•How She Lost 2 Friends To COVID-19
Her real name is Mrs. Ajenise Oduborisa Basirat, but many call her Asabi Olorisa. This woman who lives in the US recently lost many of her close friends to Covid-19.
She is an actress. The screen diva didn’t only lose 8 of her friends in the United States, she also had a close shave with Covid-19 as well. Despite the ugly experience, she has been brave about it all.
How did she survive the deadly viral disease, which claimed the lives of 8 of her friends? What did she use? How did she contract the deadly disease even after wearing up to 5 gloves and 2 facemasks? What is her advice for those battling this disease? City people Assistant Society Editor, ABIOLA ORISILE recently had an interview with her during which she spoke extensively on how she almost lost her life. Below are excerpts of the interview.
Are you one of the survivors of Covid-19?
Yes I am, I am one of the survivors of Covid-19.
How did you find out that you had contracted Covid-19?
Well, I worked in the department of health in the United States in the Richmond University Hospital. I used to work there as a blood bank staff. So untill April, when I lost so many of my colleagues to the virus then I decided to leave the job at the hospital. So I started doing visiting work, that is going to people’s houses to take care of them one on one. That started in August I think, but I got infected through one of our patients. I don’t even know how that happened because I was always extra careful. I use two to three masks, wear extra hand gloves, and I don’t eat out, I cook my food. I’m also the type that drinks hot water, I don’t drink room temperature water. I have been drinking hot water for the past 20 years. So I don’t know how I got infected. Even when handling blood, I wear enough gloves up to 5 at times so there is no how it would get to me.
There is no how you would be passionate about the job you do, that the job will not do you if you care so much about the job. If you work in the health care department in the US and you don’t get infected with either mild or severe virus, then you don’t have a passion for the job. I tried my best to avoid it. I take herbs and people know me on social media that I’m a female herbalist (Iya Alagbo) but I got infected. I don’t cough, I barely have temperature, headaches and I’m not hypertensive. My blood pressure is always low and I don’t have any illness till I started sneezing. I sneezed for 3 days and went back to work. But the day I was told that my client tested positive to Covid-19, it was on a Wednesday. From work, I drove myself down to the community health center to run a test. I was on the queue for over 3 hours. When I got inside, they checked my blood pressure and it’s 145/84 but I said it was not possible. They swiped my nose to go run a test. They came back and said that I was positive. I was so weak from head to toe. I was as light as an empty can. I didn’t know what to say. I got myself together and I came out and kept on telling myself that this result is not for me.
So I went home, took a warm shower and called a close colleague of mine. She once mentioned coconut water to me and I already had the (abere) seed. So I will mix that together and drink it. Very early the next morning, I drove down to her house, she had already broken the coconut and extracted the water in a bottle and she bought the ungrounded Abiri seed as well. I drank part of her own twice and then came home and soaked mine for about 8 hours and then I drank it all through the night. I called the hospital and told them my results and that I needed to quarantine myself. The hospital started monitoring me during the quarantine.
They kept checking me for symptoms but I didn’t have any. Everything was normal. I kept taking my herb mixture and I cooked pineapple and lemon and garlic and apple cider but I couldn’t eat. I went to the toilet twice a day to empty my bowels. I also pee a lot because I drink a lot of water. I kept on checking my vital signs and kept on believing in God. I kept on telling God that 80% of the money I make is used to help others while the remaining is what I manage for myself. So for that reason, he should save my life because I still have to help other people. I couldn’t go anywhere and I was just laying on my bed and was wondering how I got it. I don’t visit and people don’t visit me. No parties and I was extra careful. I couldn’t tell my son that lives in England. He would call and call but I would not pick. If he should hear my voice, he would know that something is wrong so I only text him and tell him I’m busy at work. I would say I’m fine if he asks me if I’m fine. But my baby sister that was in Dublin knew and was always calling me. When he eventually found out, he said he noticed that my sister that doesn’t call him often started to do so And she kept on asking him if he is hearing from me. I didn’t know she wàs doing that. She will call and tell me she has heard from him and that he is fine and not panicking. I told my niece and adopted daughter in Nigeria. My niece was close to me and she was almost scared to death. I only told her to be praying for me. The thing is I don’t take western medicines. I was born and brought up with herbs. I’m Asthmatic, the only thing I bring to Nigeria with me is just like 4 to 5 pumps of the inhaler and when I see someone that needs it, I give it to them. I bring it to Nigeria because of the dust. I always close my nose even before the Covid 19. I kept on referencing God for all he had put in me for humanity.
Even before the second 14 days quarantine, I have one cleric, they call him Alfa Adeoti, he is one of the iconic legends of our movie industry. We were very close with his wife. They would pray and recite the Quran over me. I also have another person, the Chairman of Orire Theater Art Organization, Basorun Olusegun Kamala. Akure too will call me and pray for me .And my sister too will call and pray. So I got prayer and divine grace. When you do good, you will get good as long you don’t do it for the world to see. God is seeing you. At the time of need he will help you and this is the time to be referencing God for what he has given us to carry. God will not forsake you. He didn’t say you will not face challenges but he will be with you all through then you will overcome that problem because what can’t make you, can’t destroy you. So I went back and did the test about three times and they came back negative. Although I haven’t gone back to work but I’m 100% okay. The remaining thing is to get my full diet back. I have been on purely organic food and it has been sustaining me.
How did you survive it?
I survived with the grace of God because I can’t say that its the herbs i took or by my power or might. It is by the grace of God and the prayer people were praying for me. The first thing that made me survive was my faith and assurance in God that immediately they pronounced it, I disclaimed it. I said I am not positive, it’s not for me and that’s it and throughout my time in quarantine I did not shake or change my mind. I did not say that God, am I going to die? Are you going to answer me? Because I know that the moment I said it out that this result is not for me, then God has answered and stamped it. So I stand on that Authority and I held on to it and it worked for me.
Did you use alternative methods?
Like I said earlier, I don’t use foreign medications. I use mostly herbal drugs. My friends know me, that I don’t eat junks such as burgers, some organs and the likes. That is because right from 20 to 30 years of age, lots of people are prone to health challenges like high blood pressure. I was told that an 18-year-old boy had high blood pressure in Nigeria. So that is why we need to watch what we eat in our family.
I used to have a particular program on Instagram and Facebook tagged All about our health. The only thing discussed there is about alternative herbs. I don’t take foreign medications because the moment you miss a medication you have been giving, one will die and that is what killed most of the rich men who went off their medications and their deaths were tagged to Covid-19. I’m very sure that there is no Covid-19 in Nigeria. Our government is just using it to extort money from WHO and the US government.
How many poor people have come out to say that their family died of Covid-19? Those that were brought up with dirty water and their immune system is used to them eating unhealthy food didn’t report any case of coronavirus in their family. But most people when they make some money, they don’t believe in the local herbs anymore, they travel abroad for medical check-ups and treatments but what they don’t know is that the foreigners they are going to meet also have a health issue like kidney problems, cancer, heart problem and some worse underlying illness. Most of those doctors can’t heal themselves so they can not heal you. So what they do is to manage the person by putting the person on some medications but the moment the person misses one, it becomes fatal.
Those rich men that died all went for treatments abroad and some were given 3 months appointments, some were given 6 months but during the global lockdown, people could not move from one country to another. Even our neighbors in Canada couldn’t come into the country. So most of these rich men couldn’t get their medications. Even the doctors are occupied with treating their families and friends who have the deadly disease. So that is what is killing them in Nigeria but here, they have underlying illnesses and the weather is also not helping matters because it’s conducive for the virus, unlike Nigeria’s climate that is very harsh to the virus. The virus can’t survive in Nigeria. So there is no Covid-19, the government is just extorting money from the UN and the WHO. May God not allow me to see an illness that would make me to be on medications. I would always be taking herbs and that is what I used for my Covid-19, with the divine grace of God and prayers from people.
What came to your mind while battling covid-19?
Well, what was on my mind was that when there is a negative result of anything, as long as you have faith that impossibility can be turned to possibility, your negativity can be turned to positivity gloriously. Like In the case of my Covid-19 test, they said it was positive but I said it was negative. Immediately they brought the results, I told God that No, it’s not for me. So when I got out of the hospital with the test results, I wanted to tear it up but I decided not to because there wouldn’t be proof of testimony if I tear the results.
I kept on rejecting the results and God stamped it for me. It is your faith when you don’t allow your faith to shake when you know the God you are serving. People say that they are serving God but I’m not serving him, he is serving me. I’m not protecting God or feeding him or giving him money but he is the one doing all of that for me in my life and my children. So the only thing I can do for him is to be praising him, worshipping him and be generous to humanity.
Did you lose 8 of your friends to covid-19?
Yes, I did lose 8 of my friends to Covid-19. They all worked in the health sector. I knew most of them from Maryland where I was living before. It was a painful loss. They say that it’s what someone knows how to eat that kills the person but God didn’t let my case be so. It was the mercy of God that we received.
In April when I left the hospital I worked, there was a friend of mine who was from Liberia. There was a time we worked for 5 good days without going home. What some of my fellow workers did when things were getting tensed in the hospital floor was to lie to the hospital saying that they had symptoms of the coronavirus and the hospital will ask them to quarantine at home. But just because they pay us more per hour, we decide to do overtime and stay but after five days , we had to go home. But there was a time that someone called in sick and they needed someone to replace her. The Liberian girl stayed while I went home. I didn’t go to work the next day, but the third day I went, I heard she had been affected with the virus. She had been stressed out without rest and she got infected. She died within 3 days of being hospitalized. So most of those people that have been unfortunate had underlying health conditions that they control at home like diabetes, high blood pressure which is very common etc. So because of money they overwork and stress themselves which they ought not to.
What came to your mind when you were battling covid-19?
What came to my mind then was the fact that I knew I was going to survive it. I stood on that faith and I didn’t shake. I didn’t allow it to shake my faith. I didn’t ask if God would heal me because I had already told him that I would survive it. So the moment I told him, I knew he has answered me and that was it.
What is your advice for those battling Covid-19?
My advice is that they must have faith, rebuke and renounce that result that It’s not for them and they know that whatever mediation they are on, you must have the belief that God has answered you. Even if it’s not materializing immediately, just have faith that God is at work. Herbs are better. Don’t drink warm water, take hot water. Check your blood pressure for abnormalities. You can use pineapple scales, a little ginger and lemon and continue to drink it as your water. If you have high blood pressure, add lots of garlic. Then Abere seed, you don’t need to grind it but people do because of its foul smell. You can soak it with coconut water, wait for 24hrs then start drinking. Refill if the coconut water is finishing. Stay indoors, wear your face mask, wash your hands regularly, drink hot water. Don’t panic, after your 14 days of quarantine, go retake your test and I’m sure you will test negative if you have the faith.