Adam’s doctor calls me at 10.30pm, the doctor is calm on the phone, he tells me Adam’s condition now requires additional assistance from ITU, they are concerned that he is not maintaining his saturations. The doctor goes on to say that in his limited experience of covid patients in ITU, it goes one or two ways, they either pick up straightaway or they need to be sedated and intubated, he isn’t sure at this point what way this is going to go. I thank him for his call and call Adam’s mum, I pass on the information, I am calm, composed and matter of fact. She will call his sister and I call his brother; I am explaining what is occurring to Adam’s brother and it suddenly sinks into my brain, I can’t speak, I am mid cry, trying to stop it, I can’t, I’m making a whaling noise.
The realisation of the enormity of Adam’s situation has hit me, I am alone and there is nothing I can do, I feel helpless, totally useless. Adam’s brother wants to drive to my home, I tell him he can’t, I feel awful, but the risk is too much. I’m crying now, now as I am reading back what I have written, it’s just bringing how I felt at that moment all back, this is so hard to write.
I call my brother, I can’t speak, I manage the update, my brother understands how concerned I am, we had a telephone conversation at the beginning of March. I told him that as my next of kin, he has to abide by my request and my decisions he thought I was taking the micky, I wasn’t, I was serious, I don’t want to be intubated and I don’t want CPR, I don’t want to live my life lesser than I do now, mentally or physically. He understands but gets me to agree to intubation if I get really ill at the start of this and not later on, I don’t want to be intubated by dentist. My brother obviously remembers this conversation as I am speaking to him about Adam, he is trying to calm me, I’m in a dark pit of despair, my world has become a lot smaller and I am hurting mentally and physically. My brother wants to drive to my home, again I am explaining the risks, he doesn’t care he is coming, I remind him he has his wife, his child and our dad to look after, he has successfully managed to maintain a complete lockdown and total isolation at his home, for the past few weeks, he can’t break that, he won’t be able to go home, I remind him that I am positive for covid. He agrees to stay where he is, I promise to keep him updated.
I send Adam a message every half an hour, I let him know that I am here, I miss him, I love him, I want him home, he doesn’t answer. The mind is a funny thing, it takes you to the extremes of humanity, I was in a dark place, with dark thoughts, yes I thought about being on my own forever, I didn’t like it, it scared me, I am sitting up in bed absolutely petrified for about what is to come. I’ve been through all the scenarios, none of them are good, the despair has me in its grip and isn’t letting me go.
I call a couple of friends to let them know what’s happening, they can’t do anything for me, I feel their frustrations, I promise to message when I know more information. My friend’s brother contact’s me, he has been checking up on us both since we got unwell, he is really upset that this has happened to Adam, he tells me that I am family and we are going to kick this. I message Adam’s best friend, he has been contacting everyday since Adam has been in hospital to check up on me, I explain what has happened, he makes me promise to contact him as soon as I know anything, he doesn’t care what time it is.
It’s the early hours in the morning and two of my friends notice that I am online and contact me, they both keep me going with positive messages, encouragement and love, the Crown muffles away in the background, I’m taking no notice of it, ‘continue watching’.
When I message Adam at 2am, he responds, I’m crying with happiness and I can’t see what I am writing, my eyes are blurry with tears. He said he feels like shit, the nurse calls me, he hasn’t been intubated, he is on high flow oxygen, IV antibiotics and fluids and something to make him cough up the nasties from his lungs. The doctors will make a plan in the morning, at the moment he is stable and comfortable. I update the family and everyone that have been messaging me, I’m told by everyone to go to sleep, I can’t, my brain wont stop, even the brain fog has cleared a little, just to keep the irrational part of my mind going. I press ‘continue watching’ for Netflix’s questions.
I did sleep and checked my phone first thing, I send Adam a message to let him know I am up, its 7.30am, I don’t get a response, I get in the shower, it’s a good way to have a really good cough, then spray the bathroom down afterwards, still no response from Adam. Its now 9.30am my irrational brain kicks in, I ring the ward, I don’t want to, but I must for my own sanity, not knowing is torture to my mind. Adams sleeping the nurse updates me, he has had a good night considering, they are waiting for the doctor’s rounds, for a plan.
Adam video calls me later in the morning, I spend it crying, I must have been a sight. We message each other for the rest of the day, it’s a disjointed conversation as we both keep on failing asleep. Plan of action is to carry on as we are, oxygen, IV antibiotics, fluids, cardiac monitoring, atrial line. My buddy who I happen to work with, videos calls me every morning and evening, I think she is making sure that I am still alive, I send Adam screen shots of her nightly wave to him.
The next morning, I send Adam a message with a picture of the cat, she isn’t happy about it, she hasn’t groomed her fur yet. I arrange for one of my friends to drop of some squash to him, I am so grateful that she is able to do it. It’s a tough day for me and everything is making me cry, Adams mum popped up to drop off somethings for me, I can’t remember the last time I saw her, I’m standing in the window crying, she on the other side of the window and puts her hand up to the window, I put mine up as well. Tears filling my eyes as I am typing this, I hope crying is healthy. As soon as Adam’s mum leaves my phone rings it’s a video call, I try and wipe the tears away, it’s from my friends in work, immediately I start crying again. I compose myself just to say everything is OK, its really good seeing all their faces and its gives me a boost just talking to them.
Adams sister and brother set up a WhatsApp group, its called Boris’s best friend, the idea is for me to share information to one place, this way everyone knows at the same time, Adam’s not part of this group, so we can talk about him, without him knowing.