Death

I had the… fortune(?) to wander through a vaccine conversation yesterday. Lots of strong feelings. People tend to only believe that which supports their previous beliefs.

Life is really scary. I hate to break it to you folks: everyone is going to die. Whether you die from getting the vaccine or not getting the vaccine or cancer or a car accident or falling off a cliff. You aren’t getting out alive.

Sometimes I feel a little weird about the wide spread hatred of non-vaccinators. Ok, fine you think they screw up your herd immunity. Why don’t you just think of them as the low hanging fruit that can die first? Why bother getting mad at them? Why are you so angry that someone else wants to risk their kid?

Because you don’t really believe you are protected enough until everyone conforms. Well… hate to break it to you buddy, that’ll never happen.

My kids are not fully vaccinated. I’ve had people tell me we aren’t welcome in their home. I’m comfortable with that.

Life involves all kinds of risks. The fact that I haven’t fully vaccinated my kids on a schedule decided upon to hit the maximum number of poor people with little access to health care… I can live with that risk.

Even though I’m playing Russian roulette with the very reasons I’m alive. Live involves a lot of risks.

For me buying a big enough bottle of Ibuprofen is a risk. I want to die pretty badly. For me having a razor blade in the house is a risk.

Getting in my car is by far the most dangerous thing I do. I’m planning to drive 13,000 miles this year with my children. Where are the people lining up to rail at me for being a terrible mother and risking their lives more than absolutely necessary to shuttle them back and forth from the state run prison I mean school.

My kids are vaccinated for the diseases that would kill them or cause permanent brain damage. I sincerely doubt I will start getting the flu vaccine before I’m 60 and I don’t have any idea if my children will ever get it. If you don’t want me in the house… I can live with that. Yes, the flu kills lots of people. When my children were young enough to be at risk I didn’t take them out of the house much. The flu kills specific classes of people. It is not equally dangerous for everyone. I’m comfortable with the amount of risk I’m taking. I live very near wonderful hospitals where they can yell at me all they want as they save my life.

Modern medicine is a funny thing. I only want as much of it as I want.

Ok, we also haven’t vaccinated for chicken pox yet but Shanna says she is probably going to ask for it the next time we go in. I’m comfortable with that.

I made the decisions that could not fucking wait. I wanted to let them make the rest of the decisions. I think they have the right to decide for their own bodies. Just like I get to decide for my body. Most likely, the girls and I will get our hepatitis vaccines at the same time. We want to go to third world countries and it will be relevant. At that time it would be just flat stupid to ignore the hepatitis vaccines. (Given the amount of risky bdsm and sex I’ve done it is just flat stupid that I never got the hepatitis vaccines. I had multiple partners who were hep +.)

Life is about risks. It is such a near thing that I’m alive. I’m not going to be paranoid. I just can’t. Well… that’s not true. I’m paranoid about the things I can’t avoid being paranoid about. The stupid things that don’t matter, like: oh my god is someone mad at me. I don’t get paranoid about things like death.

What the hell is there to get paranoid about? It’s going to happen. Like, duh. It will even happen to my bright shining children. I hope I die first but I’m told I have to make it to old age. So we’re in a race to die of old age. That means I won’t have to see them die. I’m paranoid about Noah dying–which is kind of funny. Why just him?

I depend on Noah in a way I’ve never depended on anyone else. It’s not just that I’m a dependent. I’ve been a dependent most of my life. It is bigger than that. Noah sees me and is willing to engage with me on any old uncomfortable topic just about any minute of the day. He doesn’t need me to be convenient. He takes me as I am.

My kids need me to behave. They are getting stronger and stronger at defining what that means for them. I am so proud when my kids tell me that my tone of voice is too harsh or when they argue with my assertions.

But even though I worry about Noah’s death and I know it will hurt me a lot… I’m just going to take steps as if it is true. Noah will die. I don’t see trying to deny that it is coming. I need to be prepared. It could happen tomorrow or it could happen in 30 years. Either way has to be ok.

I don’t really have a choice.

6 thoughts on “Death

  1. Krish

    How do you feel about boys (or their parents) who steadfastly refuse the HPV vaccine? They are ok living with their risk of cervical cancer (zero).

    1. Krissy Gibbs Post author

      Last I heard, it wasn’t actually recommended for men/boys. Last I heard you have to use it off-label to use it that way.

      The HPV vaccine is very mixed. It is most effective for white women and not very effective against the strains that target WoC. I’m ok with people deciding to skip it.

    2. Krissy Gibbs Post author

      But to actually answer your question: how do I feel about boys who refuse the HPV vaccine? Well, I hope my girls are smart enough to not fuck them.

  2. Krish

    I couldn’t find any numbers on the efficacy of the current vaccines in WoC. WoC had half the HPV 16 and 18 (the subtypes targeted by the current vaccines) frequency as whites did. How that translates into efficacy is a good question that I’m sure people are looking into. None the less, it’s possible that HPV vaccines could save the lives of more WoC than white women because WoC die from cervical cancer at a much higher rate than white women.

    1. Krissy Gibbs Post author

      I am not interested in convincing anyone so I’m not going to do a bunch of research. My understanding is that the strains in the vaccine are not very helpful for WoC. My understanding could be wrong.

      I have not done research on this topic since … 2008? 2009? Things change. 🙂

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