I always weighed around the low to mid 80kgs, something I maintained by eating a clean diet. But, just to be honest, I don’t mind the odd night on the beers! Other than asthma as a child, I’ve never had any health problems, only sports-related injuries.
I’m not anti-vaccines but I am anti-mandating of this particular vaccine and 100 percent pro-choice. I was one of the last retail business owners in the region to hold the line for the 262 days of lockdown. The police visited our shopping strip a number of times. I was trying to get an exemption from having to have the vaccine and tried to get this from a few different doctors. They wouldn’t give me one and so I was left with no choice. Looking back, I wish I’d fought even harder at the time. But I needed to feed my family and that’s what it came down to in the end.
I got vaccinated on 18th October 2021 in my right arm. I didn’t feel anything much. I just took the day off, went to bed early that night and continued on. Two days after being vaccinated I was out trying to surf on a hydrofoil in waist high waves and I couldn’t catch a wave because my heart was hurting in a way I’d never felt before. I had to stop. I felt a sharp stabbing pain with every heartbeat. The pain was radiating through my chest and lungs making it very difficult to breathe.
I went to the beach, waited half an hour, then tried again. The same thing happened. Immediately I thought I’d drawn the short straw with the vaccination because I had heard of similar cases already. For the rest of the week, I didn’t surf or do anything strenuous out of fear of something bad would happen. Come Sunday at 1:30pm I was in my shop with my daughter when the stabbing pains came out of nowhere. They started intensifying to
the point that I felt I was going to have a heart attack. I had just been sitting there and my heart started beating out of my chest and I was short of breath.
I had to get my friends from the shop next door to shut my shop for me while I drove myself to ED. On arrival they took me straight in. I mentioned that I had the vaccine and I that I thought I was having an adverse reaction. They didn’t want to associate my symptoms to the vaccine, but they ran an ECG and took my bloods and X-ray. All the tests came back clear and they discharged me 8 hours later and told me to take painkillers. My discharge papers stated that I had chest pain from the Pfizer vaccine.
I continued on with life, taking painkillers for the pain and then suddenly, new symptoms arose. As well as the heart pains, I started to experience what felt like the organs on the left side of my torso erratically spasming all day long for days. Nothing was improving and I ended up in hospital a second time on the 26th October 2021. This time they did more tests: D-dimer, troponin, ECG, X-ray, ultrasound and more bloods. The doctors were quite helpful this time, however all my tests came back clear and they let me go, documenting that this was an adverse reaction to the vaccine. I was prescribed Nurofen and Panadol.
Between hospital visits I visited a GP, a lung specialist and a cardiologist, none of whom were really much help. I was starting to feel lost and defeated. My symptoms were worsening, I was gaining weight rapidly and losing out financially because I was unable to function in my day-to-day life.
On the 9th November a cardiologist was recommended through friends speaking up on Instagram. He has been a life saver. He was very receptive to this being an adverse reaction. He diagnosed me with pericarditis and put me on colchicine, Aspirin and Nurofen and gave me a one month exemption from having the second vaccination. He told me to stop exercising for three months and sent me off on a roller coaster of tests which are still happening as I write this.
It got to a point I was spending more time in appointments than I was at work. I ended up in hospital again for the third time on the 17th November 2021. I again felt like I was going to have a heart attack and it was too overwhelming to ride out. It felt like it was a life-or-death situation, so I didn’t feel like there was any other choice but to go to hospital.
This time I was admitted overnight. They ran a bunch of the same tests and I ended up with the same results. The medical people were helpful, but they didn’t know what more they could do for me and they seemed lost because by this time they had seen so many other people who were in a similar position. They just prescribed some different meds: ibuprofen, Endone, pantoprazole and paracetamol.
For the last four and a half months since my last hospital visit, I’ve been seeing a long list of specialists to try and heal myself. I came down with COVID-19 in early December. If it
was up to me in a non-coerced situation, I would have chosen to get the virus over the vaccination. The reaction I have had to the vaccine far outweighs the symptoms of COVID. The same goes for most of my surfing mates who have had COVID and are unvaccinated. They are paddling rings around me now.
I’m still experiencing symptoms daily. My heart is in endless pain, although it is very slowly easing. The stabbing pains come and go, and they are now about a seven or eight out of ten. I go through waves of extreme fatigue every few days. I had extreme brain fog that went on for a few months but is starting to clear up now. I have been surfing a little bit more and my fitness is very slowly improving. But my heart hurts all the time and I fear having a heart attack and drowning. I feel like I am constantly facing my own mortality. More than anything I’m worried about leaving my family behind.