Would you look at that, I’m finally updating on time!
I’m on the 11th day of my home quarantine and if there’s one thing I can tell you about this whole process – it’s not easy.
Sure, theoretically it sounds like a walk in the park. Sit at home, get waited hand and foot, watch YouTube and chill!
In reality, there’s a lot of factors that come between you and this chill time. God knows we overthink even when there is no quarantine, but in a home quarantine, your mind runs absolutely rampant with all sorts of scary scenarios. Amidst an increasing number of infected patients, an increasing increase in the number and the frankly terrifying world death toll, the mind can conjure some pretty horrifying scenarios.
Thanks to some of these running through my head, I ended up barely sleeping last night and woke up with one hell of a headache.
Thankfully, this headache abated as the day went on but it gave me a fright and I very nearly panicked even though I knew it was because of lack of sleep. (I always get headaches if my sleep schedule is disturbed)
Equally thankfully, it only took a 1hour 45 minute video call with my calm sister to get me out of these thoughts and back on track.
I’ve been trying to keep myself busy, but with only me for company most of the time it gets a little tough to not overreact at the tiniest of things. Now I’ve been taking my temperature three times a day, no fever, no cough, no sore throat so I’m not downplaying any symptoms.
So far I’ve been toughing it out, but now that I have only a few days of mandatory quarantine left, I can’t help but acknowledge how scared I’ve actually been.
This fear isn’t irrational, I was in a country that is now one of the worst hit and I made it home before it was too late and I have my dad to thank for that. He kept calm and made sure I wouldn’t fly into hysterics when the world was literally crumbling around me.
That fear manifested itself acutely, thankfully I dialed my sister immediately since I knew she’d keep calm no matter the situation.
The rest of the day was spent on some chores, not too many so I wouldn’t aggravate my throbbing head too much but enough to work off the delicious food my mom keeps supplying us with.
Of course, keeping up with the news is the least favourite part of my day, but an essential one. I want to keep being reminded of why I’m doing this, if me staying inside means I’m keeping even a single person safe, then I’ll stay here until the end of the mandatory quarantine.
The difficult portion is, and I discussed this with a couple of friends, the lack of an outcome.
Usually, there is a sign to tell you whether you’ve been successful or not in an endeavour, but in this case it is lack thereof. If you don’t leave your home or room or wherever it is you are, you don’t infect people. You can’t really measure this unless it’s on a large scale and given the incubation period, you won’t even know for the next 14 days to a month.
Simply put, the people that are testing positive now were probably infected before I even set foot into the country. The ones I may have infected if I was a carrier and not isolated (I’m very much isolated, thanks) wouldn’t even turn up as positive yet. It’s mind boggling and extremely mathematical.
According to my friend, this is why people don’t quite understand the quarantine. Even when the quarantine is in force, the numbers of the infected continue to grow, because these people were infected before the quarantine. The ones who get saved will not know it. That’s the desirable outcome.
The numbers won’t slow down at first, there will be a peak, this is essentially where all those who were infected before the quarantine (assuming a perfect quarantine) will be found out. After this, the stray stragglers and remnants of the infected will be tested positive and no new infections will start anew.
This is when the increase in the numbers will start to slow. So instead of 100 new cases a day, we’ll have 90, then 80 then 70 and so on.
This whole process is very time consuming and this is why a strict quarantine is necessary. Without a strict quarantine, the increase in numbers will keep increasing, until it hits a maximum.
Countries like France, with a population of about 60 million has yet to see it’s maxima according to a news broadcast I watched earlier today. India has 1.25 Billion people and our maxima threatens a much higher number if the quarantine is not heeded.
This is why I isolate myself, this is why you must. We need to protect not only ourselves, but the people around us. Not only ourselves but our history and the history the future generations will study. We’re shaping the future, whether it’ll end up being an apocalyptic ruin or a tragic learning experience. Let’s not give history any more to grieve about.
Stay safe, stay inside. Jai Hind