16 March 2021

Notes from Exile: On Choices and Vaccines

Before I go any further, I want to say that I am not anti-vaccine. I completely agree with the science, I'm a big fan of Dr. Fauci, and I know that this is the best way to get this beast under control so that we can all have a life again. It feels like we finally have some direction here in the US, and that is an amazing relief.

But there is one thing you should know about me. I have, as I have explained recently on social media, a near consciousness-losing fear of needles. I have been watching all the news reports about the vaccine and forcing myself to watch the actual injections and it is getting better, but not anywhere near resolved. 

Fun Fact the First: I once went on vacation with Starter Husband and his family and he got very dehydrated and ended up in the emergency room. Since that was in the Before Times, I went in with him and was there the whole time until they had to run an IV for hydration. I had to leave the room. 

Fun Fact the Second: I was interpreting once for a mammogram to pinpoint (ha, that was an interesting choice of words) the place for a biopsy, and when they gave the deaf client a shot to NUMB the area I got swimmy headed. When they inserted the needle for the biopsy the nurse came and asked me if I needed to sit down or have some water because apparently "that shade of greenish-gray comes on you right before you faint, sugar."

That, mind you, was in response to someone else having a needle inserted into their skin, not me.

So, I have been preparing myself for months for this two-step vaccine, understanding that it will require me to go ON PURPOSE and REQUEST two injections. (I can feel all of you rolling your eyes, it must be nice not to be afraid of anything, moving on...) Then I heard the best thing I've heard since "we have a vaccine," and that was "the Janssen/J&J vaccine is only one injection." One and done, y'all. ONE.

Apparently here in SC, this particular vaccine is available via CVS, so I've been camping out on their website. Right now when the unicorn of an open appointment time appears it is still reading as a Moderna injection, which is two-step, and not the fun Texas kind. So I wait.

And I wait. And I watch. And...I am ridiculed and teased. For making an adult choice (getting the vaccine) and having patience (staying in relative isolation) for my turn to come. I don't have to go to a workplace any time soon. I don't have parents that I miss hugging. I can wait - and I am being responsible about it, and those folks that want to tease me about my fear or guilt me into doing something other than what feels right to me...well, I don't know what to tell you other than you aren't going to change my mind.

I am not paranoid. I am not a hermit. I am not anti-social (well, no more than I was). I am not unfriendly, cold, or childish. I am not most of the hurtful things that I've heard about myself over the last year. So please be kind to those of us planning vacations and visits and generally time AWAY from our homes who are choosing to do what we feel is right and not running headlong into two injections - it is okay for us to wait, at home, isolated and safe.

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