Pre-pandemic (and more so now) I was no longer fond of watching the news. Primarily because inspiring stories like how Hidilyn Diaz (Would You Rather Give Up Or Lift Some More?) persevered and finally bagged gold in the Olympics or (yep I needed to Google “good news today Philippines” and number 1 result is https://www.goodnewspilipinas.com/ with featured article entitled) “globe to serve more Filipinos abroad with 5G roaming expansion” do not come by often. What sells more are news like “Philippines records second-highest daily rise in COVID-19 cases” and “EMERGING MARKETS-Asia tech rout drags stocks lower on pandemic, crackdown worries” (Googled “news today Philippines”).
Today is the second round of 1st doses here in Light Residences. I did not bother to register at admin office as I was not set on getting the vaccine yet. I know it is a bit childish, but I am scared of needles. When I was young, I would pinch my pediatrician’s hand whenever I came in for vaccination, and I cried from her office all the way home plus some couple of hours more. When I was pregnant and had to have my blood sugar checked, I was shaking uncontrollably (partly because of the cold temperature in the clinic). Oh, and did I say they extracted blood from me? Blood!!!
I do not think I have a phobia of needles (and blood), but I do not like them. So when I woke up this morning, I was hoping that the vaccine brand would be Janssen, so I would only have to go under the needle once! It turned out to be Astra Zeneca, so I told myself I am 36, not 4 years old, so strap on a pair! I am glad I mustered up the courage to have the vaccine shot. Why?
1. It is convenient. Fortunately, our condominium’s admin office were able arrange for the vaccines to be administered at the function room. So if in the future I will be required to get the shot anyway, better that I do not have to go farther than the 8th floor. Thank you so much to all the people who made this possible.
2. It is free. To be honest, I would probably think twice if it was not. And made more of an effort to research the pros and cons of each brand. Though why bother, unless I find out one is fatal or something, I probably would have just based my decision on the price.
3. It is timely. My belief since the start of the pandemic has always been (and still is) I am (relatively) safe as long as I am healthy. Again, I am not claiming to be an expert or anything, but in my understanding, this delta variant may not be necessarily more fatal, but definitely spreads faster. If one is familiar with probabilities and statistics, one could easily get scared and make decisions that are not at odds with say, the chances of surviving this pandemic.
4. It is required for travel (in the future). May or may not happen, but just in case, I want to be prepared. If I will be honest, this would have made me get the vaccine sooner if it meant I could travel already.
5. It is effective. Again, I am not claiming to have made an extensive research or anything (on the contrary, it is quite the opposite), but I would like to believe it is. Otherwise, shall we look into the several conspiracy theories out there and see if there is some grain of truth in them, no matter how out of this world some sounds?
6. I get discounts at some establishments. Need I say more? I should have opened with this and saved time trying to come up with 9 more reasons.
7. I feel safer. Maybe it is just psychological, as I only had one shot, but at least I am halfway there. I am relatively healthy, and it is reassuring to think that I have just upped the ante!
8. I feel more optimistic. Part of the reason why I have been feeling a bit down lately is that I frankly do not see the light at the end of the tunnel just yet. I mean, Manila is back in ECQ, for crying out loud! Now that I (along with my several hundred neighbors) have taken a small step in the general direction of hopefully a safer, healthier and better world, it makes being in the dark a little bit more tolerable.
9. I feel more responsible. I am aware that nobody is forcing me (maybe I would have resisted otherwise) and it was my personal choice. However, I arrived at that decision not only thinking about myself. I acknowledge that we are all living interdependently and we need each other’s support and cooperation to have a pleasant life in this planet. Or in this situation, to survive this pandemic as a species. Social responsibility exists for a reason.
10. I feel good knowing that I am keeping myself (and the people I love) well and healthy.
In step 2, counselling / screening, I was interviewed with another woman. In the question about taking medications, she mentioned a hormone pill or something. I was not eavesdropping (I do not like it) but I am not deaf so I was not surprised when the guy (yep, male) asked her (in a respectful, almost whispering, manner) when her last menstrual period was and when she last had sex.
In the course of the asthma, diabetes, hypertension questions, I voluntarily mentioned that the only time I was in the hospital was when I was 7 and 7 years ago when I had a baby. So I was startled when I was asked the same two questions. It would have been fun if I could have said I just had sex a couple of hours ago! But I just had to ask the relevance of those information to the vaccine. I mean like, if a woman has her period, she cannot? Or if a person just had sex (or 17 long months ago), he or she cannot? Turns out, it was only to find out if we are pregnant. He apologized if he made me uncomfortable and I said, no, not at all. I mean if asked where and what position, I could have told him without batting an eyelash. If I were in the mood, and not worrying about the needle, who knows? Maybe I would have made him feel uncomfortable!
So anyway, my point is that, maybe instead of asking about a woman’s menstrual period and sex life, why not just ask her if she is pregnant? After all, this is not like getting interrogated by one’s mother at age 17. Getting the COVID-19 vaccine is a serious health matter, and I do not see any reason why anyone would not answer these questions truthfully.
To my faint-hearted friends, consider yourselves warned. I wish I could say that I wish somebody gave me a heads up, but I do not really need it. And I am very comfortable with that.
Have you had your vaccine shot yet?
#ToABetterSarah #RaisingSophia #COVID-19