I was raised vaccine hesitant. Now I’m double vaxxed against COVID-19 | CBC News

Then, one day in the early 2000s, I fell ill with a low-level fever. I developed a vicious, strangling cough that would leave me gasping for air as I hovered over the toilet bowl. It lasted for weeks. The residual effects lasted for months. I just couldn’t get well.

A visiting doctor from the N.W.T. knew what she was seeing. It was whooping cough. I was shocked. I’d had the pertussis vaccine in childhood. She explained that the protection wears off. It was then I realized what those booster shots were all about.

So much of what my father knew from his years as a physiotherapist has been proven right. But on the flip side, when Dad suffered a heart attack at age 74, I saw him cry before his bypass operation, apologizing to my stepmom for not being willing to take the cholesterol-lowering medication his doctors kept prescribing in vain over the years.

After his bypass, he dutifully took the once-snubbed pills, and even began to get flu shots. He lived almost to his 92nd birthday. COVID caught him a year ago in October 2020, in the midst of the second wave. If there had been a vaccine then, there is no question that he would have taken it.

It’s a shame that it took an illness and a heart attack to knock the stubbornness out of me and my Dad.

Today, I honour my father’s death and memory by taking the vaccine, listening with kindness to the vaccine-hesitant and then telling them my story.

Rachel Grantham arrived in Whitehorse, Yukon in 1989. She is a choral conductor and music educator by training, a filmmaker by happenstance, and a government employee by necessity. She lives with gratitude in the traditional territory of the Kwanlin Dün and Ta’an Kwach’an Council.

Source: I was raised vaccine hesitant. Now I’m double vaxxed against COVID-19 | CBC News