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The Terrible Twos- My 2nd COVID Injection Experience.


I decided to share my vaccination experience.


Being a healthcare provider and helping out with the OPs ("old people" is my jokingly reference to my parents. They know it & are not offended so please don't take that role), my personal preference of getting the vaccine or not was put to the side. I need to protect myself because as a younger person I can get it and have lasting side effects, many we still don't know, and more importantly I would never want to put someone's life in danger, especially my folks.


So early January I got dose 1 of the Moderna vaccination and had minimal side effects. Definitely a sore left arm and that's about it.


Three days ago I got the booster. Completely different story.


I had heard about people experiencing more significant side effects and was even advised by one of my employers to "plan it around the weekend so you can recover." I am glad I had the heads up. Here is how my day went:


  • ~8:00 am I received my 2nd vaccination at Petco Park by UCSD. Great staff & volunteers (thank you).

  • 8:30 am Beau and I walked around Fiesta Island for about an hour.

  • 10:00 am I went surfing on a small swell day. Not many people out because of the wind, I assume.

  • ~11:00 am I started to feel my left arm get really sore and had a little difficulty with doing a push up which is required to stand up on my log.

  • I go home to eat, shower and meet my colleague for a patient in downtown around 1:30 pm.

  • During this appointment, I started to feel tired - no biggie.

  • 3:00 pm I am home.

  • 4:00 pm The symptoms hit. Hard. I had a gnarly, strong, pulsing headache and the chills. I changed into sweats, put on socks, slippers and got under the covers. Here we go!

  • 6:00 pm The intensity of the chills grew as well as the headache. I took Tylenol. My joints started to ache and I did not want to get out of bed. I was hungry - I can always eat - so I made Top Ramen. Drank more water. I popped Tylenol and continued every 4 hours but feeling minimal benefits. It was hard to stand up straight due to the aches.

  • 8:00 pm I am full on sweating through the sheets although I am feeling extremely cold. I have the TV on as a distraction but just practice deep breathing. This goes on until 1 am. I truly consider going to Urgent Care as this is the most intense flu I have ever had but don't. Why not? Well, I knew the the cause and I knew I should be feeling significantly better the following day. This thought came across my mind twice.

  • 1:30 am-ish I fall asleep.

  • 5:30 am I wake up. Still achy with less of a headache and chills. Not as bad as the hours prior so definitely better.

  • 6:30 am I try to get ready to walk my dog. No go. A bit dizzy.

  • 8:00 am I make some protein coffee and walk the pooch around the block.

The symptoms slowly get better throughout the day. The soreness of the injection sites lasts for 3 days and all the body aches, chills, headache improve. Saturday I try to get back to my normal. I run and surf and still feel a bit weak. Sunday I feel like my old self. That's four days after!


I know my situation was or will be different or similar than yours. Hopefully, your experience is minimal to none and you get a day to rest in bed with a book or movie. If it is not, you are not alone. Many people do experience intense side effects and know it will be over.


There are medications you can take after receiving your vaccine - it may be worth speaking to your physician or checking out the link below.


It is still worth getting the vaccine. It is a glimpse of what COVID can do. Just know you'll be fine within 24 hours.


Best of health everyone!


Information about the Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine


COVID Vaccine After Care Sheet

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