Singer-songwriter Christopher Cross, best know for his late–‘70s hits “Ride Like the Wind” and “Sailing,” opened up about his recent battle with COVID-19, calling the experience “the darkest days of my life.” He was paralyzed and in intensive care for 10 days, he tells Serena Altschul for this weekend’s installment of “CBS Sunday Morning.”
“There was some, you know, come-to-Jesus moments or whatever, where I was looking for any help I could get to through this, to get out of this thing. Because I wasn’t sure,” Cross says in his first television interview since battling the virus.
Cross, 69, was diagnosed after a trip to Mexico City. He and his girlfriend both tested positive and were sick for about three weeks. He felt good enough to go to the supermarket in April and when he got home, his legs gave out. He was then diagnosed with Guillain-Barre Syndrome, which caused his body to attack his nerves. His doctors believed it was caused by COVID-19.
“It was the worst 10 days of my life,” Cross says. “And I couldn’t walk, could barely move. And so, it was certainly the darkest of times for me. You know? It really was touch and go, and tough.”
In the interview, Cross explains why he’s speaking out now to help others.
“I’m not a big celebrity, but it’s important for people to know you can get this disease,” he says. “And so, I felt it was sort of my obligation to share with people. ‘Look, this is a big deal. Like, you’ve got to wear your mask. You’ve got to take care of each other. Because, you know, this could happen to you.’”
The paralysis was temporary, but he still needs a cane to get around — and other functions are impacted as well.
“My walking is affected,” he says. “My speech at times can be affected. Memory is a big deal, too. Just neurologically, I’m kind of a little foggy. You know? Now I’m on medication … a nerve pain medication, which also can cause some fogginess. But until I can get off it at some point, I won’t know how clear I would be. But most people with Guillain-Barre heal about 90% to 100% over about a year. That’s what my prognosis is.”
Watch the preview here. “CBS This Morning” airs Sunday at 9 a.m. local time.