SCOTTSDALE, AZ — A Scottsdale woman who is recovering after contracting COVID-19 is speaking out, to help others learn from her experience.
Shelley Wood has been quarantined at home, fighting through all the symptoms linked to the deadly virus for more than three weeks.
"It feels very similar to the flu, but it is ten times worse than the flu," said Wood.
She does not know how or where she may have picked up the coronavirus. She recently flew to South Carolina to visit her father, whom she had just reunited with, thanks to Ancestry.com.
"I am so freaking clean. I had my gloves on when I traveled to South Carolina. I had my face mask on, I was very, very careful. I had my hand sanitizer with me, I had people looking like me on the plane like I was an idiot because I had a face mask on," said Wood.
A couple of days before she left South Carolina, Wood says she started getting some headaches, but it was almost a week after she returned, that the worst symptoms of COVID-19 kicked in.
"My head hurt so bad, it feels like your head is going to explode. Then my lower back started hurting. It hurt for several days. My whole body was aching. I was constantly shivering. I could not taste or smell anything, and my lungs. I couldn't breathe completely all the way in. When I tried to do that, it caused a lot of coughing. I felt a tightness in my chest, like I wasn't getting enough air. It was like someone had wrapped tight rubber bands around my lungs," said Wood.
Unlike so many others who have had a tough time getting a doctor to approve them for a COVID-19 test due to the lack of testing supplies, Wood said she luckily got an appointment right away. She credited her recent travels and symptoms to the quick response.
"I had called 211 because my friend told me to, and I could barely talk at that time. I got lucky when someone answered that line. I almost felt like crying because it was so painful," said Wood.
Wood also shared with ABC15 that sitting out in the sun helped relax her muscles and eased the pain, along with medical marijuana edibles. Wood is already a cardholder, and she said the medical marijuana took her mind off the suffering, and helped her deal with the symptoms. She also suggested drinking lots of cranberry juice and apple cider vinegar, to boost your intake of vitamin C, along with water.
Wood has been documenting her experiences by blogging on her social media pages. Wood said everyone should take this virus very seriously.
"I really do think lets shut everything down. Let’s get a hold of this. It's not going to be forever, it's a short time. Yes it's going to affect our economy but I don't know what else to do," said Wood.
She said she felt lucky to be one of the survivors. Her fiancee also got very sick, before Wood did, but he was still awaiting his test results to find out if he too was COVID-19 positive.
Wood said she planned to continue to quarantine herself until all the symptoms were gone to protect her friends and her community. She also praised healthcare workers for diligently checking in on her regularly.