CNN Newsroom anchor Brooke Baldwin announced on April 3 that she had contracted the coronavirus, and has been off the air ever since.
The subsequent 17 days at home have been rough.
Baldwin decided to write a personal essay about her experience for CNN.com.
“Evenings would bring on an eerie melancholy—Which was particularly odd for me—a glass-half-full/chemically blessed kind of gal,” she wrote.
Baldwin wrote about how the illness often brought her to tears. She felt awful, physically and emotionally.
“Looking back, my sense of time feels warped and inexact. Some days crawled by tortuously slowly, while others disappeared unaccounted for in my memory, lost in the wash of emotion, sleep, and illness.”
Baldwin and her husband began sleeping in separate rooms once her quarantine began. She wrote that he would bring her soup, toast and tea, but the food didn’t matter much to her because she couldn’t taste or smell anything anyway.
Baldwin called her husband’s attempts to aid her “restorative beyond measure,” and said that thankfully he still has not developed any Covid-19 symptoms.
“Get him one of those antibody tests because so far, knock on wood, the man has yet to get sick. Antibody tests are designed to identify individuals who have already contracted the coronavirus, including asymptomatic carriers, in an effort to understand the actual scope of the outbreak and determine possible immunity.”
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*We can do hard things.* I’m a gal who needs tangible progress. I can get the sh*t knocked out of me— but then little by little, I know that I will recover. The tricky thing with #covid19 is… you think you’re improving and then your body gives you the 🖕🏼. Last night turned out to be my worst so far — aches, chills, highest fever I’ve had. Tears. It wasn’t pretty. But I woke up this morning after a monster night sleep (the length of sleep I don’t think I’ve had since junior high school) feeling rested and at peace. My husband (who thus far has proven to be Superman) brought me our little routine of toast and tea — neither of which I can smell or taste — and I sat here solo just brimming with gratitude. This will all be over soon enough. I’ll go back to joining the rest of you in zoom calls and virtual work outs 💦 and wondering when this will all end and what the net effect of it all will be. (That teachers and nurses need a serious RAISE.) But in the meantime, this past week I have heard from THOUSANDS of you. And in my lowest moments with this thing, what would keep me from completely spinning out, would be reading notes and texts and comments from you. Growing up in the South… the thing my mom would always be yammering to us kids: BE KIND. Turns out — it’s been YOUR kindness to me that has been 100% the most overwhelming part of this experience. And I just want to say from the bottom of my heart: thank you. ♥️ #community #kindness #gratitude #effcovid19 #nyc
While the experience has been a terrible one, Baldwin is taking a positive from it: The power of human connection.
“And I realized that sharing my own vulnerability with others online and receiving positive energy and well-wishes back brings me the gift of connection. I quickly discovered how grateful I was to all of these people showing me love. It didn’t take long for me to learn to lean in and receive it. In my darker moments, I would log on to Instagram just to be lifted up by love.“It was overwhelming in a way I have never felt in my life. And it showed me how—even when the world stops and takes a collective breath—we’re all capable of showing up for one another. And for that, I will forever be grateful.
“I wouldn’t wish this virus upon anyone, but I hope as my smell and taste and some sense of normalcy start to return, that I will also hold onto the clarity and connection I found while I was so damn sick.”
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I’ll let you know when we post my “Coronavirus Diary” to cnn.com (takeaways on symptoms — I still can’t smell or taste — and also my revelations on clarity and connection). My husband <<knock on wood>> feels well. When I felt well enough, I read a lot of @glennondoyle and @brenebrown and watched @littlefireshulu, @unorthodox.netflix and @britishbakeoff. Tell me what else I need to read/watch as I kick the last bit of this virus! #coronavirus #effcovid19 #covid19