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This Mom Did Not Need A COVID-19 Test To Realize All 12 Family Members Had The Virus
PHOTO BY Courtesy of Fivemay Huervas
  • There are 12 people in our household — six grown-ups (my husband and I, plus three kasambahays and an admin assistant) as well as our six children ages 10, 9, 8, 4, 3, and 1. All of us experienced COVID-19 symptoms within two weeks.

    My husband was the last to get sick, and through his positive test, we realized all of us could have been battling the virus.

    Before you go on, please do not treat this as medical advice on COVID-19 treatment — medical advice is always best. I am not a medical professional. I did my own research, consulted with medical professionals online, and applied the treatments I believed could help with our illness at the time.

    How quickly COVID-19 spread

    Fivemay with her husband and six kids.
    PHOTO BY Courtesy of Fivemay Huervas

    It all started when one of our kasambahays went home to visit her family in the neighboring town. We live in Valencia City, Bukidnon. On August 14, 2021, three days after returning, she complained of malaise (discomfort, weakness) and fever.


    As a mom, I felt a bit nervous and alarmed. I quickly put her in isolation and prayed it was just the ordinary flu.

    Her fever subsided a couple of days later, but another of our kasambahays presented the same symptoms: headache, malaise, and fever. A day later, on my husband’s birthday, my youngest daughter, a year and 8 months old, also started feeling feverish.

    Our third kasambahay and our admin assistant complained of body malaise in the days that followed, while my eldest son (aged 10) also developed a fever. In addition, my 4-year-old daughter and 3-year-old son also experienced elevated body temperatures, while my 9-year-old son also had a fever.

    My children’s body temperatures were quick to go back to normal, but on August 21, I started feeling feverish. By August 23, my fever was gone, and I thought things would go back to normal. However, my 8-year-old daughter also developed a fever and sore throat.

    On the evening of August 26, my husband also felt feverish. He had an on-and-off fever for three days until he finally asked to be brought to an isolation facility and get tested for COVID-19.

    His results came back positive, and his X-ray also showed pneumonia. He stayed in the isolation center for more treatment, and my brother took care of him because I couldn’t leave our kids behind.

    Recovering from the virus

    Except for my husband, our household was not tested for COVID-19, but I operated on the assumption we were all infected. Since I had an intermittent dry cough and upper back pain, I consulted with a doctor online and was prescribed medicine and supplements.

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    We also started on homecare  to treat our symptoms, which included:

    Healthy eating

    We had fruits in the morning and vegetables for lunch and dinner. I juiced, blended, or sliced fruits and gave concentrate juice and supplements to our household, as vitamin C helps strengthen the immune system. It also helps in growth and tissue repair, especially during infections.

    Fivemay and her kids get some sunlight in their property in Bukidnon.
    PHOTO BY Courtesy of Fivemay Huervas

    Get some sunlight

    We had sun exposure for 10 minutes with a wet cloth on top of the head. Vitamin D helps boost our immune system, which can help us recover faster when sick.

    Get plenty of sleep

    Cellular repair happens when we are asleep. We sleep so our body can heal itself as much as possible.

    Steam inhalation

    I boiled tawa-tawa plants in a pot and did steam inhalation under a blanket for relief. We did this in the morning and in the afternoon. Then, I’d save a glass of the boiled water to drink after inhalation. (Read what experts think about steam inhalation or suob here)


    Body massage

    I used essential oils to massage my children. I used my homemade coconut oil with drops of lavender and eucalyptus. Our kasambahays also did the same to each other.


    I breastfed my youngest daughter more frequently than usual. I also hand-expressed my milk to give to the older children. Based on my own experience, I have seen how effective breast milk can be when my kids are sick.

    Battling with my guilt

    When our early treatment worked, I was confident that what we had was not COVID-19. But when I lost my sense of smell on my fifth day, that confidence was shaken. Whenever I heard my kids sneeze or cough, I felt like it was my fault.

    When my husband’s X-ray showed that his pneumonia progressed, I broke down. He was given more meds like remdesivir. Thankfully, as the days progressed, my husband’s condition improved.

    On September 13, my husband finally tested negative of COVID-19 and was sent home. It was a happy moment for all of us.

    Fivemay's husband was isolated in a public elementary school in Bukidnon.
    PHOTO BY Courtesy of Fivemay Huervas

    Lessons learned

    Early treatment is vital. As for any illness, it is better to treat any symptom at the onset. Consult with a doctor, and don’t wait for it to worsen before you pay attention and get treatment.

    Prevention is still the best. Support your immune system to have a high fighting chance against COVID-19.

    I offered all my struggles, fears, anxiety, guilt, and all my needs to God to take care of, and He did.

    Fivemay admits she had a hard time caring for her children when they all had COVID-19 symptoms.
    PHOTO BY Courtesy of Fivemay Huervas

    To this day, our family is working hard to boost our immune system. We agreed to change and keep a healthy lifestyle and be mindful of the food we eat. We continue to take vitamins, do grounding, exercise, and have sun exposure by walking barefoot outside the home every morning.


    And we are grateful for every day that we live and all the blessings we receive.

    A doctor shares homecare tips if you have mild to severe COVID-19 symptoms here. Read why you should get the COVID-19 vaccine here.

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