Jenna is 8 years old. She loves to dance and gymnastics, and has no problem performing on stage! Jenna also likes painting and writing. She loves to write stories about fairies and castles.
Jenna’s dad tested positive for COVID at work and the whole family was sick. Everyone had milder illness and rode it out at home. Jenna’s older brother had a high fever, chills, and cough but Jenna’s symptoms were less bothersome and she only spent 1 day in bed.
Recognizing Long Covid
We thought we made it through the worst of it, but about 3 weeks after we were sick, Jenna started to tell us that she didn’t feel well. She said it felt like her body was too tired to move. Her temperature was normal so we figured she just didn’t want to go to school. Since she seemed okay and was already behind on school work, we sent her anyway, but she was sent home with a headache.
Each day then became difficult to get Jenna to go to school. She said she felt “wobbly” and tired. She was always laying down at home, but then other times she seemed totally fine. We eventually became worried and took her to the pediatrician who ran testing but it was normal.
It has now been 10 months and we have seen many doctors and specialists but most of Jenna’s testing is normal so we are not really finding treatments to help.
Jenna now usually does half days of in-person schooling because of her exhaustion, headaches, dizziness. Some weeks she is totally remote when she is really sick. Jenna is rarely able to play with friends anymore and we hate that for her. She will still attend dance lessons some weeks and watch because we are hoping she can join again soon.
Jenna needs doctors who understand Long Covid and can help us find treatment that works. We need the school to better understand what these kids are going through to help make this process easier. We also wish our friends and family understood what Jenna is going through.