Sometimes being a parent and completely responsible for another person’s well being is very stressful! Okay most of the time it is very stressful! This H1N1 thing really has me confused. On the one hand, we never get the flu vaccine. My son has an egg allergy so he can’t get it, and the rest of us just don’t really think about it too much. We have never gotten the flu a lot and it just hasn’t occurred to us to ever get vaccinated. When I started hearing about H1N1 I adopted the same attitude. No need for a vaccination, as really, we will all be okay. But the media is very specifically telling me we will NOT be okay, in fact we are all going to die if we don’t vaccinate. As a parent, I really don’t feel like taking that kind of a chance, so I am considering the vaccination.
However, my son still can’t get it due to his allergy – apparently at some point he will be able to get it through his allergist, but the ETA on that service being available is unknown. At the same time, my daughter doesn’t qualify for the age group of kids getting vaccinated yet, so we have to wait for that too. So the media keeps telling us these horrific stories about perfectly healthy children dying – which is insane and sad and makes me really hysterical – and at the same time, we can’t get either of our children vaccinated yet. Sigh.
On the other hand I am plagued with doubts about this vaccination and what its side effects are, and its effectiveness against the virus. The media is also publishing lots of doubt filled stories about both the safety and research and testing for the vaccine. I am basically churning all of this stuff around my head all the time, and making my whole family bathe in anti-bacterial gel constantly. The fitting end to this story is that this morning on the bus, a woman sat beside me and essentially coughed and phlegmed the whole way to work – for about 30 minutes. I tried desperately to just not touch anything, or even breathe too much, and then seriously washed my hands when I got off the bus. But now, who knows what will happen?