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20856219 tn?1541792336

Am I the only one still masking and anxious?

So while so many people are out and about, shopping and vacationing, I'm still anxious. I hear things like Delta variant, and about the cruises with cases, and wonder why people are back doing everything, "normally". I still wear masks at the store, or crowded places. I won't eat inside at restaurants.

I am fully vaccinated with Moderna. I know I have among the best protection there is. But I'm still anxious about it. Am I the only one?
8 Responses
134578 tn?1614729226
People had to be at least slightly anxious, in order to develop the habits of masking, hand-washing and avoiding crowds in the first place. I wouldn't expect a vaccination to make all that new habit and concern go away overnight; it might take a little while.

That said, once vaccinated, expect to feel at least a little bit safer when out and about. (Even given the new variants, which so far have been shown to be effectively addressed by the Covid vaccines. And they think they can tweak the vaccines to address future variants.) If you've been vaccinated for a while and don't notice *any* change in your calmness level when you need to do something routine like go to the grocery store, you might address the anxiety with a counselor.
Avatar universal
You are absolutely correct in your thinking, and no, this isn't anxiety.  Anxiety is about irrational or exaggerated concern.  You are actually up to date on current information, which is, no vaccine is 100% effective, effectiveness does indeed go down, sometimes way down, with certain variants, and because vaccines are currently rare, not common, in most of the world and in many parts of the US variants are still going to arise constantly.  The virus will move to where it can survive, and it will adapt to survive.  On the other hand, you can't hide forever, and the virus is very likely to be with us forever.  You don't hide because of all the other infectious diseases you can get, so at some point we have to learn to live with this virus or miss out on a lot of living.  I think masking indoors is still the appropriate thing to do, and I think CDC jumped the gun on telling folks they don't have to wear them if they're vaccinated.  I believe there was inevitably some politics in this because humans today don't hunt and gather, they work for pieces of paper or computer code that enables them to get food, shelter, etc.  We can't therefore hide forever.  It would be a lot easier if Americans who do have current access to a vaccine any time they want one now would do the right thing for humanity and just get one, but they aren't doing that and it has become a political issue so we're not going to reach herd immunity any time soon and perhaps never will.  We can hope, however, but then there's the rest of the world where the variants are now coming from and they don't have access to vaccines because only the rich can afford that and because other countries also have many people who won't get vaccinated.  I hope this doesn't last -- we all used to just get our vaccines, but that isn't the case anymore.  So in sum, your thinking is perfectly rational, not at all anxiety, but you can't let reasonable trepidation ruin your life forever.  At some point we will all have to assume some risk.  In the meantime, think of the benefits -- masking and some social distancing when you don't know those around you will also protect you from the flu and colds, so there's that.  For now, don't consider yourself odd, consider yourself well informed and judge your own tolerance of risk and don't let it keep you from enjoying being alive.  Peace.
20899328 tn?1596332780
i am not vaccinated, but i am still anxious and mask up, even if i don't have to be in certain places. i am terrified what this is going to do to me in the long haul.
5 Comments
Is there a reason you haven't been vaccinated? Even wearing a N95 mask didn't make me feel 100% safe, before.
i am sorry to hear that you didn't feel 100% safe wearing an N-95 mask before. as far as why i am not vaccinated? please don't take this the wrong way, but i don't feel anyone has to give that information out (as to why) to anyone.
No, you clearly don't have to give out that information. I was only asking because I was wondering if you couldn't get to one of the sites. (Even now, some areas are less well served by vaccine locations than others.)

Regarding not feeling totally safe even in an N95 mask, in the earlier days of the pandemic, I was always glad to get out of small spaces with lots of people, even when wearing a mask. (Especially if my glasses were fogging up, which would hint that since my breath was getting out, it was likely outside air could get in.) Once I had to wait with my son in the waiting area of a nurse treatment room along with a guy who was coughing and hacking, and even though my son and I were both masked, it was still nerve wracking. I knew the odds of getting Covid were not large and the chance of dying even less, but my husband is high risk and my son is just a kid, and I didn't want to leave his care to the four winds if I even had to be hospitalized. It would have been less worrisome if I was responsible for nobody but me. Now, knowing that it would be a really rare to catch Covid after being vaccinated (barring a new variant that resists the vaccine) eases the background concern that was always present (if at a low level) before.
ANNIEBROOKE: Thank you for the response. I commend you on receiving your vaccine and getting us all one step closer to herd immunity.
anxiouswhispers:  my first thought, too was why you haven't been vaccinated yet.  Of course, like Annie, I realize you're under no obligation to tell anyone, but if I weren't vaccinated, I'd feel very anxious myself because even though a lot of mask mandates have been lifted for those who are vaccinated, we have no idea who really is/isn't vaccinated.  

I'm fully vaccinated and don't often wear a mask, these days, but I do carry one with me and if I get into a situation in which I feel uncomfortable or have any reason at all to suspect someone might not be vaccinated or might be sick, I'll put it on.
207091 tn?1337709493
Going with what Pax said, and this not being anxiety, I'm still cautious. I feel a lot like you do, Callalily. I am still not eating in restaurants, and a masking inside - though that's just as much now about not wanting a cold or the flu, which are coming back, as much as it is covid and variants.

I'm also fully vaxxed with Moderna, and feel pretty good about that, but we still don't know how long immunity lasts, when/if (probably when) we'll need a booster, etc.

So yeah, I get it. :)
Avatar universal
No. I feel the same way as you do -- I too am fully vaccinated via Moderna and still use a disposable mask layered beneath a cloth mask every time that I set foot outside my door. Not a thing will change for me until I am convinced that the Delta variant has run its course, which does not appear to be anytime in the near future. People can call me paranoid, but I want to give myself the best chance at remaining healthy as possible. You are doing the smart thing, in my opinion.
Avatar universal
I'm vaccinated and still incredibly anxious and I'm not sure why. I think it's just been a long stretch of anxiety for me it's hard to get out of that loop. I keep telling myself " it's all in the past" I live by myself, and retired, so I don't have much distraction from it. I notice when I'm busy, I'm better..I'm hoping I've time it goes away. My Dr even wanted to put me on Zoloft, but I've resisted it. I take valium every few days and that helps , but I realize it's addictive and resist it as much as possible.. I don't mask up because I feel it helps getting back to being normal, and after all that's what the vaccine is for...I'd love to hear any tips people have to get rid of this...I was never like this before, bit 1.5 years of being cooped up gas gotten to me
1 Comments
I think after 1.5 years of being like hermits or having to be constantly concerned, it's harder than one would expect to be social like before. I have a birthday coming up, and when in other years there would be a party with all my extended family, this year I can't even think why I want a party. Some would say this is a good thing, it erases all the superficial busy-ness we used to fill our lives with and we can choose the things that really matter to us and do them only. But I don't trust my disinterest, that feels almost like depression. Maybe time will bring back the conviviality and impulse to see each other.
649848 tn?1534633700
I do believe there's some anxiety involved in still being scared, but we do know that there are variants out there and don't know what's going to happen with them.  I agree with Pax that we can't hide from it, any more than we've been able to hide from other diseases that could be equally deadly.  

We've all been isolated for such a long time and the virus is so prevalent in the news, I'm almost beginning to think it's causing a type paranoia.   My opinion, only!!  :-)

I had no qualms about getting vaccinated, but I do sometimes worry about the people who aren't vaccinated and because so many are unwilling to say, we have no idea how many of the people we come in contact with are, or aren't, vaccinated.  It's the ones who refuse to vaccinate, or mask up, that worry me.  I wonder about people hacking and coughing in the grocery store beside without a mask... If they're sick, they should be home.  I've actually put on a mask in an instance in which someone was acting/looking very ill beside me in the grocery store because I didn't want what they had, even it wasn't COVID.  

All of that said, I do think we have to try to move on, safely  There are so many diseases we can get, we'd have to live in a bubble in order to avoid everything.
1 Comments
I agree with Barb.  The news is so much about covid.  This is how it should be, it is the job of the news to cover the most serious immediate issue we face, so I'm not blaming the news media for this. but it does make it hard to forget about it.  I'm fully vaccinated with the Moderna. and I'm still wearing a mask when I go indoors in a store or such.  I've never worn one outdoors, so that was never an issue for me.  I was a bit shocked the other day when I was leaving a store and an elderly woman came bounding towards me coming in not wearing a mask.  I thought and still think, vaccine or no vaccine, that was stupid.  Again, none of the vaccines are 100% effective, and some of them aren't a whole lot better than the flu vaccine, which is not very effective at all.  I just heard that the Chinese vaccine countries are having surges in covid, so again, it does matter which vaccine you get although it doesn't seem to matter as much if your only concern is ending up in intensive care or dying, they're all good at preventing that.  I think some more time is needed before we toss our masks, and judge it by the situation, and that, if you're not nervous about covid, you're probably brain dead.  Some things we really need to be hyper aware of so we do something about them.  But never to the point our lives become a living hell.  Peace.
Avatar universal
Because you are sensible and know that viruses mutate (struggle for existence and survival of the fittest). Believe me I am same
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