I’m old enough to remember the 1955 polio outbreak, the long lines of kids waiting for their vaccine sugar cube. I can only imagine my parent’s fear. But they had already lived thru scarlet fever, mumps, diptheria, whooping cough. They had already lost friends and family and felt gratitude for the science behind vaccine. We’ve all been enjoying a human experience relatively devoid of survival-based fear, which has been part of the human story since we peeked our heads out of the cave. Perhaps we’ve become pleasantly soft. What an under-appreciated gift this chapter of softness was. Now we’re smack dab in the reality of what it has meant to be human for eons. Everything repeats. Nothing is certain. Everything changes.
Take a look at this week’s sessions. Being embodied is one way to support a challenged immune system. And learn to be with change. Links HERE
Feb 10 9:00am & 6:30pm
Thursday Feb 11 10:00-11:30am
Friday Feb 12 10:00-11:30am
Saturday Feb 13 10:00-11:30am
Sunday Sweat Your Prayers FUNDRAISER
Valentine’s Day Feb 14 10:00-11:30am
Zoom in your home
Live in the garden
Saturday Feb 27 10:00am-noon
(916) 267-5478 for appointment
Reporting from the vaccine front line here, first injection doing magic more than a week now. Local soreness has dissipated and there is this other-worldy fluctuating lassitude. Chalk it up to the relentless emotional and mental suffering we are all riding? Maybe. Almost a year, folks. Really though…what is my body up to? How is it building a viral defense wall? Since most of us will eventually end up waging this internal battle and because I’m a certified science geek, I’m gonna break it down here.
The new buzz technology with this vaccine is messenger RNA. MRNA is already found in human cells, genetic material our bodies use to produce protein. Both Pfizer and Moderna vaccines use a synthetic mRNA. True to it’s messenger calling, it instructs the body’s own cells to create a coronavirus protein called spike. Our intelligent bodies recognize spike as an invader and mobilize antibody forces against it. Here’s the magic: if these same antibodies encounter COVID-19 later, they recognize and remember. And then they whip into action to destroy it before it can cause illness.
To make sure mRNA slides easily into cells, they’re greasy bubble coated with lipid nanoparticles. These weird bubbles alert the fast-acting immune cells which are on constant look out for foreign matter. Once the immune cells spot the greasy bubbles, they sound the alarm with cytokines. The cytokine commanders recruit other immune cells directly to the injection site. A swollen sore arm is sign #1 your body is doing exactly what you want it to do.
A healthy immune system is a quick but not very long-lived first responder. It sputters out a couple days post-injection. But not before it passes the baton to the adaptive immune system. This network creates antibodies for the long run. These soldiers stay on the alert, ready to attack if Covid-19 enters the body again. This system needs a few days to study the spike and get ready. By the time the second injection happens, it’s totally amped up, itching for a fight, ready to react way faster. Check out this incredible intelligence—some of the soldier cells are suspicious and hang out at the injection site, waiting for the invader’s return to the scene of the crime.
And when that second injection arrives, our brilliant immune system remembers and takes it even more seriously this time around. Our body’s reaction to dose #2 varies greatly but can be flu-like—fever, aches, chills, exhaustion, the works. Side effects are usually short-lived and pale in comparison to the real deal. Remember COVID-19 can be utterly debilitating. Just as alarming as the 2 million deaths is the sometimes months-long, sometimes unresolved ongoing constellation of hanger-on symptoms.
Fear of side effects is not a good reason to forgo the vaccine. Injection side effects insure us our immune system is activating, though some will feel no side effects at all. Rest assured…body still working! We are each so unique in our response. Nevertheless, first shot stimulates immunity, second one reminds the system the threat is big time. Let’s the body know in no uncertain terms this peril will require the strongest immune soldiers for any upcoming battle.
Given this incredible internal deployment, it’s no wonder I’m a bit tired sometimes. My body is hard at work ensuring my future safety. Grateful it can just do it’s thing and continue to support me in doing mine. Short video describes the heart-based sessions that span this week, culminating in Valentine’s Day Sweat Your Prayer’s fundraiser on Sunday. Give your precious body what it needs and come practice with me if you’re able.