Pfizer Vaccine & Me

I’ve thought long and hard about sharing my experience with the Pfizer Covid-19 vaccine. Ultimately, I decided that information is key in making informed decisions.

Photo by Pavel Danilyuk on Pexels.com

On July 27, 2021, I decided to get the vaccine. The pharmacist who administered the shot, jokingly asked that I stay 10-12 minutes after the injection to make sure I didn’t pass out or that my head didn’t explode. I chuckled. After waiting the required time, I started to my car. I noticed a slight tingling in my face. As the evening wore on, the tingling became stronger and a numbing sensation set in. It would be accurate to say that my face felt “rubbery” – much like how I feel after a dental procedure when the Novocaine starts to wear off. The thought crossed my mind that maybe my head was really going to blow up.

The next morning, no improvement. In fact, my face started to swell and itch. My scalp felt like my hair was trying to crawl off my head. My primary care provider suggested that I take Benedryl which I did.

Within two weeks, my eyes started watering – excessively. Tears would stream down my face. It was hard to be productive at work as I was constantly drying my eyes. I went to the eye doctor looking for help. I was advised to try drops and hot compresses.

After a month of dealing with this, my primary care provider, whose associate had experience working with facial paralysis, concluded that the trigeminal nerve was inflamed and prescribed Prednisone. Nine days later – the symptoms had lessened but were still present. We hoped that the nerve would continue to settle. It didn’t.

Numbness has now moved into the left side of my mouth and the left side of my tongue though this is not a constant condition.

At this point, we are trying Vitamin B injections. Not sure how effective this is going to be but it’s a safer alternative than a steroid.

My eyes are still watering but thankfully not continually streaming down my face – and the area around my eyes is chapped and raw.

My face is still itchy, tingling and numb. The swelling is now mostly around my eyes, under my lips and down the left side of my neck.

I received the injection in my left arm. I find it somewhat weird that the left side of my face seems to be more affected than the right.

I’m not in pain. I am a bit depressed. Two months of a steady barrage of itching, tingling and numbness is frustrating. I’m losing hope that we’ll find something to alleviate the condition.

I’m not an anti-vaxer but I’m not willing to take the second injection as I don’t know what more it will do to me.

I’m fortunate that I have health insurance to help cover the costs of the doctor visits and prescriptions. Pfizer isn’t helping with that.

It’s been two months now and while I’ve accepted the fact that this may be my new normal, I’m angry about it. I’m certainly glad that most people who have taken the vaccine had no issues. But for those of us that did, I hate that what we are experiencing is so easily dismissed.

I share this – not to discourage anyone from getting vaccinated – but to make people aware that for some of us, there are real lingering side-effects.

Editing My Life

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I’m not sure where the first half of 2018 has gone.  It seems like only yesterday I was writing down my new year’s resolutions – some of which I’ve actually managed to maintain.  Others were abandoned/forgotten.  

July feels like a good time to re-evaluate my progress.  

I’m healthier.  I made walking/hiking part of my life.  I started strength training and while I need to be more consistent, my body is stronger.  I feel better than I have in years.  I’ve lost weight – not as much as I had hoped but I still have 6 months to go. 

One of the things I wanted to work on that still needs improvement is utilizing my “down-time.” I’ve spent time on my photography but there’s other things I enjoy.   So in this next half of the year, I’m going to finish the baby blanket I started crocheting.  I have a beautiful puzzle that needs to be put together.  After working all day, it’ll feel good to engage my mind on something I enjoy.  

During June, I spent a lot of time staining my deck – never realized how many pickets we had on that sucker.  I thought my hand was permanently stuck in the “holding the brush” position.  While the work was time-consuming, the pay-off has been so rewarding.  Most evenings I’m out on my hammock, torches burning, crickets singing, frogs croaking and me – doing my best to unwind.  I think the alone time has helped with my stress.

Life goes by so quickly.  It wasn’t that long ago that I was at ballgames cheering for my boys.  Now, two of them have children.  It’s quite challenging to build a new life (in a matter of speaking) when your world has changed.  I want to make sure that I’m living the best life I can.  I don’t want to look back with regret.  So that’s what July 2018 is for – editing my life and evaluating my progress. 

Overall:

I’m proud of my successes but there’s room for improvement.

How about you?  How’s things going with your resolutions/goals?

-Deb

 

 

 

My Little Victory

I came across this quote the other day:

The difference between who you are and who you want to be is what you do. 

                                                                                                                                                 -Bill Phillips

I’ve adopted this as my mantra.

When I turned 50, I promised myself that I’d make an effort to get in shape, to be a healthier me.  Only, the days turned into weeks and the weeks into months and 2017 became 2018.   I could see my fifty-first year on the horizon and I was quite disappointed with myself.  After all, I have a goal of living to be at least 103 years old.  But, poor health choices were sending me down an entirely different road.

Today begins week six of the health and wellness challenge that I promised myself I would complete.  After five weeks of making healthier food choices and doing some strength and cardio training, I’m happy to say that I’m on my way to becoming the person I want to be.   I’ve lost weight and inches and have more energy.

Making progress feels so much better than making excuses.

So – this is me having a little victory moment!

victory dance

I hope you experience a victory of your own this week!

Take care.

-Deb

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