Lucia , a 40 year old female woke up bright and early as always . She was tired of staying at home since she hasn't been to work ,awaiting her Covid 19 results for the past four days. She then decided that since she is not feeling sick she might as well just go back to her work as she is a nurse in a community health care centre.
As she got to work, the occupational nurse who took her Covid 19 specimen for test was startled. What are you doing here Lucia , occupational nurse exclaimed ! You are supposed to be on quarantine until your results are out and made known to you. But I am feeling well , Lucia answered. No Lucia go back home .
It was 10 am when Lucia got home ,her husband and daughter whom have tested positive for Covid 19 and had just received their results while Lucia was at work . My love Lucia's husband called lovely , before Lucia could answer she was interrupted by an sms from Covid 19 centre telling her that her results were positive.
The family stayed at home for 10 days on isolation as per Covid 19 guidelines.
Lucia's daughter Nomhle was doing grade 12 in one of the private schools in Durban South Africa.
Two weeks later the family got back to their respective jobs and school.
It was a cool August evening , when the family was having dinner at home .
Nomhle how was your day ,Lucia asked her daughter . Mom.... Nomhle started crying , I .... I think I've lost my memory , I couldn't remember a single thing from second term and every one is discriminating me because some how they found out about my isolation period . I am very sorry my dear ,I also have tight chest and was diagnosed with asthma on review today , Lucia replied. Lucia's husband Linda was quite through out the dinner.
Lucia got to work the next morning and shut her consultation door ,until her supervisor who wanted previous day's statistics pushed the door and walked in. Lucia was in tears and could not verbalize her feelings to her supervisor.
An hour later ,Lucia's colleague Lihle came to Lucia's consulting room . Lucia I heard from the supervisor that you are crying and she suspects that your husband is cheating on you .
Lucia' s supervisor was spreading the news of Lucia being emotionally unstable and suspecting abuse and cheating from husband.
Everyone was talking about Lucia' s husband infidelity and how it got Lucia breaking down infront of her supervisor.
Days passed , months passed .... Lucia's daughter still couldn't recover her memory. Lucia got hospitalized and was diagnosed with pulmonary oedema.
After a month of hospitalization Lucia got back to work and everyone was coming to her office to tell her how sorry they were that her husband cheated to the point where she was hospitalized. Her daughter Nomhle was on appointments with psychiatrists and psychologists to help her gain back her memory.
Another two months later, Lucia Wass diagnosed with Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and was put on chronic treatment. Lucia's daughter Nomhle could not continue with school as advised by psychologist and was to restart the following year . Life was now backward steps for be Lucia who had hoped for her daughter to complete matric and go to university.
Lucia's husband blamed Lucia that she brought Covid 19 disease to their family and that she must quit her job or he is filling for divorce.
Although they went to Clinical psychologist together as a family ,but their life was never the same . Lucia went back to work , everyone was giving her " the look" .
A few months later was the beginning of a new year . Her daughter went back to school to repeat matric , Lucia was at work with colleagues thinking she has issues in her marriage, which was true in a sense that her husband still thought she brought Covid 19 to her family . Lucia would close her consultation room and cry , wiped her tears and continue to see her patients with a forced smile.
Her life was all backward steps, at home and at work .Lucia has doctor's monthly appointment for her chronic condition, which she has not well accepted. Her daughter Nomhle, was slowly gaining her memory back. Many Covid 19 cases were being discovered and slot of deaths were being reported. This helped Lucias's husband to have a clear understanding of the disease and that ,it was not her wife's fault that they got sick .
As much as Lucia was adherent to her treatment and her daughter complied to her psychologist appointment , their lives were no longer the same . The happiness was taken away from the family and awkwardness had covered them , afterall a lot of finger pointing had happened.
It was a normal working day for Lucia, when her Supervisor Mrs Fynn called her in her office . Mrs Fynn was a tall loud and Very unprofessional lady. Mrs Fynn had five patient files where Lucia had given incorrect treatment and all five patients had come back with side effect of the wrongly prescribed treatment. Mrs Fynn had called all professional nurses and shamed Lucia infront of them saying she is using her as an "example" to teach her colleagues. I have decided to give you an unpaid leave for a month so that you can be able to find yourself Lucia otherwise you will kill someone and I can't take that risk , I hope you will be able to sort out your personal issues with your husband during this time ,Mrs Fynn elaborated. This meeting is adjourned.
Lucia walked out of her supervisor's meeting walking slowly and shameful .
No one from her colleagues spoke to her . She got into her office where security guards were already waiting with her staff packed. She left and went to her car . She drove slowly out of the gate in tears , one of the security guards offered her a sweet candy and tissue paper . She drove out the gate hopelessly.