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Stockton nurse speaks out about her recovery from coronavirus

Angela Gomez-Aistrup believes she contracted the virus on the job at St. Joseph's Medical Center.

STOCKTON, Calif. — Angela Gomez-Aistrup, 46, is a self-described soccer mom, wife and registered nurse.

Now, she she can also add coronavirus statistic to her description. After waking up with what felt like "a sore throat," she said she didn't think anything of it.

That was at the start of a 12-hour nursing shift at St. Joseph's Medical Center in Stockton. It wasn't too long before things got worse for her. 

"My fever is high," Gomez-Aistrup said. "I had this excruciating massive headache that nothing will make it go away, body aches."

She got tested and went home later that day.

Gomez-Aistrup is a bedside nurse for cancer patients needing chemotherapy. She describes her symptoms as mild so far, including loss of taste and smell. But, she believes despite her best efforts, she contracted the virus on the job.

"I'm the lady with the Clorox Bleach wipes that wipes the whole cart down and I have hand sanitizer in my purse and in my car," Gomez-Aistrup said. "So, we were all wearing our masks."

While she doesn't work directly with coronavirus patients, many of her fellow nurses do and she says it's been overwhelming.

"It's sad. I feel like we were doing really well," Gomez-Aistrup said. "We had COVID [19] patients. We got down to like almost none, like one or two. And now we're back up in the hundreds."

Gomez-Aistrup fears her 15-year old daughter may have the virus, too. In March, her parents tested positive and have since recovered. Right now, she's self-quarantining at her parents home.

One of the reasons she wanted to speak out during her recovery is because of the stigma she believes is attached to nurses.

"You're at the hospital for 13 hours and you're wearing a mask and goggles," Gomez-Aistrup said. "You do your best."


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