Getting the Covid-19 Vaccine

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It did not take long for me to change my mind about receiving the COVID-19 vaccine. I originally thought, like so many others, that I was going to hang back and wait for more vaccines to be distributed because I was unsure, fearful, and most importantly, uneducated about what was in the vaccine and how developed it is. Once I spoke with my doctor who is incredibly trusted by myself and my family, and he suggested that I get it as soon as possible before also informing me that he had already received both doses of the vaccine. So, I got an appointment during one of the first rounds of eligibility due to my working in a childcare facility, along with my grandparents who were able to get theirs because they are in their late seventies, and my aunt and cousin who also work in a school. All of our appointments were within a few weeks of one another, and I’d be remiss to not mention that I did feel better having other members of my family receive the vaccine along with me as opposed to being the only person in my personal circle to get vaccinated. It is also important to note that I was nervous from the time the news broke that the vaccine was being made available to the public all the way through my second dose. So, I do not write this with the intention to convince everyone that they should have zero worries or anxieties about getting the shot, especially because so many people are reporting side effects that are less than fun. Sure, we should trust the science and do what we can to contribute to the solution of this pandemic, but a new vaccine, especially one surrounded by so many rumors and debates, is still undoubtedly nerve-wrecking. 


According to the CDC, side effects at the site and in the arm of the injection may include pain and swelling. As for the rest of the body, reported side effects so far include fever, chills, tiredness and headache. I get it: my first dose hit me like a truck, and I had all of the aforementioned side effects in full force. I had a low-grade fever which I could feel due to the irritating warmth throughout my body and my inability to get comfortable temperature-wise, I had a wicked migraine, and I had chills and aches that rendered me unable to sleep because of how much pain I was in. When I say my whole body was hurting, I mean my entire body, from bottom to top and including my jaw and the rest of my face. Not only did I have some peace of mind knowing that the side effects are telling of the body actively fighting the proteins from the vaccine that it thinks is the virus, but, I got through it and was back to normal about thirty six hours later with no prolonged issues. As of February 15th, I had received both doses. After the second dose, the bit of achiness in my lower body felt like nothing compared to my first experience. A bit over twenty four hours and two Tylenol later, I was once again as good as new. 


Since this is about my own personal experience and reasoning behind my decision to get vaccinated, I will shamelessly say that I would take these irritating but fleeting side effects  any day over the damaging and oftentimes deadly after-effects that result from COVID. Most importantly, it seems a small price to pay to lessen the chances of myself, my loved ones, and the people and families of the people I might come into contact with, having to endure and possibly lose their lives to this virus.. My goal here is to tell you that I am proud to have contributed to the beginning of what will hopefully be a decline in COVID infection rates and fatalities, and getting our world not back to normal, but safer and healthier at the very least. I didn’t enjoy the needle or the side effects, because who does? It ultimately seems like a small price to pay, though, for the added layer of protection and safety I feel for myself and my loved ones who have been or soon will be vaccinated.