I am Yashika from India and you can also call me 雅文. I am a medicine student at Sichuan University in Chengdu. I have been living here for 3 years and have 3 more years to go until my graduation here.
I was in Chengdu when the virus broke out in China and during the lockdown in Chengdu. I was here also when the second wave of the disease started in India in March 2021. As much as I was satisfied to be in a safe place, I was worried about my family and friends in India. And as the conditions got worse and worse, I became stressed.
In March, India’s second wave had already started having a deadly impact on the country. People in almost every household had started testing positive. I started hearing news of my family and friends testing positive, including my young cousins. My extended family as well as my parents’ colleagues had started losing relatives.
I never thought that the impact of the virus will hit so close to home.
The capital, Delhi, was in a bad condition due to it’s high population. Almost all hospitals, big or small, were running out of oxygen cylinders, beds, ventilators, doctors, etc. The deaths kept increasing by the day. Ambulances were running around the capital and transferring bodies from houses to crematoriums to be burned.
The consequences of this second wave were unprecedented. Nobody had expected such a high fatality rate because the positive and recovery rates were always high.
When members of my close family started testing positive, I was worried. Even though my family took all the precautions and stayed indoors mostly, my cousins, aunts and uncles got infected.
My aunt had gone to the hospital to get the first dose of the vaccine. This was the first time she had gone out after days. She believes that she got the infection from there. Since she had already got the first dose, the reactions of the infection were not as severe. That is why my aunt did not want to be admitted in the hospital.
Another reason was because the condition of the hospitals were not great to accept patients either. There were much less beds, oxygen, etc. She decided to take some medicines to treat the symptoms and followed several home remedies that were followed by many Indians.
My cousin who lived in a different city in the state of Rajasthan had also tested positive after feeling a bit weak for some days.
He told me that he had lost his sense of smell and taste and had a moderate temperature. I felt a bit concerned for him as he lived alone and had to take care of himself, cook for himself, without going out. He managed somehow by ordering raw vegetables from his local grocery store and trying to cook while fighting this virus.
He had not been vaccinated yet as the vaccination program for his age group had not started yet. He was also self-quarantined and thought that it was the better thing to do.
I sent him a message every 2 days to ask about his health. After 2 weeks, he told me he was getting better, he had no fever and he could finally taste the food he cooked to see if he putting the correct amount of salt. I felt a huge sense of relief. He got the test again some days later and finally tested negative. I was glad that all my close family members had enough immune strength to defeat this virus.
The younger members of my family were not as scared when they tested positive. They knew that the recovery rate in India was still high and they were otherwise healthy without any diseases or other health conditions. They knew they were going to get better and defeat the virus.
However, we were worried for the older family members. They also had pre-existing heath conditions due to their age factor like shortness of breath and weakness. These conditions made me very anxious. But still, all the people who got infected, survived. They knew how to take care of themselves even if they were self-quarantined. The younger ones took a lot of care of the older members and got better in a maximum of 3 weeks.
When I heard the news of their successful recovery, I was relieved. I video-called them and saw the change in their health. They were happy and I was happy to see them doing great like before. They felt they were lucky.
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