This is a week where I give thanks. Thanks for the country I was born into, thanks for freedom, for wide open spaces, for beauty. (And this year I’m especially mindful for those who have not experienced freedom).

This year I’ve been especially grateful for all those who work in healthcare, for the gift of being vaccinated.

Vaccines have become a difficult conversation for many, and I don’t want to be one of those voices pressing my views or pushing guilt or shame. We’ve seen too much of that, and it saddens me.

I’ve seen both sides of the spectrum, having friends with underlying medical conditions and encouraged by their doctor not to get the vaccine. The cost to them? Being separated from their grandchildren, scolded by their children. This is painful.

I don’t get angry easily, but when I heard (on more than one occasion) that people were told they would be going to hell if they received the vaccine, I was appalled. It is one thing to believe such a thing, quite another to use it as a weapon. The God I love must also be saddened at such behaviour.

I’m simply going to tell my story. It is mine to tell.

I was nervous to receive the vaccine. I believed it was the right thing to do, given that I work in a hospital.

But I also have a challenging medical history and felt vulnerable. So I talked to a number of knowledgeable people, educated and wise.

Of course there is risk to everything, even getting into your car each morning! That is why you sign waivers before surgeries or other crazy adventures.

I received my vaccine early because of my role. I felt it was the right thing to do, to protect myself and those around me. The week I was to get it, I phoned the Covid information line to get more information. I was encouraged to talk to my doctor about my concerns. I tried, but she was on vacation.

Praying, I went to work that day, and ended up talking to one of the senior doctors at the hospital. This was providence! I shared my concerns and he was able to reassure me that I would be ok.

I drove to my appointment, frustrated with my nervousness but talking to God. I just love that the One who created us, loves and is present with us. I also believe God has given gifts to scientists and medical leaders to help us, and this has been proven in the past. Vaccination has saved many lives. I reflected on all of this on my way!

On arrival, I waited in line, continuing to pray quietly. I was called to a little room where two nurses were giving out the shots. “I know you”, the nurse in charge said, and immediately I recognized her as a pastor’s wife I knew in the community. She too, a prayerful woman!

She acknowledged my fears and we went over my medical history and all my questions, She told me I was good to go! What peace came over me at that moment, and I knew that this appointment was arranged by God. I felt loved and cared for. And this nurse was so skilled that I didn’t feel a thing.

This is my story. I hope it will encourage others. I am fully vaccinated and grateful for this gift.

And one day, when this Pandemic is a distant memory, may people say of us, we were known by our love.


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