My story: Senior Matthew Abalos – Fighting Covid-19

My struggles with school and illness.


This is a picture of me during my battle against Covid. I felt miserable.

Matthew Abalos, Staff Writer

When we first started hearing about Covid-19, I thought it wasn’t a big deal. I thought it would pass quickly, like the flu. As February of 2019 turned to March and the school shut down, I realized that life was going to be a lot harder to live and we had to be more protective of ourselves and clean. Washing my hands and other things happened a lot more than usual. At the time, I thought this was an overreaction because I was one of the kids who struggled a lot. I struggled to get to classes and getting to know the online platform. I also knew I was going to have to not be lazy about getting the assignments done. 


My life outside of school is busy. I always try to help out around the house, helping my little sister watching her while my dad goes to work. There are three of us, my dad, my sister, and me. My dad transports cars for a living, moving them to dealerships or car rental facilities. I was working with my dad’s friend assisting as an electrician. 


These jobs are essential and important and not done behind a computer. It was hard because I knew there was a high chance I could get Covid but I knew it was important to help financially around the house. 


I am training to be an electrician. I think when I graduate I can do it as a job. It is very different from other jobs in construction. There is a lot that goes into it. All the wires that have to go together in a very specific way and the different parts to wiring a house or air conditioner. It is very challenging, but I really like the challenge. 


When school started up again in August, I felt good only because I was doing in-person classes, it helped me because I had a teacher in person who could help me with my classes. The safety protocols were very annoying at first. I knew how it would be and where I would have to go and wear masks, but it was important to me. I feel I can succeed in school only because I am in a classroom, a specific learning area. It helps me concentrate. At home, I have distractions like the gaming console and TV. 


When the Covid numbers in the community began to creep up again in October and November, I saw another shut-down coming. No one in the community was following mask protocols and washing their hands and keeping their distance from everyone else. 


Now it is the start of the week after Thanksgiving and we have been home for three weeks. For me, it is very hard to get on track with school because I now have Covid. It is harder for me to understand things and I always need to ask questions. I write an email and have to wait for the email. It is more frustrating and takes more work on my side. 


My dad and I both have Covid. We don’t know how we got it. It started around November 21st. The first symptoms we had were dizziness, weakness and we felt sore. Imagine after a good workout, your whole body feels sore. It felt like that without exercise. Then it escalated to having really bad migraines and a stuffy nose. We couldn’t taste anything. We also had a bad cough. On some occasions, we would throw up. It was horrible. It was so bad. I can’t explain it. It is miserable. I would never want to go through that again. 

Yes, I’m frustrated but I can’t control what others do. I hope others don’t get the virus. It is very scary that my dad isn’t working right now. I’m not able to work either as I recover from Covid. Our landlord is working with us. She understands our circumstances and has been very respectful of what we are going through. 


My hope is that we are back in school in January. I need that interaction with teachers so I can graduate on time this year. I struggle without teachers and need help so much. 


My wish is that we would all have taken Covid more seriously in February and March because now we are in a situation where kids aren’t in school and we will be going into another quarantine. Hopefully, people will learn to take it seriously and we can get back to some sense of normalcy and our old lives. Covid really sucks!  Please be safe, don’t get Covid and I hope everyone is doing well.