28th of February:

I’m excited like a little child at the advent of Christmas, eagerly awaiting the return of my husband: who works out of the country for months at a time.

He was coming home the next day, and I could barely contain myself at the prospect of seeing him again. We had fallen into a routine of sorts over the years he worked away, and now I get to see him and spend a month with him, just being together and getting reacquainted.

He called me and asked me to look up Coronavirus. I had heard about it being in Wuhan, China, so I couldn’t understand why he was asking me; He was insistent though and reminded me yet again, to make an appointment for him at the doctor to get tested. He had asked me the week before, but I dismissed his concerns and assured him based on what I had read: the information out there, it was nothing more than a terrible bout of flu.

I had barely recovered from double pneumonia, which permanently scarred my lungs so while I understood his concerns; I thought he was being overly cautious.

“It’s bad in China and spreading to Europe and America’s,” he insisted.

“Yes, I read that but, we are in Africa, and there is nothing here,” I replied.

“Please babes make an appointment for me to see a doctor and get tested, I don’t want anything to happen to you,” he responded.

I reluctantly agreed while rolling my eyes.

I made the appointment for Tuesday, the Third of March, thinking that he would be tired and would first want to get his “land legs” back and just relax and be with me, and the children.

We have been together for 29 years already, so whilst we have “settled” into this marriage, we are both independent yet attached. We often have these conversations where we look at each other and laugh that we are still together because we are so different. I must say that though it’s hard when he’s away working because I miss being with him. I am like a person in the throes of teen love during the times we are together. We seem to have beaten the odds, which serves as great amusement to us as we enjoy being in love.

My husband can be annoying and pedantic, and has both feet firmly on the ground while mine is floating around on some cloud! Perhaps our differences are what make us stick to each other. As we get older, and because of my near-death experience with the illness, he tends to nag about my health, and I tend to flip him off; in a good, not a bad way!

That night, I knew I would not be able to sleep because I looked forward to him being here.

29th of February:

I drove to the airport to fetch my husband. The music was loud, and I enjoyed the drive while giving thanks for his safe return. As soon as I laid eyes on him, we both started smiling broadly and hurriedly walked towards each other. He looked tired, but that’s not unusual: he has been working for months. I moved to hug him, and he stepped away.

“Let’s get the results from the doctor first babes,” he said.

I grab his arm and ignoring his caution, I kiss and hold him tightly: grateful that he seems ok.

“Why is your voice so hoarse,” I asked.

“I don’t know, and my throat is also sore, and I have a headache,” he answered.

“Well, not worry, as soon as we get home, you can put your feet up and just relax,” I smiled.

And hand in hand, we walked towards the car; both relieved that he was home and all was well.

3rd of March:

He wants to cancel his doctor’s appointment, but I don’t think it’s a good idea because he doesn’t look well and hasn’t bounced back to health as he always does. 

The past few days we have been looking for information about Coronavirus, but there is not much out there: it tells you about a fever, headache and maybe sore throat. He doesn’t have a fever though so he is fine, even though he looks ill. He rarely becomes sick, so when he does, it’s of great concern because he has a good immune system. 

The doctor tells us to sit separately from the other patients, which we do and when it’s his turn, we explain to her where he has been and why he needs to be tested. She asks questions, takes his temperature: which is normal and gives him tablets for his headache. She says there is no need for a test as he doesn’t have a fever.  

We leave the doctors rooms, happy in the knowledge that he doesn’t have Coronavirus.

Two days later, our daughter rushes our granddaughter to the hospital because she has a raging fever…

To be continued.