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"For the last two and a half weeks, I felt like I was making a journey through the Underworld," the artist said

By Alexia Fernández
January 19, 2021 08:34 PM
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Sean McEnroe
Credit: Sean McEnroe/instagram

Sean McEnroe and his new wife Niamh should be basking in wedded bliss but are instead dealing with the health fallout after testing positive for coronavirus.

The artist son of Tatum O'Neal and John McEnroe shared a photo of himself and his wife Niamh on Instagram Monday and revealed they had both contracted COVID-19 in December —which was shortly after they had announced they were married.

"#Mood after surviving #COVID," McEnroe, 33, wrote in the caption. "Niamh and I caught it at the end of December and we've been dealing with it ever since."

He continued, "More surprising than the physical symptoms (non-stop bleeding nose, vicious migraines, back pain, no taste or smell), are the psychological ones. For the last two and a half weeks, I felt like I was making a journey through the Underworld."

"I'm not sure why, but the moods and emotions I felt were exceptionally dark almost every day. I was genuinely surprised and overwhelmed at times by how difficult it was so stay positive while feeling so badly," McEnroe wrote. "And yet, Niamh and I both talked about how this was exactly what we needed to go through to strengthen our faith and deepen our surrender to life on life's terms."

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"It's funny, we postponed announcing our marriage the first time only to get Covid as soon as we actually announced it," he wrote. "The irony of this was not lost on us. As the great Betty White recently said, "a sense of humor keeps her forever young." Truer words were never spoken. Making light of this situation and finding any ways to laugh about it was so important for us and our mental health."

McEnroe, whose grandfather is the actor Ryan O'Neal, said the experience made him think of the Greek myth of Orpheus.

"Orpheus was told not to look back at his wife Eurydice on their way out of the Underworld in order to save her, but tragically he did, and his wife was lost to him forever," he said. "As I was traveling through the Underworld of my subconscious, I knew that if I face every feeling that comes up with openness and compassion, extraordinary healing would be possible and I could come out of this ordeal with so many newfound treasures. But I was also knowing that the only way I could return to my life with these treasures intact was by maintaining complete faith in the process and not looking back, so to speak."

He added, "There truly is something so rewarding about going through a challenge like this, but keeping your perspective focused on hope and inspiration no matter how you feel, and then at last, experiencing the symbolic energy and breakthrough feeling of the dawn. That incredible relief when you know the long, dark night is finally over and you stand at the beginning of a new day, as a new person, transformed…"

Earlier this month, McEnroe told PEOPLE he and Niamh had tied the knot on September 29 in Sedona, Arizona.

"We decided to keep it private until now. We went through a lot of challenges and difficulties this past year," McEnroe told PEOPLE. "Niamh was pregnant in the fall but lost the baby at the end of her first trimester. It was devastating but in the end, it's made us closer and stronger. And our bond is better than it's ever been."

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