I was always going to get vaccinated. First-hand accounts from friends and colleagues who contracted COVID were enough to convince me that I didn’t want to experience the full effects of COVID, and given that the vaccine helps with that, I was ready to be signed up.   

It’s been widely reported in the media that there has been low COVID-19 vaccination take up rates across some ethnic minority groups. But I just expected (because we have a tendency to surround ourselves with people who think and act like us) that my friends and family would largely feel the same way that I did about the vaccine.

I was wrong.

When I got the text message back in February inviting me to book an appointment for my first Oxford AstraZeneca jab I was legitimately excited. But as I shared my excitement with my nearest and dearest I heard some comments that really gave me pause.

Like what you ask?

  • “Are you sure about that?”
  • “I can’t believe you’re doing it!”
  • “Don’t sign up to be anyone’s guinea pig”
  • “Well I’m not going to get it!”
  • “It’s fine for you! You’ve already had your children!” (Just to add, there is no proven link between the vaccine and infertility, and here’s a great thread to show where the misinformation originated)
  • “X-person works in the medical field and they aren’t getting it so you shouldn’t get it either. It’s unsafe!”
  • “Good luck with that! I’ll pray for you!”
  • I was baffled and so I went forward anyway.

I’ve had both doses of my COVID vaccine now and I feel really good about my decision. If you’re on the fence I want to share my experience in case it helps.

But first a note:

You might be thinking “How has Dana managed to be vaccinated so quickly? Her age group hasn’t even been called up yet” and you would be right. What’s important to bear in mind is that because of underlying health conditions some people have been vaccinated sooner than others. If someone hasn’t disclosed their health conditions to you, assume they don’t want you to know and move on. Also skip the comments like “You’re so lucky!” Let’s just say that if someone got moved up the list for vaccinations they might not be feeling pretty lucky.

I had both of my vaccines in a Church. It was like a military operation. Very organised. A socially distanced, fast moving queue outside, a wellness check while in the queue, 2 independent checks of details like name and date of birth, signposting of expected side effects and then the jab itself. I was in and out in under 10mins each time. And everyone was really pleasant and polite while being professional.

Dose 1

I had my first jab in the late afternoon and was fine for most of the evening other than the ache in my arm at the vaccination site. But close to bedtime I had fever and chills and aching muscles. It was a rough night. The fever and chills resolved overnight. The next day I stayed in bed with aching muscles and lethargy. I slept a lot, but by the evening was feeling much better. When I woke up on the following morning I was back to normal although the soreness in my arm did last a couple more days.

Dose 2

I had the jab first thing in the morning. There was some soreness in the arm, but not as much as the first time. I did have some muscle ache and fatigue but it was insignificant enough that I was able to continue my day as normal.

So, am I glad I did it? Absolutely! And would I do it again? Hell yeah! 

Feel free to contact me if you have any questions. I’m happy to chat about this any time.