My gosh, I woke up yesterday morning thinking a Starlux Airlines gift would be the most exciting thing to happen. Little did I know that within 24 hours we’d go from no expectations of vaccines for our parents in the immediate future, to having all of them vaccinated. I can’t even begin to explain how elated I am.
My mom’s call yesterday morning…
Early yesterday morning my mom called to tell me that she heard on the local news that they were starting to take vaccine appointments in her area that day. I was caught off guard:
- The whole vaccine rollout has been kind of frustrating, so I’ve been trying to keep my mind off it to avoid getting angry and frustrated; besides, my parents watch the local news, so I knew that they’d hear when it did start happening
- I figured that appointments would be impossible to get, and that they’d be scheduled weeks out
- My mom mentioned how the website for registering was tough to use, and how the phone number for booking an appointment had a 12 hour hold time
Suddenly my focus went from trying to get work done, to doing everything I could to get prepared to schedule their appointments. They only started taking appointments in their area at a certain time, so I spent the next couple of hours setting up accounts for everyone, doing “trial runs” of the website so that I’d be quick when the booking window opened, etc.
My dad is 75+, and his appointment slot opened at 10:30AM. I logged in online at exactly the right time, and as you’d expect, the website kept crashing. I spent 47 minutes clicking like my life depended on it, and eventually got him an appointment… for this morning!
The appointment slot for my mom and Ford’s mom opened later in the day, but at this point I knew exactly what I was doing. I used the horrible interface to my advantage (you have to click like 47 things, and I knew exactly what to select), and managed to get appointments for them within a minute of the reservations going live, using one hand for my tablet and one hand for my laptop.
I was in complete disbelief. We went from having no expectations of them getting vaccinated in the next few weeks, to having appointments for them less than 24 hours later (Ford’s mom would have to drive cross state for this, but it was oh-so-worth-it). The follow-up appointments were even scheduled at the same time.
At that point I spent the rest of the afternoon trying to get appointments for our parents’ other senior friends, with mixed luck.
At that point I broke down…
I can’t even begin to describe how overjoyed I was when I had appointments for all three of our parents confirmed. This is what we had been waiting for, and it was finally here… and just a day later.
I felt so many different emotions. At first I was shaking and jittering, due to the adrenaline of trying to get the spots. Then my head started to tingle and I started sighing in relief. And then I just broke down and cried, which I don’t often do.
Obviously coronavirus hasn’t been easy on anyone, but I’m sure I’m not alone in feeling the worst for seniors. Not only are they the most vulnerable, but they’ve also largely been the most isolated.
In the case of both of my parents:
- My mom was diagnosed with ovarian cancer on Mother’s Day in 2019, and after enduring more than I ever could, going through 18 rounds of chemo and two surgeries, she’s in remission… and then coronavirus started
- My dad lives alone, and has more-or-less been in isolation for 10 months, with no human contact, other than the time we’ve spent together
To say that I’m relieved and grateful for their vaccinations would be the understatement of the year. Soon (hopefully in a bit over a month, well after they get their second dose) my parents can get back some quality of life. That means more to me than anything.
The fact that I’ll be able to spend more time with them without having to worry as much as before will just be amazing. Thanks to the scientists, doctors, healthcare workers, and everyone else involved, who has made this possible. I have no words…
The past 24 hours has been the best couple of days I’ve had since the start of the pandemic. To go from no appointments to having our parents vaccinated in less than 24 hours is something I couldn’t have dreamed of. While there have been some challenges with the vaccine rollout, I’m eternally grateful that my parents have been vaccinated this soon.
It’s still a dark time for coronavirus, but this gives me so much hope for the future, and it brings me indescribable joy that the seniors in our family can get some quality of life back in the coming weeks, and that hopefully the mortality rate of coronavirus can start to decrease.
To seniors and those with seniors in their lives, what has your experience been with getting vaccinated? Anyone else have a complete joyous meltdown when it finally happened, either for yourself or a loved one?