Wednesday, October 14, 2009


I'm sick, and it's not the flu. Well it is, in a sense. I'm sick of hearing about the flu.

Before I had kids, I got a flu shot when they were available. If they were out, I didn't worry. I'm young. I'm healthy.

Once I had children, the recommendation changed. It was more important to get the shot, and I've conscientiously done that every year.

Except this year. The world is in a panic. That milder, less of a threat flu that no one was prepared for last year, has turned into the germ equivalent of Armageddon. There's nary a flu shot to be had in Kansas, which leaves my toddler one shot shy of the two recommended doses for children under two.

Fine. We're careful, we keep our kids home when they're sick, and the other kids at the preschool stay home when they're sick too. We're washing our hands more often, but it doesn't produce panic in my heart the way it does for some.

To answer a few questions that have been posed to me from those experiencing heart palpitations over this, consider this your open-ended response:

• No, I'm not going to hole up in your house if there's an outbreak. I think my house is just as safe as yours.

• No, I haven't called the pediatrician today to see if they have the swine flu yet. I'll get it when it's available, and I'll know they have it because IT WILL SAY SO ON THEIR WEB SITE.

• Yes, I've heard some people are getting sick this year and they don't know what it is. I can tell you conclusively almost every time my kids have been sick I haven't been sure exactly what they had, because the symptoms are so generic: fever, vomiting, coughing, etc. Most of the time it doesn't need a physician's intervention so I don't worry about it.

Bottom line: If you're freaking out, I'm not joining your hysteria hour. I'd rather have a glass of wine. But really, knock yourself out.

OK, grumpiness over. Feel free to resume your normal programming, and sorry for the rant.


  1. Yes, this has gotten a bit out of control. The H1N1 virus hit our school a couple of weeks ago -- and that vaccine doesn't even come out until some time in November! But when I talked to a pediatrician (his wife is my daughter's soccer coach), he did feel there is definitely case for concern. So just remain cautious, especially since over 50% of the cases of this flu are children under the age of 18. Hopefully it'll be mild.

  2. Yeah, I will admit a tick of concern when one of his classmates got the flu last week. It's definitely time to be careful and more aware. And you can bet I'll be carrying more hand sanitizer as we travel this next week. What I don't understand is the people who get so upset about what might happen when they've done everything they can. It seems like they're expending a lot of energy worrying.

    My current school of thought: Yay for awareness, boo for paranoia. Ha! :-)

  3. I completely agree. There's enough else to worry about!