Apr 16, 2021
‘As someone who has had COVID, I would 100 percent say, get the vaccine’
Jim Borodawka, 47, a Lowell business owner, was initially unsure whether he would get a COVID-19 vaccine. But a January bout with the virus helped spur Jim to get his first dose of the Pfizer vaccine recently with a second shot scheduled for the end of April. Borodawka discussed the effects of COVID and why he decided to get vaccinated, in a Coverage interview.
“My family and I all got COVID in January and I still have no taste or smell. My wife has experienced respiratory issues and has had to see the doctor several times.
“I am somebody who walks four to five miles every night. When I go for my walks now, I feel like it’s a little more of a struggle catching my breath. My office is on the 4th floor and I always take the stairs. By the time I get to the top, I am huffing and puffing and it’s something I have never experienced before. And that’s completely attributable to having COVID. It’s the only thing that changed in my life.
“The long-term ramifications, I don’t even want to think about.
“It’s a tough thing when you talk about the vaccinations because there are so many different feelings, whether it’s religious or whatever it might be.
“My daughter was anti-vaccine to the point of considering a career change if she had to be vaccinated in order to keep her job. But fast-forward a few months and she has been vaccinated and seen countless others vaccinated in her job in health care, and had not heard of any symptoms.
“You’re talking about somebody who’s on the front lines, is educated, is meeting about COVID every day at work. My wife and I were fortunate to have her as a resource and as soon as she said ‘I am going to get a vaccine,’ that definitely had an effect.
“And having gone through the experience of having COVID also pushed us to say, ‘We don’t want to deal with this again.’ We knew the vaccine could help protect us.
If anybody came to me and said ‘what do you think I should do?’ as someone who has had COVID and had a dose of the vaccine, I would 100 percent say ‘get the vaccine.’
“I would say better to be safe than sorry, especially now with all these variants, it might be getting worse or deadlier. We are in an unprecedented situation.”
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PHOTO OF JIM BORODAWKA BY NICOLAUS CZARNECKI