On the 17th of March, at about 3pm, I had my first COVID vaccination. For me it was Astra Zeneca. I thought for those on the fence and just so people can be prepared I would share my experience.
I stood in my line, 2 metres apart like always, and checked in with my centre. Waited in another line before before checking in in full indoors. Another little line and I was with the Royal Stabber, aka vaccinator. All of my line standing probably was about 15 minutes. The man jabbing me that day asked a few questions like if I had recently had any other vaccinations, was on blood thinners, or might be pregnant. Big old no with a curse on anyone trying to declare me knocked up (now I am imagining them asking 90 yo women if they might be pregnant). All good so the stabbing begins.
I am sure the needle was small but I didn’t look. Not a big fan of needles and they are not a mere sharp scratch for me but a burning pain (suspect it has something to do with my nickel allergy). Now most shots I have had have been a quick in and out situation but this one must be a bit bigger as it took a bit to get all the vaccine into my arm. It did hurt a bit, not gonna lie. As I had someone to drive me home they let me go immediately but if you were driving yourself they asked you to watch 15 minutes in case of reaction.
After the vaccination I walked back to the car and had to wait for my husband to finish his business meeting. So while other waited 15 minutes I was stuck for 40. In those first few minutes though I only noticed one thing, a creeping warmth radiating out from the vaccination site. It wasn’t painful or anything. Honestly, if I had been doing something at all I wouldn’t have noticed it but I was annoyingly bored.
I had not seen anything about when the side effects might start so I expected to feel bad within a few hours…that is not the case. I a managed to make dinner for the family ad relax in the evening. I was good for the rest of the day with only a tiny headache start near bedtime at 10. As I am a migraine sufferer, I took my migraine meds and ibuprofen and nipped that headache in the bud. I headed to bed happy all seemed good.
First thing in the morning I got on my iPad and was reading my Facebook when my mother in law messaged to see how I was. Did I have any side effects. I had to report that other than the small headache which I nipped in the bud I had been good. Then I got up and started my day. That is when I noticed my arm hurt. It was tender to touch and achey to use. Now I deal with hand, wrist and arm pain on a daily basis so I really did have to consider what was vaccine and what was just me but the extra minor ache and heaviness along with the tender to touch was definitely new. My usual pain is very electrical in nature and the vaccine side effects were more muscular/ joint.
As my morning went on I got more tired and achey. The achey was not severe or really painful. I just felt like I had run a half marathon in welly boots. I had run half marathons before so I know the exhausted,worn out, ache of which I speak. Around noon I headed up to my room and spent the next several hours just resting in bed. I did have a few minor headaches threaten to start but I had my ibuprofen regularly through the day ( I was a bit scared of a knock down, drag out migraine being triggered) and luckily that seemed to stop anything getting worse for my head beyond a bit of extra brain fog.
By dinner time I felt much better but I was not about to get up and cook. Alan ordered pizza for us as that is what I most wanted. Nothing healthy about it but it was vegan from Dominos and yummy. I continued to feel a bit better through the evening and went to bed.
The next day I think my arm was maybe a bit more sore but the rest of the symptoms had passed. I wasn’t achey anymore, I had no headaches, and I was probably feeling less brain fog than usual. This was a good thing as I also had to drive Joey to college which is about an hour round trip. I was concerned that some other side effects might pop up but they didn’t and I was all good.
It is now the 21st of March and my arm is less sore to the touch. Just a bit of acknowledgment of the great stabbing of 2021. It did stay sore all of the last 4 days but never anything too bad. Leaning against a wall on day 2 was ill planned but I shall survive. The bit of ache in my arm when moving it has been like having had a good arm workout with the weights. Nothing so bad as to stop me from getting my stuff done but enough to remind me of the jab.
Overall, I would have to say that for me the side effects were not so bad. I was mentally prepared for an excruciating migraine and horrible joint pain but that never happened. I must admit I am an expect the worst sort of person. So, if you are going in for your shot and are feeling a bit nervous I hope this helps. Everyone will react differently though so you might better or worse than me so always take with a grain of salt.