On sundays there was rouladen and klobe. They tasted like nothing. Just like the chocolate and the tea. But the body must be strengthened. And that’s why trixi, michael and julius zapf eat everything that once tasted good to them. "Sense"-off, full of memories. The whole family has corona. The sense of taste and smell is gone. All three are at home in quarantane. "Blob did not have to go to the hospital", says trixi, who got the worst of it.
She’s been battling the virus for two and a half weeks – and still has symptoms. Her husband and son were allowed to leave the house for the first time in 14 days. Trixi not yet.
It all started with signs of a flu-like infection. Since trixi press-zapf works in the old people’s home in rodental, her family doctor took a swab immediately. Because of the symptoms – neck, limbs and extreme headaches – she was written off sick for two days. "On the third day there was a loss of taste and smell, and a dry cough. Then it was clear to me: I have corona!"
Since the result of the first smear test was not yet available, trixi press-zapf registered for a second test in the HUK-arena via the county app. It took five days for the results to come in. "It’s hard on the nerves." Everyone in the family agreed. Michael zapf went into self-quarantine immediately after the first corona signs of trixi. Three days later he also had severe symptoms.
The result itself was no longer a shock. "The health department immediately sent out an e-mail containing all the rules of conduct. For example, how to dispose of the gauze, or that I should keep a diary of the course of my illness", says the fun-loving woman, who is also active as a city councilor in rodental. But now she was slowed down for a while.
Not to leave the bed
"For the first ten days I felt so bad that I couldn’t leave my bed and sometimes I could hardly lift my head from the pillow", she remembers with horror. Their bodies needed an extreme amount of rest and sleep. With painkillers she tried to get through the day. "I did not want to go to the hospital."
Michael was also weak and struggling with pain. Everyone had only strength for themselves.
However, they had to notify all their friends and acquaintances and tell them that they might have been infected. "That was one of our most difficult tasks", says trixi-press-zapf.
Michael had taken part in a firefighting mission and julius had also met two friends.
In retrospect, it turned out that none of the contacts had contracted the disease. "We are very happy and grateful!" But that was probably only because they had gone into self-quarantine at the first sign, even before they were officially required to go into quarantine.
The 15 year old son julius showed symptoms only after ten days. He has taken it well so far, his mother tells him. However, he also has no taste and smells nothing more.
How it can be that all three have been infected, although they have kept to the rules in the quarantine? "I can only say that we have all gone out of our way. Our house is rough, and we wanted to avoid infecting our loved ones at all costs. Everyone has their own bedroom and bathroom. For people living in the same household, I don’t think it’s possible not to get infected", trixi press-zapf is sure of it.
Don’t do it alone
Since all three of us tested positive, the family has been sitting together at the dinner table again. What’s written on it was delivered fresh to them every day by their parents and placed in front of the door. "Both michael’s and my parents brought us a home-cooked lunch every day and did the shopping for us according to our wish list", says trixi press-zapf with gratitude.
The family did not feel abandoned. Many friends had offered them help and sent wishes for recovery.
Now all three are looking forward to getting out again to be allowed. And hope that there will be no late effects. "That all three of us can smell and taste again", says michael zapf, laughing as he looks out the window where the fields have been vigorously bulldozed in recent days.
600 people plus 236 who tested positive for corona are currently in quarantine in the city and the country. The number varies daily.
Keep everyday rituals as usual
Patience and discipline, two virtues that are of great importance in quarantine. What advice does a crisis manager like gerald jose, a psychologist, theologian and member of the faculty of social work and health at the university, give to people who are struggling to cope and who find it difficult to cope with time alone? "The circumstances can become a challenge or even an overload if, for example, the structure of everyday life has so far been determined almost exclusively by auben or others", he says. But no one has to be completely helpless in this situation. Here are a few tips from the expert:
1. It’s important to maintain everyday rituals and habits. If I showered every morning before I left the house, I should continue to start the day with a shower, even if I get up later now.
2. Set small, manageable goals and tasks for yourself. Maybe i always wanted to read a special book.
3. Do things that require concentration and physical strength, as long as you don’t torture yourself too much. It’s better to read a sophisticated text than to watch an afternoon series.
4. Keep in touch with the outside world as much as possible, by phone, email, whatsapp, skype or whatever is available. In summary, anything that allows us to experience control over our actions and self-efficacy makes the quarantine situation more bearable. Anything that constantly creates a feeling of powerlessness and helplessness makes it (even) worse.
What happens to people who are suddenly cut off from the outside world and have to deal only with themselves?? Gerald jose: it all depends. First of all, no one in germany is normally completely cut off from the outside world. There are telephones, radio, television, daily newspapers, internet and even the post office, and almost all of us have some kind of access to them. If I really want to isolate myself from the others, then I go for example for two weeks to a hermitage or to another lonely place, where I have no such contact possibilities. I have already done this. Besides, we should have learned already as children to spend some time only with ourselves. But there is something to be said for the fact that there are people who were not challenged and required to do this in their childhood, which can sometimes become a disadvantage in later life. A little loneliness and being alone can have a positive effect, but real isolation over a longer period of time can actually become a serious danger or even life-threatening. In somewhat simplified terms, one could say that man is a mammal and a herd animal. Most of us are not made to go it alone in life. We depend on communication, proximity and exchange with others. Prolonged loneliness makes us more unbalanced and irritable. It reduces resilience and can, in the worst case, lead to depression and psychosis. Gross loneliness can even weaken the immune system to such an extent that the risk of serious physical illnesses increases. Isolation is not used as a torture method for nothing. Physical closeness, on the other hand, as long as it is perceived as pleasant, not only increases the sense of well-being, it also strengthens the psychological and physical defences and is therefore very important for the health of most people. But how well and how long we cope with loneliness beyond such extremes and how much communication and closeness with others we depend on is different for each of us and also depends on our personality, for example whether we are more introverted or extroverted, and our experiences.