Flu Season Scares Me

fluseason

If you haven’t already…take a moment to read the “Morgan P.” page. This post will make so much more sense, if you do.

FLU SEASON…DAMN IT! For parents of little ones – be warned that folks are sick and don’t even know it. I’m sure, you’ve been seeing it on the news.  The sad thing is that it’s killing people. I mean something that seems kind of slight to us…is actually killing people and it’s being called an epidemic. This is literally the scariest time of year for me since I’ve had Morgan. Winter hits and I mean, I’m one of those Mom’s who refuses to take her out sometimes because well…It’s too cold and because of the Flu (I also just hate people who cough in the winter…and I can’t turn a corner without someone coughing). Her father is WORSE THAN ME.  Luckily, I’ve never had the Flu (as I scramble to knock on wood). I’ve tried my hardest to ensure I don’t stay around people who are sick in the winter and definitely at work…I basically hide in my office to ensure I’m not around folks and all their germs. AND…I’M NOT AT ALL SORRY.  I take chances in warmer weather myself, if I’m not feeling great going in but in winter – it just isn’t happening.  Morgan’s health is too important to me.

This year seems worse than other years and of course I’m following the CDC’s website like a crazy person. Watching for statistics on whose getting sick and numbers on the age ranges of those affected. So…I’ll keep you posted.  Recently, We made the mistake of visiting a friends and her kid was sick and damn if – Morgan wasn’t sick the next day. Luckily, no Flu but still.  Her being sick makes all our nerves bad.  Sadly, we weren’t warned that her kid was sick and after Morgan showed symptoms – we immediately flew into “Panic” mode. PANIC MODE – For all non-preemie moms is Albuterol and treatments,medications, watered down Orange Juice, Eucalyptus baths,VICKS and the whole nine yards. I’m sure if you have kids, you can understand the panic and do similar things. I mean, who likes for their kid(s) to be sick.  Took about a week but she was fine and I’m happy she’s over it.  But since then…I haven’t allowed anyone around.

I say all that to say that for preemies, especially those with CLD, it’s serious out here.   With Morgan having Chronic Lung Disease…we can’t and do not take chances. When Morgan was in the last few weeks of the NICU, she started receiving a medication called “Synagis“.  It was a life saver! I mean this medication is for babies that are at high risk for RSV (Respiratory Syncytial Virus) and being a preemie or a baby that has serious health issues…this medication SAVES LIVES!!!! We got it for almost 3 years and I mean it’s just been everything but sadly Morgan has aged out and insurance no longer is willing to cover it for kids after a certain age and weight requirement has been met. “UGH” but she did get her Influenza shot already and that makes me about 2% more comfortable.  It’s hard to believe that insurance can control something that is so important to someone’s life but…it’s a money thing and I get it.  I remember talking to other preemie moms on group chats about it and some preemie moms mentioned that their kids never got it.  This was either due to being born after 32 weeks or because they were born and already met the weight requirement that put them out of risk for RSV.  To be clear – RSV isn’t controlled by weight but obviously – more meat on the bones and more time cooking in Mom’s stomach means better health sometimes. Anyway, some did just fine without it and others like me felt that it was a life saver. But secretly (NOT SO SECRET ANYMORE) I’m happy Morgan got it. But for now – we will ensure she has the Flu shot every year.

So to end my rant…

It’s register for school season/daycare for some parents for Fall 2018 and whose kids are just reaching the age requirements to enroll. With this comes all types of things that have to be done before the school districts will allow kids in.  So to tie this random piece of information in…I was talking to a friend the other day, who was pretty upset about parents who refuse to vaccinate their kids and those who don’t take their kids getting sick seriously. Her kids are already in school but she mentioned that during a PTA meeting someone made a comment about the flu season and vaccines and kids spreading sicknesses.  She, like me heard how bad this season was and was worried already.  But, the point the person made at the PTA meeting – was that someone hadn’t taken all the right precautions and sent their kid to school sick and now a few other kids were sick. Not with the flu (well she didn’t say it was flu). So she was upset because now one of her kids is sick and she wanted to know who was just so darn selfish and uncaring to let their sick kid infect others at school and who told someone that they lied and didn’t vaccinate. Long story short…

I’ve heard this before and remember it being a big issue a couple of years ago, that even the news picked up the stories.  People not caring about vaccines. Parents not caring about other people’s kids and their health backgrounds. People giving excuses about lifestyle choices. So I shared my opinion about it (agree or don’t) which is that though there is the risk of making your kid temporarily sick possibly, it may save their life later. So vaccinate.  Sending your kid to school sick – is just bad parenting. It’s hateful because you never know if a kid like Morgan (who has CLD or other issues) is around and are extremely susceptible to illness. Be fair. Be human and just because they aren’t your kid, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t care about their wellbeing.  Again, it’s anyone’s choice but what’s the harm?  I saw something about how some people consider it to be un-natural and how it doesn’t suit their lifestyle but everyone else shouldn’t suffer because of your lifestyle choices. VACCINATE! PROTECT! KEEP EVERYONE SAFE! (that was my advice – well and also speak to the parent to see if she can track down the “bad” unvaccine giving parent).

Side Note:I often chuckle to myself while I’m shopping at Target about the fact that I’m keeping companies like Lysol and Purell in business. Everything is getting sprayed down, the car seat, the railings in the house, the high chair, the door handles in every room, the stove (overkill), the dining room table, the carts at the stores, the bathrooms, the CAR, the toys – I mean everything.  I truly believe things when they say they are killing germs and it gives me hope that by spraying things like a crazy person – I’m saving her from an illness.  Some of thse products even say – Protecting again “Influenza” – that’s all I need to see…and I throw 2 in the cart.

Wash your hands and get some Lysol & Purell – oh and VACCINATE,

L’Erin & Morgan

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