My coronavirus story: 'I'm fitter than the average person but virus got me'
Fiona Bugler, 52, runs a wellbeing consultancy and lives in Brighton with her son Frankie, 23, and daughter Ciara, 19. She says:
Frankie had been interning in London, commuting up every day using the Tube and doing a fair bit of socialising, too. But two weeks ago, he came home with a persistent dry cough. He was exhausted and just wanted to sleep and said he felt rough. We wondered if it was the coronavirus, but Frankie had a high temperature for only one night, so I didn’t bother seeking help as he was otherwise well.
Around the same time I felt unusually tired, but put it down to the after-effects of running a half-marathon at the beginning of the month.
But by the next day, Friday, I’d developed a high temperature — 38.5c — and my sense of taste and smell had disappeared virtually overnight. I had no appetite.
I was aching all over and had a pain in my chest and upper back and, despite my tiredness, I found it hard to sleep. I also had a dry cough. Sometimes I would feel like I was getting better for a few hours, and then I’d feel worse or develop another random symptom such as earache.
As if that wasn’t enough, I developed an unrelated urinary tract infection (something I am prone to) and phoned my GP surgery to ask for antibiotics.
When I reeled off my other symptoms, my GP said it sounded like I had Covid-19 and should self-isolate and not go outdoors at all for at least seven days. I asked how he was coping, and he admitted he had 40 other patients to phone back after me.
To be honest, I didn’t have the energy to go out anyway. I’m an endurance athlete but I was completely floored by this.
I woke up yesterday — ten days after my symptoms started — and still felt terrible, like I had been poisoned. This is going to take some time to get over, even though I am fitter than the average person.