This post was sponsored by Pfizer, but the views expressed are 100% my own.

This ongoing pandemic has taught me so many things about life, about the world, and about people. I’m still learning new things. One of the many things I’ve learned is to listen carefully to what people say before refuting their beliefs with mine. Most of the time, the concerns I hear are coming from a place of fear fueled by misinformation.

photo provided by SheKnows via Unsplash, source Hush Naidoo Jaid photography

I grew up with a dad who worked for the Caribbean Epidemiology Center, and I was surrounded by medical and scientific information about diseases and viruses since I was young. My dad’s organization was partnered with PAHO and the WHO. I was taught to respect science and the international scientific community. I believe that research and expertise are best trusted over anecdotes, videos, and vibes. I had to be vaccinated to even migrate into America, when I came here for college in 1998 – I have literally had a “vaccine passport” since then.

I believe that mRNA vaccines are safe and effective, and I’m glad I got mine and I’m ready for another booster as soon as I’m able to get one, tbh. It’s what I plan to do to keep myself as safe as possible, for as long as we continue to be in this pandemic. I was so relieved when my whole family around the world finally got access to mRNA vaccines too – now we’re more able to live a new normal, kinda. Slowly and carefully my relatives and I have returned to school and work, to outdoor gatherings and al fresco dining as we feel comfortable. Recently, one of my elderly relatives even got covid and recovered. They attribute that to having been vaccinated and boosted. I just had another, more medically hesitant relative in the hospital and I pray for their full recovery. I won’t get into further details, but please know that I have experienced too much loss over the last few years. I’ve seen too much sickness and sadness. This pandemic has changed me. Like the mRNA vaccine in this cute little video, I need therapy to process it all.

This pandemic has changed me. Like the mRNA vaccine in this cute little video, I need therapy to process it all.

I say all that to say this – we gotta keep ourselves healthy by whatever means possible. For me it’s a change in lifestyle, an increase in activity. I’m intentionally drinking more water, eating more veggies and immunity boosting foods, drinking smoothies again – all the things that I know are good for me, inside and out. And for me it also means staying up to date with my mRNA vaccine boosters as they become available – I had my first booster and I’m ready for another as soon as it’s available to my age group. I want to feel safe as possible, as I keep living my life.

It’s 2022. This isn’t our first rodeo anymore. We’ve seen our world change. And as numbers continue to rise around the world, I’m not letting down my guard anytime soon. I’m still trying to live my healthiest, most peaceful life. I’m avoiding large events until further notice. I limit my indoor gatherings as much as possible. And I’m continuing to wear my mask and wash my hands, and use my antibacterial cleansers at home. For me, safety and peace of mind means continuing to be protected, vigilant, and recognizing that I don’t know everything. The science is ever-changing and I will continue to listen to the experts. We gotta do what we need to do to stay safe now, and in the future. Right?