Today’s adventure was getting shot in the arm. My wife took the kids and I to our family doctor and got our annual flu shot. My twelve year old daughter asked the nurse “why do we get it in our arm?” The nurse told her she could get it in the thigh or buttocks. I said to my daughter that I’ve had a needle in the bum before. Quick as a whip she said, “you’ve also had a finger in the bum.” Thanks for reminding me about my physical last year.
Back to the flu vaccine- I don’t exactly have the best immune system as it is. I had an upper lobe of my lung removed at age two. I suffered from numerous ear infections as a child and chest colds growing up. Asthma and allergies have manifested throughout my adult life into something rather troublesome. So a flu shot helps.
In 2008 I didn’t get a flu shot. That fall, I was so sick, I ended up in the hospital and off work for three weeks. Suffice to say it wasn’t just a case of “The Man Flu”. I had never felt so horrible in my entire life. I even lost a lot of weight- I don’t exactly have much extra weight to give away as it is.
After I tell people about getting the flu shot, I hear things like:
“Why would you do that? It doesn’t even work.”
“Flu shots are a waste of time. I’d rather let my own immune system do the work.”
These are the same types of people who come to work sick and spread viruses everywhere, but will gladly take a “sick day” to extend a weekend. They are at every office or job. You know who they are.
The flu shot makes sense to me. My family gets theirs as well. Same reason we keep up with vaccines- it’s that whole “herd immunity” thing. Sure, a shot in the arm hurts a bit- but in less than five minutes we showed up, sat down, got called in and were each given the flu vaccine. Nice and easy compared to the feeling of death steamrolling over me for days on end. That isn’t on my to-do list this winter.
So go out and get your flu shot. Or don’t. It’s your choice. Just remember that at 2am in the middle of winter, you will be wishing that a store was open and you could buy some over the counter medicines to combat the virus. Why not just do an ounce of prevention ahead of time?