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My vaccine “why”: I want to hug my dad


Woman wearing a mask receives a vaccine from a nurse
Nurse Wendi gives Anne her shot at the Prince George Civic Centre. Anne’s was the 79th dose of vaccine Wendi had administered that day. Photo: Laura Elsenheimer

I recently got my first dose of COVID-19 vaccine at the Northern Health clinic at the Prince George Civic Centre, and it was a very positive experience.

Why did I do it?

There were lots of reasons… including being part of the solution, returning to normalcy, protecting our most vulnerable, and so on.

But really, I just want to hug my dad.

Neither my husband’s family nor mine lives in Prince George (they’re mostly down on the coast), so they’re not in our bubble. Even with our Zoom get-togethers, it’s been a long, lonely time.

The last time I hugged my dad was 11 am on February 28, 2020, right before leaving his house to catch the ferry.

My dad and stepmom have already had their first dose, and so have my sisters and brothers. The niece-and-nephew generation is up next, along with our son. When the whole family is fully vaccinated (and provincial restrictions are lifted), we’ll be able to get together. Just the thought of this brings tears of joy to my eyes.

The whole process of getting my shot was fast, smooth, and easy. There was excellent physical distancing in the Civic Centre, and everyone I encountered was helpful and friendly.

Nurse Wendi, who gave me my vaccine, was cheerful and pleasant, and the shot itself didn’t hurt at all – I actually couldn’t even feel it (apparently they use a very thin needle for the COVID vaccines). Wendi said she’s enjoying being part of the vaccine clinic.

“I also work in Emerge,” she said. “With this, you can chat with people for a minute, and you see a well population, which is nice.”

I was Wendi’s 79th vaccination of the day; she figured she was on track to beat the 90 she had done the day before (!). As well, I got the last dose of vaccine in the vial, which somehow felt special and lucky (though of course she had lots more vials in the little cooler on her table).

“It’s a good system,” she said. “They’ve really got it down pat.”

My arm was a bit sore for 24 hours, and I felt more tired and lazy than usual for a couple of days, but those were my only side effects.

All in all, a great process, and I’m looking forward to dose 2! (and my hug!)