A Sooke woman currently in ICU at Royal Jubileee Hospital took to social media to share her ongoing battle with COVID-19 in hopes it helps to save a life.
Sharlene Amerl, a single mother of two, said she was fearful how she would react to the ingredients in the COVID-19 vaccines as she had leukemia when she was six years.
Because of these fears, and even though she was advised to get the vaccine, Amerl decided against it for herself and her 13-year-old daughter.
“This is no joke, and VERY difficult for me to share! No judgements needed, I’ve paid the ultimate price of living in fear,” Amerl said in a Facebook post.
Amerl said she battled the virus silently for a week because she was “scared, ashamed” and didn’t want anyone to know she had it but also hoped it was just a cold.
She went and got tested on September 12th and the test results came back positive – at the same time, her daughter also tested positive for the virus.
“I laid in bed for 8 more days, following isolation orders, but sleeping 20-22 hours a day, I was so exhausted and getting sicker each day while trying to down all the vitamins and liquids I could,” said Amerl.
Amerl said she called 911 twice but she said she was told by paramedics that the hospitals were full and would likely be turned way.
She decided to stay home, however, her conditions worsened and on September 20th, she couldn’t breathe properly or walk.
“When I woke up Monday the 20th, I knew I was in real trouble right away, I couldn’t breathe, I couldn’t walk, I just wanted to sleep immediately! Thankfully I called 911 one last time! The third set of paramedics I had was this amazing team, who finally took me into the hospital, and said “we’ll take care of everything, don’t worry, we’ve got you,” Amerl wrote.
She has been in hospital since, and is slowly battling the virus one day at a time, but reiterated this has been the worst fight of her life.
“I can’t describe how painful, brutal and horrifically cruel COVID is to endure!”
Amerl avoided intubation, which she said was a possibility when she first arrived at Royal Jubilee Hospital.
Amerl said if she had her time back, she would have gotten vaccinated; but added that she would be getting the vaccine once she is able.
“I’m sharing my story, sharing my vulnerability in hopes it helps to save a life. COVID is evil and it is a silent killer! You just slowly get worse and worse, until you’re too sick to save yourself, almost like a gas leak… you just want to go to sleep,” Amerl described in her social media post.
Amerl said that her 13-year-old daughter is doing much better, and that her 10-year-old son received a negative result on his birthday.
As of this publication, 87.3 per cent (4,046,960) of eligible people aged 12 and older in BC have received their first dose of COVID-19 vaccine and 79.9 per cent (3,701,696) received their second dose.