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Dealing With the Aftermath: One of the First Patients Dealing With Harassment

Posted at 11:13 PM, Jun 18, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-18 23:13:02-04

LANSING, Mich. — More than two millions Americans have now gotten sick with COVID-19. But for the thousands who have recovered they are facing a new kind of stigma and loneliness. Chris Conte introduces us to one woman who wants other coronavirus victims to know they aren't alone.

It is hard to imagine that surrounded by landscapes like this.any resident of Cohassett, Massachusetts would be struggling as much as Kelsea Hindley right now.

"I think a lot about the fear of the unknown."

As a high school french teacher, Kelsea had spent the begining of the year looking forward to a trip abroad with her students in February. Weeks before the U.S. locked down. She'd felt a little sick before leaving, but it kept getting worse. "I just felt this pain I’ve never felt before, it was muscular and all the way to the bones."

By the time Kelsea flew back to the U.S., news of the coronavirus was everywhere. Eventually she was diagnosed with the virus, the second person in her entire state.

People she’d never met in town took to social media. Concerned Kelsea had somehow spread the virus even though she was in quarantine - some said she should leave town. "My anxiety level has never been that high in my life, i felt so bad, i felt like i had done something to people."

Months later, it's that kind of survivors guilt she wants people to understand.a sense of isolation that she and thousands of Americans who have had COVID are experiencing. "Unless you’ve been sick you don’t understand how it feels, it just feels extremely isolating I’ll tell you that."

Hesistant to tell her story at first this 28-year-old wants other COVID victims to know they aren't alone. "I want people to look at people like me and see we do get better and not just that but we go on with our lives. Don’t hold this against people just because they get sick."

As for life now, Kelsea is back to teaching and like the rest of us, cautiously moving forward into an uncertain future.

As more and more people get better i hope the general public doesn’t see this as a death threat.

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