Covid Confessions: first shot!

I got vaccinated today. I went to Utrecht Jaarbeurs, one of the largest locations to get vaccinated in the country. It’s used for big expo’s and conferences, so all in all I walked about 1,5 kilometres from the parking lot to the needle, via the waiting room (the mandatory 15 minutes) and back. I never had to wait in line, though. My pink dot meant I was selected to receive Moderna.

Getting my first shot really feels like progress. Many others get their vaccines as well and new cases have plummeted the past few weeks. More things are allowed again and though I’m still cautious (last week three classes in Daughter’s school had to quarantine) I arranged a visit to the Nijntje (Miffy) museum (also in Utrecht) for the three of us to celebrate this small yet significant step.

So we had our own small vaccination party today. It was a wonderful day.

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Door |2021-06-12T22:18:47+02:0012 juni 2021|deze dag|0 Reacties

Covid Confessions

Another month passed. More people got sick. More people died. More people got vaccinated.

And in my own life nothing much changed. Except perhaps for today. This is the first day since mid-December that both the Man and I can work a full day. After school care reopened this week. To celebrate this new step Daughter fell ill. She had a fever on Monday and slept most of the day. Yesterday she was back on her feet, fit enough for yet another corona test (number four), and this morning (it’s Wednesday when writing this) she was declared free of covid-19 and fit enough to go to school. And after school care afterwards. For the first time in four months I feel a little less guilty about taking 1,5 hours off during the middle of the day.

Writing that, I realize that the past year I constantly felt the need to be very time efficient. There’s only so much work you can do half-time. When Daughter finally got back to school, the Man and I still had to negotiate who would take care of her between 2PM, the time school ends, and 7PM, bedtime. Every hour not taking care of Daughter therefore had to be spent productively. I guess that is taking its toll, especially considering I normally reload through month long Summer holidays. We didn’t spent a month abroad last year and this year travel abroad during Summer is still very uncertain. It makes me long for Swiss mountains, or Copenhagen shopping sprees more than ever.

I currently go through the daily motions of work, learn, play, eat, sleep, repeat. I can’t say I feel excited about much right now. Next week cafes and restaurants are allowed to reopen their outdoor seating areas, but only between noon and 6PM. The idea of grabbing a beer and being surrounded by other people is very attractive. The reality is that the number of people getting infected every day is still high. Especially in the age group under 30. Guess who is most likely to serve me a beer at the cafe. That thought killed my enthusiasm rather quickly.

So far I’ve been able to keep covid-19 at bay and I’m doing my best to keep it that way. I’m not scared of dying, I’m scared of getting long-covid. In September I want to move at full speed again, not rehabilitate to be able to walk up the stairs in my home. Therefore I’ll just keep going through the unexciting motions. I’ve managed to do it so far. I’ll manage some months more until I get vaccinated.

Speaking of vaccinations, my father (79) received his second shot on April 16th, my mother (76) received her first shot on April 7th. Today’s guesstimate is 4,7 million jabs given to people (on 17,5 million inhabitants). Indeed, we’re still slow, though speed of vaccination is finally ramping up in this country. I can’t wait to get mine.

A family member of mine got reinfected two weeks ago (after first catching it last fall). Luckily his body took care of the virus just like any other virus, but it’s a good reminder to never assume you can’t carry the virus.

For now I keep calm and study on.

Door |2021-04-21T17:06:17+02:0021 april 2021|flow|0 Reacties

Vrouwen blijven onzichtbaar

Het is natuurlijk absoluut simpel om te registreren of een deelnemer aan een klinische studie fysiologisch man of vrouw is. Als je dan een nieuw ontwikkeld vaccin mag testen op pandemische schaal zijn de getallen ook best snel statistisch significant. Hoe logisch is het dan om ook even een kolom m/v op te nemen in je database van gerapporteerde bijwerkingen? Ik dacht dat medische onderzoekers allemaal wel een kopie van Invisible Women op hun nachtkastje hebben liggen. Wat een naïeve gedachte van mij zeg.

[…] de vaccinmakers hebben het element ‘sekse’ goeddeels genegeerd in het vaccinonderzoek en de behandelmethoden van Covid-19. Zo had geen van de gepubliceerde klinische proeven van vijf coronavaccins de opgetreden bijwerkingen uitgesplitst naar sekse.

Hoe vrouwen vergeten werden in het Covid-19-onderzoek (bron: Trouw)
Door |2021-04-08T21:14:02+02:008 april 2021|datascience, vrouw|0 Reacties

Covid Confessions

It’s Wednesday Jan 6th 2021 and today, as last country in the EU, the first person got vaccinated. A nurse working in a care home got the honour. Today is also the day word got out that lock-down, the unintelligent kind, probably gets extended by at least two weeks. Considering the number of people who still get infected on a daily basis that doesn’t come as a surpise to me. Still, I’m not looking forward to more weeks of keeping Daughter entertained while working and starting my data science course later this month. It will be hectic and not the most fun period for Daughter, the Man and myself.

Somehow people feel less urgency to keep their distance. Most people I speak to have been visiting multiple addresses during the holidays. When you visit multiple people over multiple days, one person can easily infect two or more people. Who then might infect others in their household. Who might have visited others before showing any signs of infections. And the virus spreads happily ever after.

The Man, designated groceries shopper, notices people feel less inclined to keep their distance to others inside the supermarket. Perhaps this is indeed a psychological effect of wearing face masks, giving people a false sense of safety. Others have reported to avoid certain supermarkets at certain hours as they’re overly crowded.

I hear people talk about going to the office, but only a few days a week. I wouldn’t take that risk. Especially not when working together with people in their (early) twenties, who behave their age (drink in life), or their parents (between fifty and sixty). These two groups are overly represented in the infection rates.

As long as people keep doing what they’ve been doing the pas month, we will be in this situation at least until Spring. Or however long it takes for the Sun to start shining and burn the virus from the air with stronger UV radiation.

At some time during Spring or Summer 2020 I played with the idea of renting a place somewhere in Europe for a longer period, so we could at least change surroundings for a while. That idea is back. Go somewhere warmer. Or somewhere where there is snow. Of course that will never happen. But one is allowed to imagine.

Door |2021-01-06T19:19:23+02:006 januari 2021|flow|0 Reacties
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