“When I first got infected, I didn’t really feel sick I just couldn’t taste or smell”


My brother and me with our dog when we were little.

Interview audio

Miguel Palma is a a 21 year-old who currently is in community college looking for a future. Last year was very hard for him because of Covid-19.  Unfortunately, he got Covid and it was hard for him and his family. He goes through ups and downs in his life but never gives up hope. It was very scary for him and hard for him to not think the worst. Even if he was effected by Covid, he still found a way to be happy.



Marisol Palma: OK so, what was your first thought when you heard that we were in a pandemic?
Miguel A Palma: Um, I actually didn’t really hear about the virus through like the news or anything. I actually heard about it through memes and like YouTube videos cause everybody was making fun of it and not a lot of people were taking it seriously, so I thought it was just something like um, a small virus or something like that.
MP: What was your experience in seeing like everything in stores were gone like toilet paper, water, food, and other things?
MAP: Umm I actually saw all of that through the media like Instagram and all the videos were going viral. I didn’t really think much of it. I thought people were overreacting cause I mean they were getting toilet paper and water when there’s different ways of getting water through your house or you know, there’s other sources that you can use while being in a lockdown. At that point everybody was getting  um when everybody was getting supplies and stuff, nobody was really talking about… about closing down so everybody was assuming they were gonna close down. 
MP: Did you ever go in stores and see for yourself?
MAP: Actually when I went to uh, to the store, um, we were able to find a lot of things we needed. We didn’t really panic that much but there were certain places that we tried to go to and there wasn’t water, there wasn’t toilet paper and stuff like that.
MP: In your experience, when you got infected how did you feel?
MAP: Um, when I first got infected um I didn’t really feel sick I just couldn’t taste or smell and it was like a weird feeling because I was trying to smell the alcohol… Like the rubbing alcohol and I couldn’t smell it. I would brush my teeth um I wouldn’t taste anything. When I ate I couldn’t taste anything at all. Even like really bad smells, um I couldn’t smell them at all. So, it was kind of scary at first. After that I started feeling sick um, I think I got a fever the first day and I slept for like 16 hours straight. Then from there I got really bad body aches um, but it was never anything serious where I couldn’t breathe. It was like my lungs were a little bit affected cause it was harder for me to breathe but it was never that serious. 
MP: Yeah. Um, did it affect you like…money wise um or anything like that?
MAP: Um, it did affect me money wise because I couldn’t go to work for two weeks so, I didn’t…. I didn’t get a whole paycheck or I get paid weekly so I didn’t get two paychecks and right after I got better I had to start working already and my bills were coming up so I was a little bit behind.  
MP: Did you think you would ever be infected with Covid?
MAP: To be honest, I thought I wouldn’t have gotten infected. I always thought I had a good immune system, like I hardly go to the doctor. I’ve never gone to a hospital, I hardly ever get sick so when I got it I was really surprised that, I mean I just never thought I would get it.
MP: Are you planning to get vaccinated?
MAP: I’m actually still debating whether I should get vaccinated or not. Everybody is recommending us too and umm they’re saying that it’s actually helping people have less severe symptoms but I feel like the vaccine was created too quickly and we still have to see the long term effects of it. People are saying that nothing has happened to them. But I’m talking about like three… three to four years from now like what’s gonna happen to those people, is there gonna be curtain things that they’re gonna be affected with. Maybe like having a kid, or maybe their kids are gonna be affected with it, or something like that. So, I’m still debating whether I should do it or not. But for now, I think I’m not gonna get vaccinated.
MP: After you got Covid, did you have any like effects?
MAP: I actually did have effects like two days I started feeling better, I started getting itchy from like my thighs and arms. I didn’t know what it was so I went to the doctors and they had to test a lot of things but they really didn’t come back with anything. They said that I was fine, I didn’t have any allergies, or I wasn’t allergic to anything. But even to this day certain weather, like when it’s humid, I get really itchy and I get really big bumps on my arms, neck, chest, and my thighs. It gets really annoying cause I could be out. It happens randomly for example, I was at the OC Fair last time and um I didn’t take my allergy pills and I started getting my allergies and I just felt really uncomfortable, my body was itchy, I just kept scratching and every time I scratch myself um, like I leave red marks on myself. The doctor said it’s called derma.. derma….. Dermata..dermatographism, or something like that but yeah I have to drink medication for that now. So it’s like super annoying cause it happens randomly and it’s really uncomfortable so I did get affected after Covid.
MP: Do you think these bumps on your skin would get worse over time?
MAP: I think not really. Actually when I first started getting them, they would come out the worst. My hands would get swollen and I would be covered in them like throughout my whole body but now that I drink..now that I take allergy pills, I’m able to control them a little bit more. No, they still come out but not as bad as before. So, I think they are getting better but yeah they’re still happening about the same as when it first started. 
MP: Do you have any advice for people who are concerned about the virus or anything like that. 
MAP: I think if you take care of yourself, you wear your mask, wash your hands, and you just clean around wherever you touch, you should be good. Also I know I didn’t wanna get vaccinated. I don’t wanna get vaccinated because of my allergies and I don’t know how I’m gonna react but for people who haven’t gotten Covid, they should get vaccinated. I think if the statistics are showing that they are actually helping you have less severe symptoms or actually preventing you from getting the virus overall. I think you should get vaccinated but if not then you guys should get tested weekly and have good sanitation, wash your hands, and just wear your mask. Also try to avoid places where it’s super crowded and if you guys are gonna go to places that are crowded or there’s a lot of people try to be extra careful and try not to be close to people. If you are close to people just wear your mask.