With the Omicron variant of COVID 19 now present in Australia, the number of local cases has surged. In a lot of the recent cases, the people who were fully vaccinated only had mild effects of the virus and did not require hospitalisation.  They only needed to isolate in their own homes.

One of these cases was the whole Villareal family from the western area of Sydney.  The family is quite well known in the Fil-Aus community through their involvement in community events.  The popular only daughter of Jhigs and Theresa, is none other than Elysa V who we featured in last issue of The Australian Filipina. The rest of the brood is comprised of Michael, and twin brothers Jericho and Jordan.

We are glad of Theresa’s willingness to share their ordeal and recovery from the virus, with the aim of sending the message that the risks of the virus cannot be taken for granted and share what saved them from getting seriously ill when they contracted the virus.

Below is the candid sharing by Theresa through her journal.


DAY 1 – Jan 12

On Tuesday night, January 11, I only had a bit of a cough all night.  But this was followed by body ache, fever and chills in the early morning of Wed Jan 12. I thought it's just because I got rained on for 2 mornings going to work. I never thought of catching Covid at all. So I took 2 Panadol, felt better and went to work because we're short of staff.  But within an hour at work, my body ache became a lot worse and I felt like fainting, so i told my Boss and he sent me home, but advised me to get a Covid Test done immediately. Rapid Antigen Tests were sold out everywhere, coz Hubby went to so may Chemists, but no luck.  I had my test done at the Mt Druitt Pop Up Clinic and to this day I still haven't received my result from them ... I went straight home and immediately isolated from my family .

DAY 2 - Thursday, Jan 13

Our GP immediately gave Hubby Edwin “Jiggs” his booster shot, coz with all my symptoms he already suspected Covid. I was truly more worried for my Hubby than myself, but my fear disappearsed every time I prayed to God and Jesus .. I also bought a Pulse Oximeter to monitor my oxygen and pulse rate. The only medication recommended are Panadol and Cough Syrup "Chesty" when phlegmy.

My temperature was up and down; I had chills, sore throat, body ache, headache, runny nose, you name it the lot!!!...but my appetite never left me, hahaha ...Thanks so much to my Hubby for cooking yummy foods for me and being my efficient room boy He even tried to entertain me sweetly and video called to have our meals together, as isolating gets a bit lonely . I also did steam every night before shower with Rock Seasalt for 8 minutes, which helped a lot with my congestion and also used a Nasal Spray

DAY 3 - Fri, Jan14

 I couldn't sleep all night with fever, chills and bad cough, so painful. My voice was so husky/croaky from the cough pain.  Then Elysa woke up at around 4am with a fever of 38.6 degrees. She had chills, nausea, body ache, headache, sore throat, cough, the lot!!!...It was sudden, coz she worked the Thurs night shift and was ok (too worried to even take pics) ...apparently the girl she worked with a week ago tested positive for COVID and her whole family.  So i immediately got Elysa and Jiggs to get a COVID Test at the Mt Druitt Pop Up Clinic, from which we never got a result back to this day.

I had to remove my nail polish just off one finger nail, as apparently the Oximeter won't give an accurate reading.  My appetite stayed with me, so lamon pa more

DAY 4 - Saturday, January 15

Just eat, eat, eat the COVID away, hahaha ...just eat a lot, so your body will have the energy to fight it off.

Hubby started getting symptoms, but very mild cough only and wasn't frequent, thank God and Jesus ...He also only had a mild body ache, but could be from the booster, because he was feeling a bit weak and had pain/itch at the injection site on his arm. Mic also woke up with a mild headache and very mild cough that also wasn't frequent, so started to take Panadol and Cough Syrup. 

Elysa was still feeling all the bad symptoms especially the fever, cough and chest pain ...i was getting better, but still had a bad cough, chest pain and congestion, especially in the early mornings...so our GP recommended Doru-Tuss dry cough triple strength and that amazingly instantly stopped our cough ...I got worried at times, but my faith and trust in God and Jesus is a lot stronger. My fears suddenly disappeared and I felt at peace every time our family prayed or I personally talked to God and Jesus.

DAY 5 - Sunday, January 16

Since Mine, Hubby and Elysa's Covid Test Results from Mt Druitt Popup Clinic never came back at all, my Boss suggested we get another test done somewhere else. So we decided to take our whole family to Emerton Drive Thru at 1pm...we received our results by 8pm same day, sadly all of us were Positive .

We were thankful that Jericho and Jordan were asymptomatic, so we thought ...the only good thing was we didn't have to isolate alone anymore. That night we prayed like we always do as a family on a Sunday night, but poured our hearts out to God and Jesus even more and I said to them, I know this happened to our family for a good reason, but I am very confident that They will heal us like always and healed us. They sure did, rapidly ...T hen we just ate some more

DAY 6 - Monday, January 17

 Jordan and Jericho suddenly had high fever, most especially Jordan and phlegmy cough The symptoms were not gradual; they were sudden and unexpected - you're fine today, but suddenly very sick the next day . Elysa and Mic were making fun of Jordan, because  him and Jericho we thought were "asymptomatic" NOT.

But my Cook Hubby eh Sakalam talaga, Day2 only of his symptoms, but he has already recovered and was cooking again ...He still had a bit of cough here and there, but he was very energetic. The Booster definitely helped him a lot, because he was given it just before his symptoms started. Definitely it gave him extra protection ...Hubby and I were actually due for our Booster that Saturday, January 15, but naunahan kami ni COVID.

I actually lost my sense of taste; believe it or not, that part being very sad is an understatement . I was more worried for my loss of taste, because I have never experienced that in my entire life, hahaha. When I get sick, I never ever lose my appetite nor my sense of taste since birth.  All the yummy food tasted very salty ...hindi ako mapakali haha ...but by that same night, I was surprised it was backkk!!!...When I bit into the Ensaymada, it tasted sooo delishhh ...I was very thankful

DAY 7 - Tues, Jan 18

 Jordan and Jericho had the highest fever, both 39.4 deg (no pics, as I panicked). I gave them Panadol, Cough Syrup and Hubby wiped them with an icy face towel then put an icepack on their foreheads.  About an hour later, their fever went down . I told them to keep eating so they can get better quickly and eat they did.

We ran out of Panadol and couldn't go out, with the fine here being  $11K and possible  6 months in jail.  Not only that, but for the safety of others we must stay isolated for 7days. I ordered online at a chemist, but delivery is 2 to 4 days. I also ordered with our groceries, but they won't be delivered til Thursday. I ordered at another chemist with same day delivery, but advised me 3 hrs later that they sold out after accepting my order. But thanks a lot to my Kumareng Jocelyn for buying it for us and delivering at our gate with a bonus KFC haha

DAY 8 - Today Wed, Jan 19

 As fast as COVID hit our family, our GOD and JESUS has also healed us much faster!!!

My kids today are all happy again, recovering well and back to playing games again...Jericho insisted on washing the dishes already, such a good boy ...may pa Tiktok p c Ate Elysa . She tried going on the treadmill last night, but was wheezing so she stopped. My chest is still a bit painful from all the coughing, but other than that I feel a lot better...imagine people with underlying conditions and/or unvaccinated.

From our experience, COVID will hit you the hardest in the first 3 to 4 days. That's when all the symptoms will show and you will be able to realise then what you're up against. The symptoms we got were very similar to the side effects of the vaccine...makes sense, coz the vaccine was supposed to mimic Covid, so that our immune system will be already familiar with it once the real virus hits us.

It definitely worked for our family...so once you get symptoms, talk to your GP immediately and I guarantee you, they will advise you to just take Panadol immediately for fever/pain and also cough syrup, dry or an instant cough reliever...plus drink plenty of water, steam with Rock Seasalt, sleep/rest and eat like there is no tomorrow . Most of all pray together, talk to God and Jesus daily.

So grateful that we are all now recovering really well and are just now waiting for Sunday Jan 23 when we are due for our PCR again for work purposes . Our family is now enjoying spending time together and making the most of this isolation. We also truly have to thank God for the vaccinations and boosters, because if we weren't fully vaccinated especially Hubby without the booster, I know for a fact that it would have been worse and could have been life threatening for all of us, most especially for him. It doesn't matter how careful we are, because we were wearing a mask all the time, especially at work, but still got it somehow.  So I highly recommend to be vaccinated, although it's still your decision. But i tell you, it was quite a struggle already with us being fully vaccinated, so I just can't imagine if we weren't. 

God blesses us with amazing Researchers/Doctors/Health Professionals and guides them to create medicines to save us, so believe in God and Science, it may save your life, like I truly believe it definitely saved ours ...now I know why our family experienced Covid, because He wants us to share awareness


The Happy Villareal Bunch

Theresa is 48 years old and works at a big jewellery shop while her husband Edwin “Jiggs” is  52 years old.  Jiggs used to work in a casino and big hotel due to his lung condition is on a Disability Allowance.

Elysa 23yo, who just graduated Bachelor of Music is a prolific singer-songwriter.  She works at a clothes shop on part time basis to fund her original music production/releases and music videos. She hopes to be a pop singer and make a hit with her original songs.

Michael 18yo works as a casual at a department store.  He just graduated Yr12 with first place in Music and will also be studying Bachelor of Music at Western Sydney University this March, as he hopes to produce music soundtracks for anime movies.

Twin brothers Jericho and Jordan 13yo, just graduated Yr 6 as Vice Captain and School Captain respectively and will be in high school next year. They are not sure yet what they want to be, but Jericho loves to play the drums and Jordan the Guitar and Keyboard.


The Australian Filipina wishes the Villareal family complete recovery from their COVID ordeal and thanks Theresa for her honest sharing and advice to our readers on how to minimise the risk of contracting the virus by getting vaccinated and following the health protocols diligently, and maintaining well-being through their Faith. 

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