This post was developed in collaboration with Thomas Jefferson University and NORC at the University of Chicago as part of a Pfizer-funded research study. All thoughts and opinions are always my own.
Having the ability to say “yes” or “no”, to have a choice, is super important to me. I am able to get information and make up my own mind about things that pertain to myself and my family. At the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, I have to admit I was very scared. It was a lot of uncertainty for the entire world and I did not know how or what I could do to help. I am a helper, that is my nature, if I can help, or be of assistance, you can bet that I will do what I can. That is what I wanted to do when it came to the pandemic. In this post, I’ll be talking about the COVID-19 pandemic and the Pfizer vaccine. This is my story and in it, I will be sharing how and why I chose how I did and what my feelings are now. However you choose, it is your decision and I am happy that we had choices.
If you follow me on social media you are aware that I did receive the COVID-19 vaccine back in 2021. I went with my friend and fellow Army spouse, Jackie for the first one and honestly, I wanted to cry because I felt hope. Hope for many things. As military spouses, we made the decision that attaining the Pfizer vaccine was the best choice for us. At that point, the Pfizer vaccine was not FDA-approved. The Pfizer vaccine became the first COVID-19 FDA-approved vaccine on August 23, 2021, and it has been proven safe for children 5 years and up.
Since the beginning of the pandemic, death from COVID-19 had begun to slowly arrive in my hometown. We could not have expected it would get so close to us, but ultimately our focus was getting some form of protection just in case it did. Currently, the numbers are lower and we are so happy, but lest we forget what we’ve been through in false hopes that it is over, so we still take precautions by wearing a mask. Here are some facts on the infection rate and fatalities since the pandemic began.
Unfortunately to date, more than 75 million Americans have been infected and 888 thousand Americans have died from COVID-19”? Sadly we lost 4 family members on my dad’s side and over 10 family friends to COVID-19. That is a statistic no one wanted to be a part of, yet here we are. At one point I remember feeling panic when my parents called. One does not realize that PTSD can affect outside of war, but that panic was real and I spoke with my therapist about it for a few months.
At this time my immediate family is vaccinated. Ezra needs his second shot to complete the series and Aramis is fully vaccinated minus the booster. My husband and I are both fully vaccinated and boosted. I actually received the booster on Christmas Eve. Thankfully none of us had any issues with the vaccinations, other than the pain in the upper arm, at the injection site. Studies have shown that some side effects from the second shot may be more intense than after the first shot.
Being a military family, vaccinations have always been an important topic of discussion for us. We travel from wherever we are stationed, which has been as far away as North Carolina and now Arizona, back to our families in Texas for the holidays or summer. Not only does travel put us at risk, but the exposure to people of all walks of life that my husband comes in contact with also increases our chances of becoming ill with an illness that we could have been vaccinated against. Vaccinations are important to me and my husband and hopefully, the COVID-19 pandemic will soon be a thing of the past, but moving forward I plan to keep protecting myself and my family. I plan on continuing to follow the studies and data on COVID-19 infections in and around areas we frequent. Just like I plan to continue to inform myself about potential risks, my hope is that you’ll do the same for your family. I’m open to a conversation on this topic.
Wishing you all continued health!