• Shelby Schmidt

My Experience With COVID

Updated: May 27



I have COVID.



Even though by the time this is published I will hopefully be negative and back to my regularly scheduled life. FINGERS CROSSED BECAUSE THIS SUCKS.

We all started this pandemic like a runner gearing up for a race distance that we’ve never ran before. We tried to google every last detail, go through different scenarios and wondered what we were getting ourselves into. We had the people who took it all very seriously and followed all the info to a T much like us runners who love a detailed training plan and all of the input we can take, trying to make our experience the best possible. Then there were some that just let it be what it was----like the people who do ZERO training and show up at a marathon starting line just figuring they’ll wing it and be fine.


This whole pandemic I feel like has been like a race build up. You have a game plan and you do the best to execute it to the best of your ability. Then life happens and throws you a curve ball.

Me and my family fell into the super serious, rule follower category during this pandemic. We didn’t go out, we did outdoor activities and didn’t see anyone outside of our home. We went to the store as little as possible, sanitized, masked up and did our best to protect ourselves and others. Even as my husband went back to work within the public we took all the precautions we could. We were SO careful and managed to keep COVID out of our home until about 3 weeks ago.


The past 3 weeks were full of figurative wind, ran and hills much like the 2018 Boston Marathon, where most us know is when Desi Linden threw down the gauntlet and was just a complete bad ass! From the moment my husband showed symptoms and tested positive, the rain started coming down. Navigating cleaning, a new routine and trying to keep my sanity was like going through heartbreak hill after heartbreak hill covered in the cold rain that just wouldn’t stop. Despite the crowd cheering around me (my parents) telling me it was going to be ok it felt like the furthest thing I could imagine. Just like the crowd support in Boston it helped to raise my spirits but quickly the stress and the fatigue of what this “Race” was doing came back with each step.


We started reaching the half way mark, the point where you realize you’re making tracks and only have half way to go. But then you need a bathroom break like the infamous moment Shalane Flanagan had to stop for those 13 seconds at the Port-A-Potty. My husband tested negative and for those 13 seconds it seemed like we were getting closer and closer to the lead pack and back in the race.


Then I tested positive.

Just like countless of elites that started the race on that rainy morning in 2018, we made traction but still weren’t in the clear. We switched spots, him moving up a spot in the rankings and me sliding back losing my grip at the win. I felt angry that after we had been so careful, I ended up with COVID and was out of the race. Like my running, I trained, I prepared, I executed my plan….but in the end it still wasn’t my day to win.



We are luckier than so many with this virus. While my husband had it rough he’s recovered, tested negative, and integrating back into the swing of things. I’m on hour 8 of isolation as I write this and hating it with every fiber of my being. I’m tired, achy, stuffed up and have a sore throat paired with a pounding headache. Even with that being said, I consider myself lucky. I’ve known friends who have lost loved ones with this virus, those who are having long term effects and those who still don’t even believe this all is real. I know how this virus is unforgiving and now have first hand experience, both as the caregiver and the patient.


Like the magic of the marathon, we all need to keep pulling together and caring for those we don’t even know. Wear the mask, distance, sanitize and do your part.

If you’re not feeling good than stay home. We can live, without it being a free for all.

The rain will pass, the hills won’t be as steep and the sun will come out. There will be other parties, other races, and other times for “normal”. Celebrate those that have not gotten this virus or those who have recovered while remembering those that weren’t so lucky. If we all just come together and not hit the wall, we can be out of this stronger and kinder.


I know it’s hard, long and tiring. We are all ready for our medals, finish lines and our free banana waiting at the end.



But first we have to finish the race.




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