It was the same as every other ordinary (extremely busy) Monday this semester, except that the state of Ohio opened up vaccine appointments to all adults.
I get a text from one of my roommates hours later letting us know she got the vaccine and when she got home she'd show us how she signed up so fast. My heart leaped with excitement; I didn't anticipate getting my vaccine until the summer most likely. It didn't even cross my mind that I could get it in March, let alone the same day.
I did what I always do when it comes to big news; I called my boyfriend.
Normally when I have big news, no one is more excited than my Jake. I could ask him to come with me to give a black bear a pedicure and he'd jump for the opportunity to hang out with me and try something new.
Now he'd be unphased with pampering a black bear, but not when I brought up the sharp, pointy thing involved in getting shots. Big man isn't afraid of much, but needles are the one thing that he can hardly talk about, let alone jump at the opportunity to stick a bunch of 'em in.
I called him excited, asking if he wanted to sign up for the vaccine tomorrow. He's silent for a few pips, then shakily says yes. We schedule an appointment a few counties over for mid-morning and we go about our day.
I'm pretty nervous the morning of but ultimately decided to eat a good breakfast.
I bring a muffin to my muffin and I try to distract him on the drive there. We have no idea where we're going and poke fun at just about everything we see, trying to keep our minds off the inevitable.
As we're about to pull into the parking lot, I can tell he's trying pretty hard to keep it together. I squeeze his hand and in we go.
It was absolutely painless. He goes first and takes it like an absolute champ. His best shot ever, he said, claiming I'm his lucky charm.
I go next and it legit felt like someone just poked me in the arm with the tip of a plastic pen. Easy peasy.
There's no area in the pharmacy we got our vaccines to wait the 15 minutes, so we sit in my car and decompress (we also took the selfie that's the cover photo of this article.)
On the drive back my arm throbs, but it's manageable.
I slowly started getting drowsier as the day went on, and as my arm started getting sorer and sorer, but not too bad.
I'm in a meeting around seven p.m. when it starts. I just start feeling really bad, despite the two pre-emptive steaming bowls of pastina I had just eaten. I decide to take the night off and start a new show ("Reign", it's addictive.) My temperature slowly rises as the night goes on, with the onset of chills and a slight cough accompanying it.
I slept horribly that night.
I'd wake up sweating, then freezing, then lay awake for an hour with my mind racing and nothing could stop it. I couldn't even use my pillows because my neck would ache. I ended up sleeping completely diagonal in my bed laying completely flat on my back. My temperature hit 101.
All Wednesday I had a temperature, chills, was exhausted and felt generally so horrible. Worked my internship for a few hours (I was surprisingly productive), skipped my classes to nap, then woke up and worked a few more hours for my internship. Forced myself to do a good amount of work before going to bed at 10:30, which is absurdly early for me.
Friday I felt much better, but not 100%. My arm was still incredibly sore and was until today, the day I'm writing this piece, six whole days after my vaccine. I finally started feeling somewhat back to normal today too. I'm hoping I won't have any more symptoms with my next vaccine in a few days; I did already have the virus once in June.
Should my account hinder you from doing your part and getting a vaccine? Absolutely not. I have zero regrets. Trust science and trust the vaccine. The end of this wacky time is in sight and I'm glad that I'm helping the world, one needle at a time.