Local coronavirus patient discusses guilt of unknowingly infecting other people

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. — One of the latest locals to test positive for coronavirus said he’s had it for about a week but didn’t know it, so he’s been walking around like normal until Wednesday when he got his test results back.

Robbie Schaefer is now one of more than 100 people in Shelby County to test positive for coronavirus.

He was at work Tuesday, so every one of his co-workers who came in contact with him will now also need to be tested.

Now, Schaefer is quarantined at home with his dog after testing positive for the coronavirus.

“Right now, I just kind of feel like I’ve been hit by a bus,” he said.

Schaefer said he began showing mild symptoms last week.

“I haven’t been able to smell in like a week,” he said.

He assumed the symptoms were from allergies, but when one of his friends tested positive for coronavirus, Schaefer decided to get tested himself.

“They stick a long q-tip up your nose, and it feels like it’s touching your brain,” he said.

He got the results back Wednesday and has been shut in his home ever since.

Even his husband has to keep his distance.

“We’re not supposed to be in the same room, so he’ll be on the couch, or I’ll be on the couch, and we’ll kind of go in a big circle around the house if we need to move,” Schaefer said.

His company, which he asked WREG not to name, has been allowing him to work remotely, but even his job can only do so much to distract him from the near-constant pain.

“It’s kind of harder to sit up and be able to focus because your body just hurts, and you’re tired,” he said.

He’s also wracked with guilt about who else he might have unknowingly exposed to the virus.

“What I thought was just allergies turned out to be coronavirus, and I’ve been walking around with it for a week just because I didn’t know to be on the lookout for those symptoms,” Schaefer said.

Schaefer compares having coronavirus to a bad case of the flu, but he realizes he has a very mild case of it.

He’s still awaiting his husband’s test results to see if he also tests positive, but right now, he said neither one of them are leaving the house.

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