Repost: The Monkey is stronger than me

Yesterday was Monkey’s 6 month birthday, and today he’s getting stabbed with a bunch of needles at the pediatrician’s office. Not because we enjoy torturing him, but because it’s good for his immune system. This repost is in celebration of all those parents who make the responsible decision to vaccinate their children.

Need more convincing? Read this post from Greg Laden about why he vaccinates his child.
Today was the Monkey’s two month pediatrician appointment, during which we he had to endure three needles to the legs. This was the Monkey’s first big round of vaccinations, and I hated watching him go through it. Thank God for the Zoloft, because this might have been the hardest thing I’ve gone through as a Mom! The Monkey was a tough little guy, though. A little bit of crying, but nothing that a bottle couldn’t soothe, and he was calm as could be by the time I dropped him and Hubby off at home and headed to work.

I’ve dreaded this appointment for the past week. It didn’t help that every time I was in the pediatrician’s office I could hear agonizing screams from little ones in the neighboring rooms. It was all enough to make me understand why parents who don’t really understand the whole vaccination “debate” might choose to not get their kids immunized. Of course Hubby and I know better, and the Monkey is safer for it. But it really did show me how irrational you can become as a parent. The sound of your little one crying wailing can rip the heart strings straight out of your chest, and you’d do just about anything to make it stop.

This protective instinct is why we, as vaccine advocates, have our work cut out for us. Few parents have been swayed by reports that there is no link between vaccination and autism. We have to work that much harder to educate the public about why kids should be vaccinated. The science bloggers can and should do their part too. Why not spend a post or two talking about your experiences – as parents, clinicians, researchers, whatever. As hard as it was to watch the Monkey get stuck by those three little needles this morning, I’d hate to think what it would be like to watch him coughing uncontrollably from Pertussis, or hospitalized with pneumonia due to Streptococcus or Hemophilus. After all, those three little shots were much harder on Hubby and me than they were on our little Monkey.

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