Covid Day 8
How a Brain Injury Survivor Defends the Brain Against Damage from Covid
I wake up feeling incrementally better than yesterday, but it’s too early to tell by what increment.
My left nostril is stuffed. I get out of bed, find the X-Plus, put the nasal laser (hey, that’s fun to say) in my nose, and the other laser over my thymus and pocket the battery so I can begin preparing my coffee.
I notice there’s a bit of a spring in my step. Not a full Jack Lemmon spring, but a bit of spring.
My coffee is ready and I’ve set out my usual morning supplements, but since the X-Plus still has a few minutes left, I put some fresh water in a spray bottle to water our indoor plants.
In the midst of spraying over and over again, I recall learning years ago (from a Jeff Cavaliere video) about grip strength serving as an excellent measure of how much we’ve recovered neurologically from training. You establish a baseline normal and judge how recovered you are by how close you get back to that baseline.
As my hand tires from squeezing the water bottle sprayer over and over again, it seems to me that my grip is a bit weaker than usual, but not alarmingly so.
When the X-Plus is done, I take it off, blow my nose, and drink my coffee with my supplements. I don’t take the Longvida this morning. In part, because I’m feeling some hubris in my recovery, but largely because I know there is some curcumin in the SynaQuell that I plan to take later.
I go outside, sit in the zero gravity lounge chair, and do three rounds of breathing. My times are near my normal baseline. The nasal inhales (and some hocking) clear the last of any lingering congestion.
I take a hot then cold shower. I’m in the cold for maybe three minutes, my usual time.
It does seem like I’ve reached the point in the game where a win is practically guaranteed, but I still need to keep my head in the game. My immune system is tending to the wounded and rounding up the straggling enemies in the forests around the castle.
I get dressed. My wife and son are still asleep. We’ve all had one day where we slept a lot. This appears to be my wife’s day.
I go back to the chair in the yard, sit in the sun and do another session of breathing.
About 30 feet in front of me is a cedar tree, about 30 feet tall. The sun is right behind the top of the tree and when I squint it looks like a Christmas tree with an impossibly bright ornament at the top, a shining star.
I think about looking at a tree against the night sky in winter, how the stars shine through it, what must have been the ancient inspiration.
Two hummingbirds playfully chase each other in the air above me. One lands on a wire for a moment, the wire that brings electricity to our house, then they chase each other off again.
My mom loved hummingbirds in part because they, like her, were little powerhouses.
As I begin my third round of breathing, I stop looking at my phone. I know I’ll hear the sound of breathing end, and that will be my cue to take one last breath before exhaling and holding. And what’s the harm in one extra breath?
It’s been one week since my son tested positive. He seems to feel totally better now. He’s actually scheduled to work today from 3 pm to 11 pm at the restaurant. They had him scheduled to work yesterday before they closed due to “staffing issues” (Covid). Apparently, after you test positive for Covid, you can come back to work 4 days later so long as you stay masked the whole time.
For breakfast, I have plain yoghurt with pecans and some jam that our neighbour made for us. It’s delicious. I’m not losing my sense of smell. If anything food is tasting better to me.
Since she has a remote meeting at 11:30, I wake my wife up at 11:00. She’s still quite knackered.
I get some work done at my desk. Around Noon, I take my first dose of SynaQuell.
Around three, I drive my son downtown to the restaurant. Driving is something I wouldn’t have had the energy to do for the past couple of days.
It turns out the place is still closed (“staffing issues”). So we drive back home. He’s still on the schedule for tomorrow.
Around 5 o’clock, I take my second and final dose of SynaQuell. My son hasn’t taken it for days now. He’s also dispensed with breathing exercises. Basically, he’s gone back to his usual regimen of high carbohydrate meals (he’s made himself a giant cheese quesadilla fried in canola oil for his past three meals). I took a bite. It was delicious.
My wife spends basically the whole day on her laptop in bed. I occasionally bring her tea and ask how she’s doing.
Around 5:00, I take my son to the local game store for the Friday Night Magic tournament. Everyone has to be masked there.
My wife eats dinner (veg and toast with chicken liver paté and pickles) whilst we watch an episode of Only Murders in The Building. After she finishes eating, she does 20 minutes with the X-Plus.
Around 9:15, the boy calls for me to pick him up. On the drive to the game store, I feel like listening to my George Michael station. The song “Young Guns” comes on. This was the height of cool when I was about 10 years old.
My body starts dancing involuntarily in the seat of my Volvo wagon as teenage George Michael sings, “Death by matrimony!”
In the game store parking lot, my son hops into the car and casually tells me that he won the tournament, which is the usual result.
On the way home, we see a perfect half-moon in the sky.
When we return, the TV in our living room has switched to screensaver mode, showing a series of silent aerial drone shots over rivers flowing through epic landscapes.
I lie down on the couch, gaze at the river landscapes and think “Water seeks the path of least resistance. We are mostly water. But we are electrified water. And that makes our path a bit different.”
I encourage my wife to do a session of breathing with me, but she’s not having it. My hope is that she’s just where I was a day or two ago, at the nadir.
I take my nighttime Magnesium and L-Theanine and get ready for bed, leaving her to fall asleep on the couch. I take one last look at the drone shot of the pure green river flowing through the sunset orange of the Grand Canyon, and turn off the television.
In my next post, I discuss Covid Day 9 - 14.
Brainwave is an informational resource for people whose symptoms haven’t resolved after a concussion or mTBI. I aim to present this information in a clear and concise way, spelling out what’s backed by science and what remains unknown. Nothing here is meant as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. I am not a physician or a healthcare practitioner of any kind; I’ve had a lot of sports-related concussions and had to learn this stuff the hard way. If you found this information helpful or know someone who might benefit from it, please share and subscribe to Brainwave.