Ever since COVID-19 vaccines arrived in my state, I’ve been trying to get my husband an appointment for a shot. He is qualified by age and health conditions, while I am neither. But I am fine with that.
What I am not fine with is the exhaustion and frustration from hours of staring at a screen, sitting in virtual waiting rooms, watching page refreshes and appointments go to other people while I am yet again locked out. I’m not doing this for me, you idiots, I want to scream at the screen. It’s so he doesn’t die before I have a chance to get him first.
And no, it isn’t just me. Tens of thousands of people, no matter how many devices they log into at once, cannot get an appointment either. The vaccine is offered in most counties here only at a major grocery chain pharmacy (the chain donated heavily to the current governor’s election, but his office claims that had no impact) and appointments are limited. And for many people, the chance of vaccination is out of reach, because they do not have Internet, or cannot maneuver the complicated signup process fast enough, or the grocery store has no stores anywhere nearby and they lack transportation.
I admit to decent computer skills and quick fingers, but neither has helped. And of course, The Husband has no understanding of why I cannot just get this done, and snapped at him in the middle of the driveway this morning when I referred to the “digital demonizing” of the vaccination process. That was probably a little off-kilter at the time, but thinking about it, there is nothing else that is fair about the virus. It has taken almost a half-million of our loved ones, many of whom had no underlying symptoms or age issues. It shut us in our houses, closed schools, stores, offices, restaurants, playgrounds, performance venues, sports stadiums, and vacation destinations. It has limited the time we spend doing the essential things like visiting loved ones, grocery shopping and personal care. It has divided us along personal lines, and a mask is seen less as a protective device and more like a political stand; its use or lack thereof causing threats and fights.
So maybe I should not be surprised that the battle to end the virus has in itself become a battle. From a single case of illness to millions, from one death to morgues so full most funeral directors are weeks behind on burials, should anyone be shocked anymore?