As mentioned in yesterday’s post, I had a COVID test scheduled for noon. This is something every surgery requires at the moment. My surgeon scheduled the appointment a couple of weeks ago.
It was pretty simple. My drive thru appointment was at Suburban Hospital here in Bethesda, Maryland, right outside of D.C. In typical Michele fashion, I showed up early. I was the only one in line. So I drove right up. First, I was stopped by a security guard who asked for my name. He checked his daily list to make sure I was indeed on it. At that point, the cones were moved and I was told to pull ahead where an incredibly sweet nurse asked for my photo ID. She then instructed me to pull up to the next station where three more nurses/medical professionals waited. They all waved at me as she pointed in their direction. Everyone was so damn pleasant. I’m not sure why I was so surprised and grateful for that. I half expected it to me more militant in nature. Not, like, mean, but very impersonal, Kafkaesque. But it wasn’t. Not even remotely.
When I pulled up to the three women who would be taking the actual swab, they reconfirmed my name and made sure the vial and bag they held actually matched up with me. At that point, she handed me a pamphlet of information about COVID and ways to stay healthy. (Wash your hands. Wear a mask. Keep your distance. Basically everything we’ve been told since mid-March.) She then explained exactly how the test would go. I liked that. As someone who wants all the information, this was calming. Basically, she’d go in one nostril, then the other, swirl it for 10 seconds and then it would be over. No problem.
The first swab entered my left nostril and wasn’t a big deal at all. In fact, for a split second I thought, “That’s it? That was nothing!” I readied myself for the right nostril. THAT was a bit more intense. With that swab, she went in there and then in there some more. It just kept going! I shut my eyes and she began to swirl it around and counted to ten, slowly.
Midway through, I guess I made a weird face or a strange sound or something because she calmly told me to breeeaaath. I did and regained my composure.
Then, it was over.
I spent about 30 minutes afterwards that with a slight tickle in an area of my head that has never (and hopefully never will) see the light of day. It felt sorta like when you inhale a little bit of pool water.
The whole experience was easy and quick. No big deal at all.
Results will be sent directly to my surgeon for Monday morning’s 9:45 AM start time.
Still incredibly nervous. I will be updating here daily about recovery, pain, outcome—the works. It makes me feel better, writing. Like a therapy session. :]