It will only hurt for a minute

I will admit, I don’t do shots; mainly vaccines. I mean I get my kids vaccinated, but that’s one of the husbands jobs, I leave the room when the needle comes out. I’ve lived my life in fear of shots, literally. I have a severe phobia, but that never ever made me stop for one second and think I won’t vaccinate my kids. Let me just say it, some of this parenting weirdness is getting crazy. Attachment parenting and the likes- by which I mean chewing your food and then feeding your kid like a bird would, breastfeeding until your kid is in elementary school, freeze drying your placenta and then taking it in tablet form (I’m still wondering how you get it home- in one of those mini-igloo coolers?? or do placenta takers only do home birth?), then there co-sleeping forever and also the I don’t vaccinate parents. Those parents make me more upset than the others. Why oh why do you want to expose your kid to a preventable life threatening illness? Do they realize what people in developing countries would give to be able to have a choice to vaccinate as opposed to losing a child from something preventable? You constantly hear about measles outbreaks caused by a group of parents who feel they know more than physicians and more than the CDC. My grandmother was born before the polio vaccine. She was playing outside in a creek with her brothers and sisters one day in the summer and the next morning she couldn’t move her legs. She caught polio. She would spend the next two years in a hospital in the city, 50 miles from home, back when people didn’t have reliable transportation. She was maybe 8 years old. She had surgeries on her achilles tendon, she was in an iron lung. She developed claustophia, her parents never came to see her (but that was a whole other issue). For the rest of her life, she limped, her muscles were weak or not there in her legs, she had super skinny legs, the skinniest I’ve ever seen. She had bent up toes and when she got older she dragged her feet because she didn’t have the muscles to lift them. Eventually she got a walker and then eventually she stopped leaving the house, because she felt too weak. She was always in pain. Polio doesn’t go away, you can be paralyzed forever, you can die, or you can get post-polio as an adult. Which is what she had. She was always in pain, her muscles were always weak and aching, she had breathing problems. All this because there was not a vaccine when she was 8 years old. Do I think she would have taken the shot over a life of suffering? Yes. Did she think it was awful when people starting to stop vaccinating their kids for illnesses and diseases she lost people to in her lifetime of course.  She finally went home a year ago, yesterday and it gave me such comfort to know she would not have pain in her legs anymore, something I never saw in my life with her. As for me, I will always be pro-vaccine, because we are lucky to be alive in a time where we can save our children from scary dreaded diseases, that many many people have lost relatives to for hundreds of years. I can’t imagine the grief of losing a child or having a child become ill from something that can be prevented.


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