Posted: Thursday, March 11, 2021. 6:23 pm CST.
By Rubén Morales Iglesias: Ever since day one of the COVID-19 pandemic in Belize, I’ve been waiting for today, the day I would be vaccinated.
And that day finally came. I had been waiting for it with a lot of anticipation.
I was called from the Ministry of Health and Wellness last week and I was told that I could be vaccinated on Saturday, March 6. But then, I was called again to tell there was a delay. By now you know the vaccines donated by India did not come until Monday.
Yesterday they called again and said, “Come tomorrow.”
And today, there I was. Ready.
As my friend and colleague William Ysaguirre said, “I got my shot! Hardly felt a thing! The needle was hardly a pinprick, the attending nurse knew what she was doing.”
I’ve been vaccinated before. The first few times my parents decided for me a million years ago. Afterward, I was vaccinated when attending Mount Carmel Primary School in Benque Viejo del Carmen. What for and who decided, I can’t remember, but what I remember is that it really was no big deal.
Afterward, I was vaccinated several times and I never had any problem doing it. After all, it was my own good. Never doubted.
I also got vaccinated when I got a USAID scholarship in 1989. I had to if I wanted the scholarship, but it was no problem.
Then, I guess I got vaccinated for international travel. And again, it was no problem.
So, why would it have been a problem now?
COVID-19 has been ravaging the world and I not ready to go. Not yet. I have too many reasons to live. And if I can help myself, I will.
I know some people don’t want to be vaccinated for some reason or the other. Some say they don’t know what’s in it, some say they’re just afraid, and so on.
Because there are billions of people in the world, there are a million reasons why not.
But I had no doubt.
So far, right now that I’m writing this, six hours after I got the shot, I feel good.
That doesn’t mean I might not feel something later on, but I trust that the vaccine is for my good. I know that some people may have some reactions, but mostly they are slight and go away after a few hours.
My wife and daughter already got vaccinated and they are ok. I’m waiting for my son to be vaccinated as well.
I have a 91-year-old aunt who says she wants to be vaccinated. So, I’m going to make sure she gets the shot.
All my other family, brother, and sisters, nephews and nieces, and other extended families, as far as I know, want to be vaccinated.
I’ve read extensively about the different vaccines, not because I distrust them, but simply to inform myself.
And from what I’ve read, the World Health Organization and countries around the world (that includes scientists at so many universities) have worked and continue working tirelessly to develop vaccines and other treatments, doing countless tests and while nothing is always 100 percent efficient, they have made a whole lot of progress and I’m benefitting from it.
The people at the Ministry of Health and Wellness are working tirelessly as well to get as many of us vaccinated, the least we can do is to follow the guidelines and protect ourselves.
While the decision is yours and not mine, and I respect that, I still want to encourage you to get the vaccine once it’s offered to you.
As for me, I can’t wait for my second shot in May.
I can’t wait.
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