BAY ST. LOUIS, Miss. (WLOX) - It’s been a long struggle for a New Orleans woman with connections to the Coast. She has officially recovered from COVID-19 but the ordeal is not yet over.
And it won’t be over for her parents in Bay St. Louis until they can reunite with her and their grandchildren once again.
Hope Brannon was feeling COVID-19 at its fullest on March 22, less than a week after she first felt symptoms.
It was on this day that she waited for hours to be tested.
“I had a lot of the classic symptoms," she said. “In fact, I pretty much had all of them.”
Fortunately, she began isolation immediately.
“I was fairly certain I had it. I was exposed at work and better than a dozen that I work with have tested positive now.”
She received the word she was positive 12 days later.
In fact, it was so long that she had already been cleared by her doctor to end her isolation, which lasted 14 days after first showing signs.
“When he said that I couldn’t spend time with my children, that was definitely the hardest - until March 30,” she said through tears. “So, that’s a lot of days, especially when you’re not feeling well to begin with.”
Her daughter, a student at LSU, is in Baton Rouge but Brannon had to be separated from her 16-year-old son, who lives in the house with her.
Communication was by telephone.
“Sometimes I talked him through how to make a meal. Isolation is a tough word and a tough process because it means that you have to go through the whole thing alone," she said.
That’s something that her parents, Mike and Rachael Ramsey of Bay St. Louis, are having a tough time dealing with.
“We miss her desperately, and she won’t let me come over because we are in the high-risk group,” Rachael said. “I miss my daughter more than I can tell you. I miss her so much, and she has had to go through this by herself.”
Frustration has set in.
“There’s no way we could go over and help her or even talk to her most of the time because she was ill,” Mike said. “She was sleeping and trying to recover.”
The Sunday before Hope became ill, the whole family gathered in New Orleans for a fundraiser.
“It was great to get us all together. It just doesn’t happen that often because the kids are so busy right now in their lives,” Rachael said. “So, it is a treat, but then you get punished by the fact that you don’t know when you’re going to see them again. Because right now, I don’t know when I’m going to see our grandchildren again.”
Brannon said she is now working from home with her federal agency job in New Orleans.