Betty and I have passed the magic date and are feeling good. In mid-February, we both received our first dose of the Pfizer Covid vaccine. Then, on March 4th, we were jabbed with dose number two. Using the CDC guideline, we waited two weeks for the vaccine to achieve its full protective power.
So, here we sit, a few weeks later, with a few lingering questions:
1) Now that we have 95% protection, what can we start doing?
2) We still wear a mask to encourage its use by others, but for how long?
3) Will these shots require a booster at some point? When?
4) Is a 5% risk of still getting Covid significant?
5) How can we prove we are vaccinated? The cards we were given after each shot don’t look terribly official.
6) If we decide to fly somewhere, will we still be required to get an expensive Covid test within 72 hours of the flight? So far, Hawaii says, “Yes.”
At least for us, the number of questions we have now is almost as many as existed twelve months ago. Sure, we feel much safer. We have resumed weekly Sunday dinners with our immediate family. We no longer cringe when someone coughs; it could just be a cold. We have started going back to the gym because it continues to enforce mask mandates and distancing protocols.
Obviously, though, the shots did not completely quell our uneasiness. Hence the questions above. Questions that are probably unanswerable, at least in the short term. There has not enough in-the-field, real-world data to know whether we are protected for six months, one year, a decade, or a lifetime.
With at least a quarter of the American population against being vaccinated for a whole basketful of reasons, when does the majority decide, well, they made their bed. Good luck. It is just a bloody shame front-line health workers, teachers, and others will have to accommodate their refusal.
We are done with mask breath and trying to communicate through a cloth. We miss hugs and handshakes. Concerts, plays, sporting events? Yes, I remember them. When will they safely restart? Will the unvaccinated be in attendance?
I’d love to have you share your experience, fears or insecurities, and what you believe our future world will look like. Will there be vaccination passports for travel? Will schools have a problem with children who come from an anti-vax household? Eventually, will the fear of being protected by a shot fade as the evidence of its protection grows?
Ultimately, I guess I wonder when masks go into a momento box, to be shown to a future generation, as a mark of this time in our life story?