Council on Energy, Environment and Water Integrated | International | Independent

#KeepingTheFaith: We have to Fight the COVID Fear in Our Minds First

  • story img


    “We have to fight the COVID fear in our minds first.”


The test

I couldn't smell anything, and I had tremendous body aches from from the night I reached Chennai from Delhi. I knew something was wrong and self-isolated in the room on our first floor. My parents and brother remained on the lower floor. My father was hopeful that the symptoms were not COVID. But I knew that I was most likely infected and went for the test to the government hospital in the neighbourhood.


Even though I was reasonably sure I had the infection, when I got the COVID positive result, I did not react well. The first few days were tough. I would lose my temper often. And what made it worse was that I could not smell anything. Not my morning cup of coffee, the food I was eating, or even the strong-smelling sanitisers. You are isolated from your family. Your sense of smell and taste shut down. And you feel cut off in more ways than one.

Fixing a timetable

I would say this is the time, more than anything, for discipline, for creating a timetable for yourself. When I see the anxiety around today, I remember my first days. We have to fight COVID in our minds first. I repeatedly told myself that this would pass and did not let myself overthink the what-ifs after those initial days.

Consultations with our doctor helped set a regimen of food and medicines, which my family and I followed without fail. Don't let go of your meals, medication and rest even on the worst days, even if you can't taste a single thing and have no enthusiasm to eat. And if you are not sleeping, then keep busy when you can. I worked when I could. And each one of my new teammates at CEEW would check in daily to see how I am doing.


Any form of art calms me. So, I taught myself origami. Folding paper is both cathartic and involving. And I listened to music - a playlist of old Tamil songs, spiritual songs, songs from Ranbir Kapoor films and ghazals. These were my tonic through isolation and recovery.

One thing I won't do

Travel during a pandemic. And if I have to, then I will never take the late-night flight out of any place like the one I boarded. It's usually packed with people heading back after a day's work. I needlessly increased my risks when I travelled that night, and other's as well.