Hours after she was certified free of Coronavirus and discharged, Miss Oluwaseun Ayodeji Osowobi on Monday relived her battle against the virus. She declared victory, saying: “I’ve murdered Coronavirus. I fought to live. Coronavirus is not a death sentence. People can survive and I have.”
Miss Osowobi is the Executive Director of an anti-rape Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) @StandtoEndRape.
She said she had to swallow about 31 tablets daily, eight in the morning, 13 in the afternoon and 10 in the night.
The activist said she ended up vomiting the pills only to depend on Oral Rehydration Solutions (ORS) after becoming dehydrated.
She said she got infected with Coronavirus while looking forward to a fantastic consultancy job, which she eventually lost.
She praised Lagos State Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu for coming to see her.
Osowobi, who defied stigma, made known her experience on her twitter handle (@AyodejiOsowobi).
She was among the five people discharged yesterday from the Lagos Isolation Centre after their recovery
Her experience with Coronavirus is a mixed bag of pains and hope.
She promised to release the video clip of her experience.
Miss Osowobi said: “Life finds ways of throwing Lemon at me. I’ve 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
“Before returning, I had planned several interviews, I was scheduled to start a fantastic consultancy job and was also expecting to sign a contract worth millions. I lost them all!!!
“I had to self-isolate and also inform people I came in close contact with to get tested. #COVID19
“My friend and I kept calling @NCDCgov to get tested? What if we didn’t persist?
“No info on my test result. At 12am, an ambulance was at my house. I woke from sleep and was crying. I got to the isolation centre, but no one was there to receive me. I waited in the ambulance for two hours.
“The nurses eventually came out and treated me like a plague. I sat in the ambulance feeling rejected.
“No questions about how I felt. So many questions about my travel history. Same information I had provided to NCDC & Lagos State Government during profiling. Lack of data sharing!
“After two hours, I was taken to my space. I felt lonely, bored & disconnected from the outside world.
“Few days after, another patient came in. We bonded. Days later, patients trooped in.
“Are people observing self-isolation and social distancing?” I was so scared for Nigeria.
“The next days were tough. No appetite. The nausea, vomit & stooling was unbearable. I’m a blood type A & #COVID19 dealt with me. I’ll share daily symptoms & recovery process in a video tomorrow.
“I thought I was going to die and contemplated a succession plan for @StandtoEndRape”
Osowobi explained how she and other coronavirus patients were managed at the isolation centre.
She described the medical team as fabulous.
A major highlight was how she was on 31 tablets per day which she ended up vomiting.
She said: “I was on drugs daily. Sometimes, I‘d take 8 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’d look at the wall and force myself to stay hydrated — drank ORS. I fought to live! I fought!!”
Notwithstanding, Osowobi, who was the third Nigerian to be infected by Coronavirus, said she later tested negative.
She added: “Days after, the doctors shared agood 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. I continued the medication and asked to be in a separate ward. Sadly, I remained in the same ward as all others 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.”
She recounted her encounter with a doctor in her last moments in the Isolation Centre
She quoted the doctor as saying “…You’ll stay a few more days. You know we take nose, mouth & sputum samples.”
“Am I still positive,?”I asked.
“No, you’re 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 3rd day, Doctors said, “well, we worked with the info we had of you testing negative, but one result came back positive.”
“My family & friends were becoming anxious. People in my ward who earlier celebrated the news of my result suddenly lost hope.
“Why are you still here? You shouldn’t be here with us. You should be separated from us now…People in my ward muttered. I tried to calm them.
“Today, I am proud to inform you that I murdered COVID-19 and I have tested negative twice! I have been discharged! I bless God for His mercies. Coronavirus is NOT a death sentence. People can survive and I HAVE!
“The nurses at IDH Yaba were fab(Fabulous). They deserve accolades for their hard work. Thank you Governor @jidesanwoolu for coming to see me.”
She said a takeaway from her ordeal was the value of friendship despite being stigmatized.
She said: “This experience reminded me of the value of friendship. Some people I refer to as friends speculated about this, but never reached out to check.
Thank you still. Back to the grind!
“Huge thanks to my family, @Triciabiz and Sola Odetola who were my backbone. Thanks to everyone who called, sent messages and tried to contact me. I am grateful and well. This experience reminded me of the value of friendship.
“Thanks to @ProfAkinAbatyomi, the health team at IDH+ Lagos State. The food was good. Thanks to @dondekojo for helping me get help. Thanks to my chat buddy, @akintonminde
“Thank [email protected] and @lailajohnsosal for the mental and material support
“Some stigmatized me based on an article with subtle messages like “why did she come back to Nigeria?” Nigeria is my home. Coronavirus is NOT a death sentence. People can survive and I HAVE!
“Here to remind you that no matter how you itch to do it or how convenient it may seem, never use your friend’s situation or information to score points. It’s a crass behaviour!!! Don’t be that person.