How Many People Are Left Who Haven’t Had Covid-19?
After avoiding Covid-19 for more than two years — first by isolating and masking, then getting vaxxed and masking, then by getting boosted and moving on with my life — I finally contracted Covid-19 last June. About a month after that, the President of the United States got Covid, and a study estimated that, by that point, 82 percent of Americans had contracted Covid-19. We’ve gone through more peaks and valleys since then — and it’s totally understandable, even sane, if you’ve stopped paying attention to case rates — and according to The New York Times Covid Tracker, we’ve had an average of 42,000 new cases per day over the last week. There is reason to believe that number is low: I personally know several people who have tested positive over the last fortnight and not only didn’t report to any sort of health authority that they were positive, they weren’t even sure how to, or if they were supposed to.
Actually, I really know two of those people: They’re my parents. Up until Thanksgiving weekend, neither of them had ever had Covid-19. (As far as they knew.) But this week, their number came up. Now, my parents are both in their early 70s, and they’re both healthy, active and fully vaccinated: I feel very fortunate that they were only sick for a couple of days and are already on the mend: My dad now feels close to 100 percent and is mostly annoyed that he keeps testing positive. But still: They tested positive. It’s always scary when someone you love tests positive.
And among the people closest to me — my wife, my two sons and my parents, all of whom live in the same town — they are nearly the only people left. My wife and younger son Wynn had Covid-19 in December 2020, before they had access to a vaccine, the scariest time. I had it in June 2022. My parents have now had it. Only my older son William, who just turned 11, has skated by. And even that’s a little bit of a guess: We haven’t entirely ruled out the possibility that his mother and brother may have gotten it from an-unsymptomatic him in the first place, two years ago.
Like most people, I’ve done what I can to keep myself and the people I care about safe during the now-nearly-three-years-long pandemic. Also like most people, I’ve become…