My mum is about the most robust 81-year-old you're ever likely to meet. She lives in a farmhouse in Stroud. Rarely gets sick. Avoids doctors like the plague.
She still winches her sulky onto the back of her ute and loads her pony onto a float and sets off around the NSW countryside for carriage-driving events. She's been known to sleep in her float in the middle of winter in Tumut. You get the picture.
But even she was wary of COVID-19 last year. She used to work in the Newcastle uni biology department and understands a bit about viruses and sterile procedures.
She stayed put for months, didn't venture far from home and didn't risk mixing with her beloved grandchildren.
My father is also 81 and has had a series of health setbacks in the past two years. He has had most of a cancerous lung removed, among the procession of illnesses.
I didn't hesitate to get the vaccine.
My GP gave me the shot last weekend. The jab in my upper arm stung slightly more than most needles, but not much. I had no side-effects. I go back in 12 weeks for the second dose.
As Victoria keeps showing us, the virus is not going away in a hurry, and many virologists and epidemiologists fear an unvaccinated population will remain exposed to a large outbreak.
The kind of outbreak that will put my mum and dad at risk, and possibly my children, friends and colleagues.
Even without another surge in cases, our borders will remain closed and parts of our economy stricken until enough of us are vaccinated.
We've avoided the worst of the pandemic because we can co-operate with each other and because we still trust our government enough to act collectively.
Now we need the same response when it comes to the vaccine.
If you have doubts, listen to your doctor and not the keyboard warriors.
The UK has been very fast at rolling out the vaccine, and the results have shown how it has stopped people dying. In mid-January, UK deaths peaked at 1800 people a day. Now they're down to single figures.
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