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LETTER: Why I need YOU to get vaccinated

'I, and all immuno-compromised people of Guelph and around the world, need YOU to get vaccinated'
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GuelphToday received the following letter from Kristine Perz regarding getting the COVID-19 vaccine:

COVID-19 has been a time of upheaval and uncertainty for everyone. I go back and forth from being scared and bracing for the worst to being hopeful that it will just work out.

This is a roller coaster ride that I have been on for over 15 years as someone living with MS. There have been times that I think that everything is fine and times that I feel hopeless and defeated.

I felt great hope last March when I got my first dose of the vaccine and was ready to get my second dose any day now. The rug was pulled out from underneath me when my neurologist told me about new studies out of Israel that are showing a low immune response to the vaccine for MS patients on disease modifying therapies.

I have just started a new treatment to help control my MS after the worst relapse I have had thus far. I am just starting to get my groove back and accepting the damage from the attack. My new therapy is working.

To get the second dose I would have to stop for three months to give my immune system a fighting chance of mustering some positive response. Key word some. The percentage is low and I don’t think I can accept those odds. I need to have my immune system lowered to keep the MS at bay and I need to be protected from COVID. That is where everyone with a healthy immune system comes in.

I, and all immuno-compromised people of Guelph and around the world, need YOU to get vaccinated. Not think about it, not debate it and not wait and see how it goes. I was the vaccination cheerleader after I got my first dose! I was the first in my family, at the school I teach at and in my circle to get the vaccine.

I cheered and even sent flowers to others to congratulate them on joining the 'COVID Crushers' after their first jab. Little did I know at the time that fast forward a few months, and I have just appointed myself the head loud mouth cheerleader for the cause.

If you are on the fence I don’t want to give you a nudge in the right direction but I want to push you off! Getting the vaccine helps me and helps protect us all. So just do it. I have to rely on herd immunity. I wanted to be part of that but since I can’t I will get on my soapbox till we get it done!

Kristine Perz
Mother, wife, Grade 1 teacher and head loudmouth cheerleader