Almost four months ago we told you about three survivors of COVID-19. It was a hopeful story that showed even if you get the virus it’s not a death sentence.
Find that story here: https://nbcpalmsprings.com/2020/04/06/coronavirus-survivors-share-a-message-of-hope/
NBC Palm Springs followed up with each of the survivors about their journeys with the virus. We learned what the road to recovery looks like and if they’re experiencing any long-term effects.
“Hi, how are you?” we asked Marcelllo Marino over Zoom.
“Feeling really good,” she replied with a swaying palm tree behind her. She took the month of July off to get some fresh air in San Diego.
“This break was definitely needed,” she said with a smile.
Marino works at a clinic in the Coachella Valley and will return to work in August. She said she still isn’t fully back to normal health-wise.
“My fitness level hasn’t come back yet,” she said.
Still, her symptoms are better than Tonya Moss’s.
“It’s just a day by day thing,” Moss said over Skype.
In our previous interview with Moss, she said she thought her positive COVID results were a “death sentence”. That was April 6.
While she now knows that coronavirus was not a death sentence for her, she still has bad symptoms to this day.
“Still have coughing, I still have asthma,” she said.
Moss didn’t have asthma before she got the virus but now she owns multiple inhalers. Recently, Moss thought she contracted COVID-19 again.
“Come to find out, it was strep throat and a severe case of tonsillitis like I’ve never had in my life,” she said. “Thereafter I just made some pretty big decisions and decided to quit my job that I’d been at for about 15 years because it was a really high risk location and after being sick I realized life is just way too short.”
Moss now works with kids with disabilities and hasn’t looked back. She said as weird as it sounds, she’s grateful to have gotten the virus because it forced her to re-prioritize her life.
She said she prays her lasting symptoms will fade away eventually.
NBC Palm Springs also video chatted Craig Kawashima from the hospital he works at in Northern California.
“Feeling pretty good actually,” he responded when we asked how he was doing.
Kawashima said since the virus, he’s actually healthier because he exercises more and takes care of his body.
His only lasting symptom: “I’m a little bit more sensitive to my typical allergies.”
Kawashima is now working in the highest possible risk location: the COVID unit.
“It’s kind of scary to go back into it but at the same time I know first hand what they’re going through.”
While their lives have changed in many ways, all three of the survivor’s messages to the public have not.
“Being safe and being diligent,” Marino said.
“Please wear your face coverings properly, cover your nose, cover your mouth,” Kawashima said.
“Do not let your guard down, it is very much real, it is very much still happening,” Moss said.
Even though they’ve all had the virus they said they’re still taking all the precautions because research shows antibodies can wear off. That means people who have gotten the virus can get it again.
Researchers say they likely won’t know the permanent effects of the virus for years.