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My Vaccine Experience + New Semester of Grad School

Yesterday, I got my first dose of the vaccine! A sore left arm is the only side effect so far– it feels like I was sucker punched. Good news, though. I mastered the art of changing clothes with one hand, cooking with one hand, and carrying groceries with one hand, even if I have to take an extra trip or two. I also developed a mild headache in the evening and slept very well last night (an impressive feat for a bad sleeper like myself). The shot itself didn’t hurt at all, and was done quicker than I could realize that I was being poked.

The outdoor park where healthcare personnel gave vaccinations was also the location where they were doing Covid testing. And California is currently a hotbed of disease, so I was taking no chances. I stayed as far away from everyone as physically possible while still remaining in line. Afterwards, they told us to stay in a caution-taped area of a playground to see if we had an adverse reaction. Imagine a bunch of wary healthcare workers and one (1) 20-year-old standing by a playground, shifting from one foot to the other, trying to look too mature to sit on the swings. Meanwhile, about one hundred feet away, we could hear a cacophony of loud, guttural coughing. I waited the requisite 15 minutes and then bolted, like the germaphobe that I am.

Update: It has been about a week since the vaccine. My arm is back to normal. I can officially say that I feel great, and am excited to get the second dose in a month.

In other news, my doctoral classes officially resumed for the winter semester. Today was a really busy day. I had six hours of class. During slow moments, I was able to finish a report, and I also wrote a therapy progress report for one of the practicum sites I’m applying to.

In Intellectual Assessment, we discussed how we each define intelligence and named an intelligent person that we looked up to. Everyone in my class mentioned their fathers, even if their fathers were not particularly cerebral people, because business skills and people skills count as intelligence. I had to think for a while about who I consider smart. My grandpa is very smart– a hallmark of his intelligence is that I’m not even sure what he did for work, because it’s so top secret. Or maybe my friend Ariana, who is the only other girl I know to finish college at age 18 (she’s simultaneously enrolled in medical school and law school). Eventually, though, I decided on my friend Elizabeth, who started off as my tutor and became my friend. Teaching, I concluded, also takes a great amount of intelligence.

I went for a run in between classes, and decompressed in the evening by making hot cocoa with oat milk. It’s easy; you take a cup of milk and fill the cup 3/4 of the way (any more than that, and it will boil over). Then, you add a tablespoon of pure cocoa. The result is a delicate balance of warmth and sweetness. Look at me, I’m nearly a food blogger now. Anyway, that concludes a few days in my life. I hope yours were also good!


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Hi everyone! I started my doctorate in clinical psychology in fall 2020. A google search revealed that there are no current grad school blogs for psychology students. Anyway, I happen to know a girl who wants to document her journey to getting a doctorate (spoiler: it's me). Welcome. Hope you stay awhile!

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