‘Felt like something hit me with a frying pan:’Chicago actor describes coping with COVID-19


CHICAGO — Chicago actor Mitchel Fain is one of the hundreds of in Cook County battling COVID-19.

He described the virus as the worst flu he’s ever had.

It hit him hard, about two weeks ago and he said he’s just starting to feel better.

“I was wrecked,” he said. “It felt like something hit me with a frying pan.”

Fain was in Florida with friends a few weeks ago when someone in the group got sick.

While they chalked it up to the flu, Fain decided it was time to head home.

“I decided it’d be best if I got back to Chicago because things started to get panicky in the world and I thought I should probably be home,” he said.

He flew back on a half-empty flight, Monday, March 16.

Fain said the second he stepped off the plane, it hit him.

“I had fevers and that was concerning,” he said. “I did not have respiratory anxiety which I’m grateful for, but the big, huge effect on me was fatigue.”

The next day, his doctor sent him to Howard Brown Health to get tested.

Fain obsessed over the results for 10 days which eventually came back positive.

But he says in hindsight, the paranoia was counterproductive.

“Please everybody stop stressing about whether or not you get tested, it’s not important,” he said. “The important part is to self-isolate, stay the bleep home, and monitor your symptoms.”

Fain had a temperature between 100 and 102 degrees for 10 days straight, along with a consistent dry cough.

But now two weeks later, he said he’s feeling much better.

“Right now I feel optimistic,” he said. “I feel like I’m on the mend. I know that I have a good 7-10 days of isolation, not seeing anyone, left in me.”

While the self-isolation hasn’t been easy, it’s important. He is encouraging others to do the same, and most of all, take this seriously.

“We haven’t seen the worst of it here yet,” he said. “We are going up the curve here in Illinois. We’re going to get slammed and we’re going to get slammed soon.”

Fain gives his friends and family a lot of credit. He said having a strong support system is key to recovery.


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