A Durbanville couple holidaying in the Lowveld never dreamed it would turn into a fight for survival after one of them ended up in hospital for three months battling Covid-19.
Magda de Leeuw, 65, spent 109 days in Mediclinic Nelspruit.
She and her husband, Anton, had left home in July to go caravanning in Swadini and Marloth Park. Magda started showing Covid-19 symptoms soon after their departure, and was admitted to hospital on 1 August.
At that time, Anton remained at Chimp Eden to be close to Magda.
“That was all I needed,” he told Lowvelder.
Magda was discharged from hospital on 17 November, to the sound of joyful songs and cheers from the staff. A long road to recovery now awaits her at M-Care.
“I do not know if it would have gone as well had I been in another place. The treatment, everyone’s attitude; it all made a big difference and helped me to stay calm and collected.
“And of course, my husband being with me every day. I think he wore out the caravan floor, praying.”
Both Magda and Anton had been vaccinated. But when they started feeling ill during their trip, Anton thought it wise for them to be tested.
Magda’s battle was a tough one for him too.
“But as I always say, she looked after me for 45 years, so I can look after her for a couple of years.”
Magda spent 101 of the 109 days in intensive care, and had to celebrate her birthday on 9 September in hospital, too.
She does not remember much of her birthday this year, except that she received a balloon.
A memory fresh in her mind was the first drops of water she was able to drink.
“My word, it was like manna from heaven. It was so good!”
The next milestone is on 15 December. By then, she should be finished with her rehabilitation, and if all goes well, the couple should be back home in time for Christmas.
“Our poor sausage dog will probably not even recognise us when we get home!”
To anyone who has to undergo the same journey, Magda has this message: “Trust in God. God is good.”
Edited by Nica Richards