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Jennifer+Jaruse+%28she%2Fher%29

JEREMIAH LEVY/SAGAMORE STAFF

Jennifer Jaruse (she/her)

My name is Jennifer Jaruse, my pronouns are she/her/hers, and I am a teacher at the Learning Center. I contracted COVID-19 in December and I had symptoms for about four days. I experienced body aches, headaches, muscle aches, and ran a fever. My friend and I contracted it after we were together and because her sister is a nurse.

Once I tested positive, I would say it was pretty tricky, because I wonder what I had gotten myself into, and if I could’ve done better. I was really worried about missing work, but because it happened during school vacation, I only then had to quarantine for six or seven school days. It was pretty tricky to navigate it all, and it was unfortunate because I’ve been so careful, but I still contracted it.

Testing positive for COVID was a scary thing. Since I don’t tend to get sick that often, when I get sick, I don’t like to make a big deal about things. But when you test positive for [COVID], it’s worrisome.

With my living situation, too, it was hard to deal with the day to day things that I needed to get done. I also worried about not being able to be in the same building as all my students because they were in the building. And I worried about my food shopping and managing all that stuff since I am a single person, but I reverted to doing a lot of Amazon deliveries.

I quarantined with the friend that also tested positive, and we just called out of work and stayed together. Luckily because I was quarantining with someone else, it didn’t feel as isolating as it could have been.

I’ve taken the virus pretty seriously and contracting it just reinforced that. I have to say that I wasn’t too worried about how the symptoms would affect me, but I do worry about the people that I’m surrounded by and how it could affect them. I recognized the seriousness in it before I had it, and when I had it too.

Since I contracted COVID-19, I had to let people I was around know that I was positive just so that they could get tested. And I mean, for me, I didn’t really think of it as necessarily a private thing. I was mostly concerned about not wanting to alarm students. I would say that, even though I came back after the appropriate amount of time, I worried that they would be worried about how they possibly could still be affected.

It was super easy to be vaccinated. However, that night I got hit with a lot of side effects. It felt like COVID all in six hours. I experienced a fever, chills, muscle aches, everything except stomach issues.

The side effects for the vaccine were any worse than the ones from the actual virus. I would say that they were about the same, but in a shorter time span. It felt worse since they all came at once, versus when I had COVID it was spread out over days and it would transition to different symptoms, but I wouldn’t say the level of intensity was any worse.

Since I’m vaccinated, I’m excited to be able to somehow get back to a little bit of normalcy in some sense, but still have precautions.

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