Today’s blog is not about Lake Maxinkuckee or conservation but I had such a positive experience yesterday that I wanted to share.

I received an email a few weeks ago through Town Gown & Lake (TG&L) about the need for non-medical volunteers to help with COVID vaccinations. 

URGENT MARSHALL COUNTY NEED:
COVID Vaccine Volunteers

Saint Joseph Health System needs your HELP bringing this deadly pandemic to an end.  With vaccine now in stock, SJHS’s goal is to vaccinate as many as possible AS FAST AS POSSIBLE, consistent with the State guidelines.  Each day matters in this race towards ending COVID-19.  As a result, SJHS is in immediate need of VOLUNTEERS to assist in their vaccine clinics. 

The email ended with
Please help us save lives.” 

I felt compelled to help.  I signed up for two shifts in January and completed my first one yesterday.   I was stationed at the end, after shots were administered, where people had to wait for 15 minutes to be monitored for side effects.  Everyone was so grateful and appreciative – both to be receiving the vaccine and just to be out and about!  We laughed, joked, shared stories, and generally had a wonderful time – which seems like an odd thing to say when receiving a shot! We had people staying longer than the required time because we were just enjoying ourselves and would lose track of time.  As some people left, they jokingly asked if they could come back the next day.

Trying to get people to take the early morning slots for their second dose was hilarious,   Given the option of a 7:00 am appointment, those retirees would clutch their chest and say “Honey, I’m retired.  Don’t you have an afternoon spot?”   

Since the current phase is mostly for 70 and older, I saw adult children bringing their parents, long-time married couples, proudly sharing how long they had been together, a few siblings who still torment each other and sadly, some people by themselves, who had lost their spouse and were alone.

“They say a person needs just three things to be truly happy in this world: someone to love, something to do, and something to hope for.”

― Tom Bodett

We are bombarded with so much negativity in the news right now but yesterday I saw love, joy and compassion for an entire afternoon.  It was intoxicating and I want more of that so I signed up for 3 more shifts in February. 

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