• Azer Bestavros

    Azer Bestavros is the inaugural Associate Provost for Computing & Data Sciences. A William Fairfield Warren Distinguished Professor and a College of Arts & Sciences professor of computer science, he was the founding director of BU’s Rafik B. Hariri Institute for Computing and Computational Science & Engineering. Profile

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There are 25 comments on My Battle with COVID-19: “A Harrowing Experience I Will Never Forget”

  1. Thanks be to God.
    Christ is risen.
    May He grant you and your blessed family health and strength always.

    Love,
    Fr. Yohanna

    1. Thank you for reaching out Lorraine! Somehow, this virus is making us go back to and rediscover the things that matter most and keep us going — our community of colleagues, friends, and family near and far!

  2. Thanks the Lord you are well dear Azer .. Christ is Risen .. Truely He is Risen
    Thank you so much for your sharing your tough battle in a detailed day by day description of the clinical presentation of COVID-19 , this is a great aid in the awareness of this novel mutating mysterious virus
    May the Lord God keeps you and protects you in the best health ever

    1. Thanks Erini. I, for one, can attest to the deceptive way in which this virus snuck up on me. Its symptoms are so different for different people (even in the same family), making it hard to pin down or even recognize early on — until it takes a hold of one’s body at which point it really shows its ugly face. God bless!

  3. So glad you and your family recovered. Very informative , a very worthwhile read !
    Interesting to note how symptoms evolved and how long they lasted. Seems they are very different for different people
    Stay well !

    1. Indeed! As I mentioned in an earlier comment, this is a “deceptive” virus. Its symptoms are so different for different people (even within one household), making it hard to pin down or recognize early on. Even worse, its elusive nature makes those who get it dismiss it as anything but COVID (as I did initially) until it takes a hold of one’s body at which point it really shows its ugly face.

  4. Thank you for sharing this most personal and dire experience for you and your family. I’m so glad you and your daughter are on the mend.

  5. Dear Azer,

    Thank God you and your family came out victorious and healthy. I agree with you, there is still much to do in the future.
    I enjoy reading your writings just as much as I did 16 years ago :)

  6. Wow, Azer- this was no joke and no small matter. Thank you for this sobering yet ultimately joyful account. Thank goodness that you all are well, and that while this horrible virus- while it did not exactly pass over your house- at least passed through and then on with no permanent damage save for data acquired and lessons learned, and shared. Thank you for that sharing. Be well, all of you.

    1. Thank you Les. I am indeed thankful and grateful that we weathered the COVID storm, and hopefully have come out of it stronger, if not physically then socially and communally. Beyond our family, I sure hope that this ends up being true for society and the world at large.

  7. Azer, thank you for the vulnerability to share your story. This is one of the most in-depth accounts I’ve read about what it’s like to have Covid-19. Speaking on behalf of not just myself but all of your friends at the Institute, we’re so glad you were able to put this awful virus behind you!

    1. Thank you Natalie! I am so lucky to have colleagues such as yourself and all those in my Hariri Institute family. Please be well and keep up the good work and most importantly the “can do” attitude. Be well one and all @ HIC!

  8. Christ is Risen! Indeed He is Risen!
    Thanks be to God that you have been victorious over this plague. May God grant you many more healthy and happy years with your family and leading our CDS efforts!

    1. What a delight to hear from you dearest Mary and Gary. Thank you so much for these most empowering of words. Alithos Anesti! I recall with fond memories our shared love of everything Mediterranean and our chat last Fall in NYC during the DAR event about my trip almost exactly one year ago to Cyprus where I visited St. Lazarus Church in Larnaca (some 40+ years after visiting it with my dad as a teenager). Somehow, I feel that making that “pilgrimage” was not an accident… Please take care and hope to see you soon.

  9. Azer, thank you for sharing, and we are so glad you are on the mend. My sister was diagnosed and went through many of the same symptoms as you, including the loss of sense of taste, but is pretty much symptom-free now. It’s very stressful. This is so close to home for so many of us.

  10. This is an important story. While we hear a lot about the very serious cases in ICUs, we also need to be aware of the suffering and worrying that’s going on for tens of thousands of people who struggle through the disease at home. My husband and I shared many of Azer’s experiences, and I am disclosing myself as the colleague described in the story who recommended the oximeter. I purchased my own oximeter when I became sick in early March, following a recommendation by my dear colleague Lei Guo. When Azer became sick, in addition to worrying about him and his family, I immediately counted the days between the start of my symptoms and our lunch meeting (5 days) and the start of his symptoms (28 days). It is natural to worry about who you might have infected. Azer’s anguish about having infected his own family members comes out very clearly in his story. I passed the disease to my husband, and that is painful. Hopefully nobody else, since I self-quarantined immediately. Please be careful so you do not get your loved ones sick! Azer’s warning not to take this disease lightly is another important message. I kept underestimating the disease myself, running out of breadth in my zoom meetings. By Easter, I felt better, although I still had no breadth to sing praise. Two months after I got sick, I am finally back to normal, and I am very thankful for all the help I had from colleagues, staff, and students during my struggles. Please take good care of yourselves!

  11. How can I thank you enough Margrit?! Your email to me (ALL CAPS and all) was like an “advance warning” to treat this virus as the worthy adversary it is. Your words about the importance of community support could not be more true. It really takes a village (and a lot of patience) to beat this virus. All I can say is thank you (now publicly) for being such a real trooper in raising awareness about the toll of this virus.

    On that count, I admit that I debated whether to entertain BU Today’s suggestion that I write up /share my personal experience with COVID. I am so glad they reached out to suggest it and I am so glad that at the end I decided to do it. At the end, to me, beyond the physical part of it, sharing the invisible mental and emotional toll that this virus is having on families (even with what is considered a mild case since I did not have to be hospitalized) was important. This is something that is largely not talked about in the media, but one that I believe will impact society for a long time.

  12. Dear Azer, this detailed accounting is so important to many of us that have been spared. Good story telling and I pray you and your family are now all safe and healthy.I will definitely look you up next time I am in Boston. Be safe, take care and god bless.

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