Flu shots and sickness

Namine got sick after getting a flu shot, but we were (sort of) prepared for it.

Namine knows there is a likelihood of her getting sick after a flu vaccination. It’s not medicine, after all. So while she was disheartened to wake up sick the morning after she got her flu shot, she was not too surprised — and neither were Jessica or I.

I’ll digress for a moment to talk about Namine’s work ethic. She is in so many ways a normal child. She will play in her room rather than clean it. She will argue and talk back to us. (And who knew our daughter would be so sarcastic?) But we are continually impressed with her attitude towards work, whether it be therapy or school or whatever.

When Namine got up this morning, she of course knew she wasn’t feeling well. She knew why, too, having been forewarned that flu shots can sometimes do this. But still she got up, got ready for school, and signed in for her first online class. It was only after we told her that she may take a sick day that she agreed. (But that’s the beauty of online classes; they’re all recorded so she can go back and watch them at her convenience.)

Anyway, back to the topic at hand: flu shots (and vaccinations in general).

Even though flu shots are often the cause of relatively short-term sickness, Namine and I continue to get them for two reasons. The first is simply because they are preferable to the alternative, where we get the full-blown flu and are laid up in bed (or worse) for a longer period of time.

The second reason is more important: Jessica cannot get a flu shot. The vaccination contains egg, to which she is allergic. So in order to reduce the likelihood of bringing the flu into this home, thereby infecting Jessica, Namine and I get our flu shots. (This concept is known as herd immunity.)

In the meantime, Namine is still sick. With Thanksgiving coming up and us being uncertain as to the cause of her sickness — we think it’s from the flu shot but we’re not sure — we need to self-isolate. We’ll have a smaller celebration here and we’ll celebrate virtually with family. (We celebrated last Mother’s Day over Zoom, so that’s not exactly a new thing, either.)

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