Yay… We don’t have COVID-19… or do we? UPDATE


“Our doctor and our doctor friends all agree that the test for COVID-19, especially early on in the illness, is very likely to yield false negatives. So, although our daughter tested negative…”

First—it’s great to hear from so many of you via phone, email, and social media checking in on us and sending positive energy. Thanks so much again to all of you, and keep it coming!

An interim update on our COVID-19 situation

Our oldest daughter’s test results from last Friday came back NEGATIVE. And, she has begun to recover her sense of taste after three days. That’s good news!

Still, we are going back in to see the doctor this Friday to have her and the whole family tested for COVID-19 and for antibodies.


A negative test result means nothing.

Our doctor and our doctor friends all agree that the test for COVID-19, especially early on in the illness, is very likely to yield false negatives. So, although our daughter tested negative, we have been told to act as though she’s positive.

Which is fine… except for the whole “science” thing. A lab test for infection with a virus isn’t (or shouldn’t be) like the Pepsi Challenge. It’s not supposed to be subjective, maybe “yes”, maybe “no”… There is supposed to be science behind this thing, right?

Well, I’ve done the research—there are two types of diagnostic tests: antigen test and molecular tests. They have somewhat different levels of reliability. Our daughter had the molecular test, which is the more reliable of the two.

But, we got the same caveat from the physicians as to both tests—a negative result does not mean that you are in the clear, especially in the face of other symptoms.

The COVID-19 numbers are wrong (and not just China’s).

We have been told to act as though our daughter is positive for COVID-19, but as far as the “official count” goes, she is a negative. How many more people are there out there that show up in the data as negative, but are being told to act as though they are positive? And are they all behaving as though they are positive, or are they relying on the “negative” result to resume life as usual?

Living with the bug in the house.

When I was young, I was a bit of a hypochondriac. From 1985-87, I believed I had a brain tumor. I had read somewhere that a symptom of brain tumors was smelling or tasting things that aren’t there (this is a thing). While I later learned that I simply have an acute sense of smell, at the time I didn’t know that. So, when I would ask, “Do you smell cut grass?” “Do you smell sulphur?” “Do you smell something burnt?” the olfactorily challenged around me would usually reply, “No.” Hence, my self-diagnosis of brain tumor.

As I got older, I overcame the hypochondria (the brain tumor resolved on its own). But, having our daughter upstairs with “anosmia”—loss of sense of smell/taste—I have been excessively “self-assessing.”

Since Friday, I “may” have experienced:

  • headache
  • sniffles
  • sinus drainage
  • sneezed three times (one involved cut grass so probably not symptomatic)
  • coughed once—(pretty sure this was due to mis-swallowing water)
  • leg pain (this was after running four miles with intervals interspersed)
  • I felt sleepy yesterday afternoon at around 3:15 p.m.—fatigue?
  • and maybe shortness of breath…

The trickiest symptom for me to assess is lung capacity—shortness of breath. You know how breathing is an autonomic body function? You do it without thinking about it. But, if you think about it, then you feel yourself doing it? Well, I’ve been doing that. When I think about it, I think maybe I am not breathing normally. But, if I don’t think about it… no problem. Being overly conscious of your breathing is apparently a thing too.

So “shortness of breath?” Probably not. The true test for me is that I can still run as far and as fast as before. And I sleep the same as before. Probably nothing there.

Everyone is still fine.

My hypochondria aside, everyone else is doing great. No one reports anything out of the ordinary. And our oldest is taking her temperature every two hours—no fever.

But, one of our dogs is acting kind of strange. I did read early on about animals getting COVID-19. So, I’m doing more research now as this appears to be a real thing too… crap…


  1. Dipti says:

    Did you get antibody results? Your story is very helpful.

    • JK says:

      We did. I will be posting an update shortly, but the short version is that everyone came up negative. Thanks for asking!

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