As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to grow, stars are speaking out about their own personal experiences with the disease. Now in his recovery, Bachelor alum Colton Underwood revealed the scariest part of having coronavirus in a recent interview with Entertainment Tonight. The former Bachelor tested positive on March 19 and began his recuperation process on the third floor of his girlfriend Cassie Randolph's family home. And while none of the symptoms were exactly enjoyable, for Colton the fear of COVID-19 really started to sink in after waking up at 4 a.m. feeling unable to breathe.
"I think, for me, the scariest part is actually feeling yourself breathe. We take it for granted, but everyday we just breathe naturally and we don't think about breathing in and breathing out. I had to make sure every single breath counted," Colton said. "I sort of had to re-teach myself how to breathe differently. It was the strangest feeling." He continued, saying that his trouble breathing made him feel like "I had access to only 20 percent of my lungs."
Beyond the physical aspects of the virus, the mental aspect is also frightening. Specifically, Colton said the worry of passing the virus to Cassie and her family, with whom he had been social distancing, weighed on him. "I didn't know if they were going to be getting it," he stated. "I was scared for them. I was scared for myself. I think the scariest part was the unknown."
Then, of course, there's the added fear that the virus did permanent damage to his body or, even worse, that he could become infected again. "Nobody knows what this thing does, how long it's going to last, if it has any permanent damage," Colton continued. "I mean, I don't know if I could get it again or if I could relapse. So, it's just a scary time right now and I think that's like the most frightening thing for everybody."
Young people may have thought they were safe from coronavirus, but Colton is a shining example of how even a healthy, young former athlete like himself aren't immune to its dangers, which makes social distancing all the more crucial.
If you think you’re showing symptoms of coronavirus, which include fever, shortness of breath, and cough, call your doctor before going to get tested. If you’re anxious about the virus’s spread in your community, visit the CDC or NHS 111 in the UK for up-to-date information and resources, or seek out mental health support. You can find all Bustle’s coverage of coronavirus here, and UK-specific updates on coronavirus here.