This week I got vaccinated. After the announcement on Monday that 25-29 year-olds could book their vaccine appointment, I woke up extra early to book my slot on Tuesday. I clearly wasn’t the only geeky-keen one. It was reported that Tuesday – the first day that 25-29 year-olds could book a jab – saw the most bookings of the vaccine thus far, roughly four times what has been deemed ‘normal’. Say what you want about Millennials but they want to get back to living!
I managed to book a slot for Wednesday and so, the following day I waltzed off in the toasty morning light to CP House Ealing, my closest vaccination centre. The whole thing was quick and painless – the nurse administering the jab told me it would feel like a “rough scratch”, but I barely even felt it. Admittedly I have a pretty high pain threshold; I credit waxing, epilation and living as a woman for that. “Wow. You’re in a good mood!” The masked volunteer said to me with what I assume was a grin on her face. I’ve got rather good at reading masked expressions at this point, I think. “Of course,” I said. “This is a big moment.” And it was.
I remember distinctly how I felt a year ago; I was in a post-birthday funk and in the depths of our first national lockdown. A solution to the sci-fi novel-turned-reality we were living in seemed so distant that it almost wasn’t worth talking about. Vaccines? Well, those could take years to be approved and rolled out the experts reminded us on the news every evening. We had a long way to go, and now, a year on – while we are not yet out of the woods – we can certainly see the clearing. Nature is healing and science has triumphed!
To see my peers’ Instagram stories flooded with vaccine cards, to watch my mum receive her second jab, to look on as Biden buys 500 million doses of Pfizer’s vaccine to donate to the world; it has been one surreal week. “Surreal, but nice.” Maybe the nice times will keep coming. Perhaps the unpleasant times are on the out. If some days still feel like a rough scratch, well, we already know we can deal with that.