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I have won, I celebrate my resilience, says COVID-19 survivor

One of the discharged survivors who tested positive for coronavirus has recounted her experience inside the isolation centre in Lagos State after she was given a clean bill of health yesterday, March 30.

The lady, Oluwaseun Ayodeji Osowobi, Executive Director, StandtoEndRape, who wrote of her experience on her twitter handle, @AyodejiOsowobi, said she contracted the disease during a post-Commonwealth event in the United Kingdom earlier this month.

Displaying various photographs of what she went through in the Infectious Disease Hospital, Yaba, Osowobi said, for now, she had conquered coronavirus. She encouraged all Nigerians to live a healthy lifestyle.

Osowobi said days after her return from the Commonwealth event was tough as she fell ill after which she was tested positive for COVID-19. According to her, she lost her appetite, and was stooling and vomiting.
 
She said: “Life finds ways of throwing lemon at me. I have struggled with coming forward, but I want to inspire hope. I returned to Nigeria from the UK post-Commonwealth event (I totally enjoyed) and fell ill. As a responsible person, I self-isolated. Days after, I tested positive for Covid-19. The next days were tough. No appetite. Nausea, vomit and stooling were unbearable. I’m a blood type A and COVID19 dealt with me.
 
“I thought I was going to die and contemplated a succession plan for StandtoEndRape. I was on drugs daily. Sometimes, I had taken eight tablets in the morning, 13 tablets in the afternoon, 10 at night. My system threw everything out! Water, food, soap and all disgusted me. But I had to look at the wall and force myself to stay hydrated. I fought to live! I fought!!”

The coronavirus survivor encouraged the younger generation to desist from smoking and live a healthy lifestyle. “To every young person out there, please give your lungs a chance to beat this. Can I encourage you to stop smoking and live a healthy life at this time? A healthy lung is key!”
 
She added that there was a need for the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control to improve the country’s testing capacity. “NCDCgov and State Governments need to improve their testing capacity. Test mild/asymptomatic cases too. Sending strength to everyone who is fighting to beat COVID19.
   
“Some stigmatised me based on an article on national dailies with subtle messages like ‘why did she come back to Nigeria?’ I am faced with tears of joy. Nigeria is my home. Coronavirus is not a death sentence. People can survive and I HAVE!

 
“I continued the medication and asked to be in a separate ward. Sadly, I remained in the same ward as all other rooms were full. My ward had people who were positive. What if I get re-infected? For them, I was a beacon of hope and they needed me gone to register the progress.

“‘…You will stay a few more days. You know we take nose, mouth and sputum samples.’ ‘Am I still positive?’ I asked with flushed face. ‘No, you are negative,’ the doctor replied. The doctor apologised for the delay. I was anxious to go home but remained calm. I wanted to be free from this pain. I was unsure of what was going on. Why haven’t I been discharged? Should I be in the same ward? Could I get re-infected? I was worried but remained calm.
 
“On the third day, doctors said, “well, we worked with the info we had of you testing negative, but one result came back positive. Days after, the doctors shared the good news that I tested negative. I shared this news with family and friends! My blood sample was taken and I also tried to donate my plasmapheresis to help others. I hoped to be discharged.
 
“I waited to be discharged, but for two days, nothing happened. This is another phase of my life and I have won! I celebrate my resilience and strength. Call me SURVIVAYO. I encourage people to get tested and stop the stigma. Practice social distancing and stop the spread,” she said.

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