I thought I felt strongly about not giving my kids flu vaccines. While they have received the recommended/required vaccines at every age, albeit with a whole lot of trepidation on my part, I've always held firm in my position that I didn't want them to have any extra ones. They've never had a flu shot, as I feel their bodies are better off facing and fighting illness than being pumped full of chemicals to do the job.
Or at least I felt that. Now I don't know.
This year's nasty flu outbreak is terrifying me, plain and simple. Everywhere, from birthday parties I attend to the news headlines I read, there are stories of people who are sick and dying from the flu.
Not just infants and elderly people, but strong and healthy people who are laid up for weeks, fighting this thing. Many are even being hospitalized. And I'm scared. Maybe for the first time more scared than I am of just getting them the vaccine.
Still I debate in my mind. Plenty of people who do get the vaccine are still getting the flu. Some say it's less severe, while others say it took them down just as hard. Researchers say it's 62 percent effective. Is that effective enough for me to give them the vaccine? I'm not sure, but when 20 children have already died from the flu, it makes want to do whatever I can to protect them.
So I'm leaning toward doing it. In fact, in the middle of writing this post, I called my pediatrician's office and made an appointment for both of them to get it Friday afternoon. I'm pretty sure I'll keep it.
Of course now that I've waited, and we're smack in the middle of the season, I actually have to take them into the hotbed of it all. Surely there will be flu germs hanging on every surface of the doctor's office, and that alone almost makes me not want to get it for them. If only I could roll in there in a bubble ... and everywhere else too for the next couple of months.
Has the flu outbreak made you rethink your anti-vax stance?
Image via NHSE/Flickr