It’s finally happened, after what feels like forever I’ve had my first covid vaccine. I can’t tell you the relief I felt after having the injection. It feels like such massive weight lifted and I don’t have to worry every single day about my health.
I’m so happy to have had my first covid vaccine and I know some of you might be wondering why I’ve had it, well that’s because I’m classed as clinically vulnerable and that puts me into group 6 which they started vaccinating a few weeks ago now I think. The relief when I’d heard I could get it, I can’t explain honestly.
Every single day since i’d heard they were starting to vaccinate group 6 I was one edge, waiting for the phone call, text, letter.. anything to say I could book my vaccine but that never came and after I saw on twitter that the NHS website had been updated so clinically vulnerable people could book I was straight online. On the 2nd March I managed to book both my first for Saturday 6th and 2nd vaccine for later in May, the process wasn’t the most straight forward after I thought I’d booked my vaccine and then got to the end only to find out the slot I wanted had been booked so had to start over again and find a different venue but eventually it was done and my heart went back to a normal heart rate. I think if I had waited to be contacted i’d still be waiting now and probably would be waiting for another good few weeks.
After booking, I got a confirmation email and text with all the details I needed on including the venue address, what I needed to bring and two reference numbers that I needed to keep safe for when I went to get my first and second vaccine. I actually took a screenshot of the reference numbers to be sure, I made sure to cover all the bases, I didn’t want anything to go wrong.
The few days between booking and the day felt like forever and when the day finally arrived I was actually quite nervous. I mean excited to get it but nervous about how I was going to handle it the vaccine itself and the side effects. My appointment wasn’t until 5:20 in the afternoon so I had all day to think about it. When the time came I actually had my mom to drive me as I didn’t know how I was going to feel after so just thought this was the safest option but in the end I was actually was okay to drive myself home but it was nice to have someone with me.
We drove into the busy vaccination car park to be greeted by a volunteer holding some forms and asked me to fill one in with my name, address and doctors details etc. and then was I was ready to head into the venue myself, the venue was classed as a dentist/pharmacy and was quite small so your experience may be a little different to mine. They had a tent outside with another volunteer to make sure you had sanitised your hands and were wearing a mask and then she checked my form to make sure I had filled in all the right details. Then she explained where to go and that there would be someone to take my temperature as I entered the building.
The volunteers were amazing and so friendly, I couldn’t praise them enough. After having my temperature taken I was asked my name and date of birth and then was told what vaccine I would be having, it was the AstraZeneca (Oxford) one then they asked if I was happy to have it. I just waited for a couple of minutes before being called through to have my vaccine.
The vaccine experience itself was so quick. I sat down and was asked if I had any allergies and if I was on any medication. I was waiting to be asked which arm I wanted it in but I was never asked the question but normally you would thankfully the nurse injected me in the left arm which is where I would have asked to have had it done anyway. The injection itself was painless and even though I did feel it going in it lasted for literally 2 seconds and that was it. I mean of all the needles I’ve had in my life and there’s been a lot, too many to count it was probably one of the best needle experiences I have ever had and that’s saying something. It was so quick and easy.
If I had drove by myself then I would have had to have waited 15 minutes in my car before driving off to make sure I was okay but I felt absolutely fine after having the jab and walked out with my coat on and with a smile on my face even though you couldn’t see it under my mask. I couldn’t have been happier. My mom drove us home and the relief I felt was amazing. I’ve now just got to wait 11 more weeks for my second jab.
Now, before I get into the side effects please remember that everyone is going to react differently and side effects are going to happen but they won’t last long. You could be really lucky and only have a sore arm but it wasn’t like that for me. I knew with my history and immune system that I was going to have side effects but didn’t know how bad.
Last Saturday, the night I had my vaccine I was actually in bed by 10pm, not even 4 hours after that at 2pm I woke up and I knew that was the start of my side effects. I woke up with chills everywhere, I couldn’t get warm at all even with my duvet and blanket over me. My whole body felt in pain. The feeling really took me back to my chemo days. I didn’t sleep at all from 2am until 7am. I pretty much got 4 hours sleep, I was exhausted the morning after.
On Sunday, I was in bed all day, I only got up to go to the toilet and that was it. I just felt exhausted and felt like I had been bit by a bus. I checked my temperature and it was at 38.9 so it was high. I lay in bed with a cold flannel on my head with some paracetmol, I felt dizzy, had the worst headache, my whole body just like no, so i basically slept the day away. I woke up every few hours checking my temp to see if it changed and thankfully by mid morning it had come back down to normal but by about 5/6pm it had spiked back up to 38.9 again. I knew because I felt so bad though the vaccine was working. Oh, nearly forgot to mention and my arm.. omg. The achy arm is the absolute worst thing ever. I swear I couldn’t move it all day and the worst thing about it was I sleep on my left side, I didn’t think about that when I had the injection did I.
On the Monday I still felt ill and although my temperature had come right down again I didn’t leave my bed unless I wanted food so again spent most of my day sleeping on and off and watching a film on Netflix. I kept having random pains, my chest felt tight but to be honest this is normal for me anyway and again just felt so exhausted to the point getting up and out of bed really took me quite a while and took my breath away.
Thankfully now a few days on, I’m a lot better. Still tired and my arm is achy and even though having had 70% of the possible side effects I’m still so thankful that I’ve had the opportunity to have had my first vaccine. I just want to say though this is my own experience with the covid vaccine and your covid vaccine experience and symptoms could be totally different to mine, they probably will be. Nobody reacts the same and everyone is different wether you have the AstraZeneca or Pfizer vaccine.
If you’re really unsure about the vaccine and the process I hope this post has helped put your mind at ease a little and you can always find me over on my socials if you ever want to chat about it! Please send me a DM and I’ll always get back to you.
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