The global pandemic has touched us all.

If you or someone you love is suffering from COVID-19, know that you are not alone. These are unprecedented times, and nearly four weeks into this national crisis, it’s already clear that our community has been disproportionately affected and the numbers of those infected by or affected by the virus will continue to rise.

You may know someone who is battling the illness, or you may be sick or recovering yourself. It’s important that even during these most difficult times we tell and share our stories and use them to inspire each other to stay positive and not to give up hope.

A month ago, ESSENCE Chief Content and Creative Officer MoAna Luu was diagnosed with COVID-19. “I would never have imagined in my life that I would be one of the sick,” says Luu. “What’s hard about this disease is that you never know when it’s ending.” Luu was extremely ill for three weeks as she self-isolated away from her husband and son at home and fought to recover from the disease.

“I was scared to not make it, and I was scared to not see my son again,” Luu shared, emphasizing that she chose to wait to speak out about her experience until she was confident that she was fully recovering and in the clear. “I’m grateful today that I’m still breathing…I’m still living,” says Luu. “More than ever, we need to be a community….be strong together and to support the people around us.”

Watch Luu recount her experience and share her message of hope for others affected by the virus above.

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