Monday, July 30, 2007

No man (or baby) is an island

Oliver had his 2 month check up last Thursday. What this meant was that he was given 4 vaccines, 2 in each thigh. I was totally unprepared for this, and totally unprepared to see my little man in pain. There he was, lying on the exam table cooing and smiling at me, holding my fingers when the first shot was given. His face went red, his mouth contorted, I could see how much it hurt him. He cried, and I cried. We came home to cuddle; he was sore and uncomfortable all day. I felt horrible. I read over the materials I was handed about the vaccines he was given and felt torn. The risks associated with the vaccines are really scary. In some cases, the rate of occurrence of the side affects is higher than the disease itself. I know that vaccines are important for public health, for the safety of the masses; but had I been given the information before hand, and known how painful it was going to be for Oliver, and for me to see him in pain, I would have opted to move us to a remote desert island, where Ollie wouldn’t need to come into contact with other disease ridden humans, or anything awful, painful, or sad really. Mr. Cuerda convinced me that this idea was not plausible or good for Ollie really. But it still seems like quite a nice idea to me. I would love for nothing more than for Oliver to grow up in world where he would never have to experience pain, never see sadness or cruelty, never see inhumane acts. Right now, his world is so lovely, and it will be for a couple of years. Everyone loves him, everywhere we go; babies seem to bring out the wonderful side of human nature. People love to coo at him and smile, talk about him. Perfect strangers are nice to us, help us, and want to talk to us everywhere we go with him. This never happens to adults, people are never that nice to each other. Right now, his world is pure and new, he sees the trees and the grass, hears the birds and the rain; the world is an amazing place for him. At some point that is all going to change, and I worry about how the way the world really is will affect him. I wish there was some way for me to protect him from all of the awful things the world can present us, and keep his world so loving and pure. Ignorance really is bliss, and I can’t think of a better place to live in ignorance than your own remote island. Since I can’t pack up my family and go live on our own little island, I guess I better buck up and prepare myself for the next round of vaccines in 2 months and for how the realities of the world will affect him, and try my best to shelter him for as long as possible.


Sunday said...

Related in several ways, my broken collarbone (which coincided with the birth of Little Man) brings out similar reactions from strangers. Older women stop me in stores and ask with concerned faces what happened. Men open doors, take things out of my arms, and ask me with concerned faces what happened. It makes me happy that people have such compassion that it breaks through the social more and they have to just ask, and make sympathetic noises and make me feel cared for.

Stef said...

It is so sad that we have to be injured or infants for humanity to be nice to one another. I am glad that society took care of you, though sad you broke your collar bone, and were unable to hold Oliver when you first got to meet him! I'll save some poop for next time.