Tangled Up in Blue: Second dose

A few weeks removed from my second dose of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine, and I’m still in shock.

First, I’m in shock at how crappy I felt the day following the second dose. I had been warned, and was preparing myself for the possibility.

“Don’t forget, you may feel sick tomorrow!”

How often do I get to tell myself that, besides during a night of heavy drinking?

Yet, when I woke up feeling like I was charged by a bear, then hit by a bus, all after a night of heavy drinking, I was still floored by how floored I actually felt. I spent the day taking meetings from my bed, with the Zoom video off.

I snuggled up under the sheets to avoid the sun when I could and, in turn, fell asleep more often than I would have liked. I reminded myself of a song lyric from Dr. Dog: “She gets dressed up like a pillow, so she’s always in bed.”

I took a collective 200 steps throughout the entire day, which is the distance from my bed to my bathroom times 10. It would’ve been more, but I moved my aspirin from my bathroom vanity to my bedside table.

I sweated and shivered the day away, vacillating between the two as my fever spiked and dropped. It was a heck of a way to finish off a yearlong journey toward vaccination.

Now, I’m just as in shock at how little I feel like changing my COVID style of living. It turns out, the people I decided to bubble with are my favorite people. It turns out, I really enjoy cooking dinner instead of going out. It turns out, I really enjoy snuggling up to a movie instead of hitting the town.

I’m sure once things start to open up more and return to more of a “normal” my feelings will change, but currently I feel content.

I haven’t been content with one aspect, though. I really miss my family on the East Coast, but I’m still in shock at how cheap flights to the East Coast currently are and ecstatic that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has stated that fully vaccinated people can do domestic travel safely (while still wearing a mask, of course).

So, I get to see my family soon! It’s been a heck of a long time since I saw my parents and brother. Plus, there are two new additions to the extended family that I haven’t met yet.

I’m shocked that this is finally happening. Probably just as shocked as I was this time last year when I realized that the pandemic was our new reality.

This year of shock has added up to a whole big dose of appreciation. I’m grateful that everyone in my family is healthy and vaccinated so I can take the time to visit them. I’m grateful for the hardworking scientists and health care workers that have made the vaccine available across the state of Alaska and the world. I’m grateful for the people in my bubble, who made this year bearable with board games and home-cooked meals.

And I’m grateful for that day spent in bed with a fever, because I woke up the next day rested, refreshed and ready for whatever is next.