I was in a bit of a dark period in my life when the twins came along. I'm not sure if you've ever experienced a period of sleepless nights for approximately 6 months, but I ended up in the deep dark depths of hell somewhere between the months of January and February 2005. And here's how it all started. I watched the TODAY show on NBC. For sure, NBC is to blame. Katie was still bubbling her bubbler every morning and she was doing a week long 'segment' on autism. I watched, for some god-forsaken reason, every morning that cold week in January. I don't remember watching daytime t.v. when I was locked in confinement for those early winter months of 2005, but for some reason I watched Katie Couric spout her vomiting vomit about how your totally functioning baby could instantly turn into a head banging monster who never can tell you how much he loves you or how much he appreciates all that you do for him, which is all I ever wanted (at that point) from my babies. "Please", I would pray to them, "wake up some day, I don't care how old you are, and tell me 'thank you for feeding me every two hours in the dark of night for the first six months of my life and I realize that this was very important to both my health and happiness and I realize, too, that it was taxing on your body and brain, but look at me now- I'm a successful and responsible functioning adult who loves someone and has brought other responsible functioning people into this crazy world'. All because of you and the sacrifices you've made." And you get my drift.
And Katie would have the stories about the babies who had their MMR vaccines and the next day they got a fever and all the days after that they were in a fog and never come back. They never returned from Neverland. And my fear, it took on a life of its own. And I realize, after hours of therapy, that this fear bore itself from some greater monster than Katie Couric and the media. But at the time the darkness enveloped me. And I couldn't see the light. No one could show it to me. Not for a very long time.
And so now- tomorrow even- when my big 5 year old boys who are headed to their most amazing pediatrician to get their last MMR shot, and Polio shot, and DTa/DTP/Td/Tdap shot in order not to be "excluded from school" I carry with me in my oh-so-out-of-date fanny pack all my fear of this autism shit...still. 4 (FOUR) years later.
And so, too, comes home in the homework folder the 2009 H1N1 Influenza VACCINE sheet with this disclaimer:
"Some inactivated 2009 H1N1 vaccine contains a persevative called thimerosal to keep it free of germs. Some people have suggested that thimerosal might be related to autism. In 2004 a group of experts at the Institute of Medicine reviewed many studies looking into this theory, and found no association between thimerosal and autism. Additional studies since then reached the same conclusion."
And I can't help but think of the 'some people' in this statement. Because they brought their functioning, normal children in to their amazing pediatricians for a 'normal' vaccine and left with a feverish nightmare of a child who will never say, "I love you Mommy" for the rest of their functioning lives. I carry this with me.
I carry the fear of my boys, tomorrow, getting filled with DTa/DTP/Td/Tdap, and Polio, and Measles, Mumps, and Rubella, and then two weeks later they get filled with dead Swine Flu and the perservative thimerosal and probably some candy just to make it all go down a little easier.
Why do I fill them up with this shit?
I've seen Katie Couric. I've seen the news stories of this pig flu reeking havoc on the young kids who can't seem to fight off the infection. Doctors are baffled. They're confused. Why are the children dying? I want my children to live. For obvious reasons. They are me. If they die. I die. But it seems so contradictory to fill them with all these chemicals just to keep them alive. When all I really want to fill them with is love and laughter.
I guess that's why Paul Bunyan takes them for the shots. And I wait at home to see if they arrive back here normal. With chocolate candy still on their lips.