miseducation associated with the illness, some of it from people in her own generation.
“I had to sit up in my chair in my room yesterday and just cry and just thank God that he chose to spare me when I have people who are my age...who are 36, 37, 40 [with] no health conditions whatsoever, and they didn’t have a fighting chance," Wisdom said. "Then you turn on Facebook and someone’s making a joke about it.”
Wisdom didn't need to be hospitalized or be placed on a ventilator. She says the whole situation is heartbreaking in more ways than one.
“It is very heartbreaking to think that something this serious is being taken as a joke," Wisdom said. “It’s hard to tell your kids they can’t hug you. They can’t watch a movie with you. They can’t sit on your lap.”
As for where she may have been exposed, she says it’s hard to nail down.
“I work in a factory," Wisdom said. "My son works in a fast food restaurant. The kids schools had just been closed down. We don’t know where it came from.”
She’s taking the quarantine very seriously, which means no hugs or kisses – or even helping her 5, 7, 12 and 16-year-old with their homework. They all wear masks and wash their hands often.
A little more than two weeks with the diagnosis she is coughing less, getting out of bed on her own and her sense of smell is returning. She’s at least now able to eat small bites, but she says recovery is slow.
The 34-year-old has a message for anyone, including those in her generation, who are not taking this seriously.
“We have to stick together, give information when you can. Don’t be afraid to talk about it,” she said. “Take this serious. Take time for yourself. Follow the directions. Everybody wants to come up with their own conclusions of what this might be. The reality is nobody knows.”