Tuesday, January 15, 2013

My Thoughts on The Flu

As the flu is reaching epidemic proportions and everyone is raving about whether or not it's ethical, responsible, selfish or personal to get (or not get) a flu shot, here's my two cents worth.
Where does the flu come from every year?  Please tell me.  Yeah, yeah, I can "google it" and see what wikipedia.com and webmd.com "say" but someone, please tell explain it to me in a way that makes sense.  Oh and where does it "go" for the half of the year that we're not infected by it?  Twenty years ago when we had so much less medical technology (heck, ten years even) and  yet I don't remember the flu being a pandemic concern.  How is it that as we progress in this world we are getting worse?  How does a virus go "dormant" for months and then rear it's ugly head only to sicken thousands and kill hundreds each year?  None of this makes sense to me.
This is the same planet I have been living on for 33 years now and while medical discoveries continue to improve our health and longevity "every day" why in the world have we not eliminated this stupid virus?  Yeah, yeah, "it morphs and mutates every day and so there's nothing that can "stop it" from spreading and infecting people" - heard that too, but then what are we vaccinating against?  I just read today that the vaccine this year is averaging a possible 60% success rate because there are some that are still getting a "strain" not protected against by this vaccine.

Vaccines, don't even start me there.  There is no other medicinal treatment in this world that is a "one-size-fits-all" dosage, yet vaccines are?  Again, something that has NEVER made any sense to me.  I don't completely disagree with the need for a vaccine.  My problem is when the vaccine costs a hundred bucks and then you have a 50/50 chance that it might work.  Seriously, of all the things I consume - food, gas, insurance, water, cleaners, shampoo - if there is a 50% chance it could help and a 50% chance that it wouldn't, why spend my money on it?  Why did vaccines against polio, measles, rubella and mumps work but we can't make one work for the flu?
This is what frustrates me.  I have grandparents that are of compromised health.  I have a neighbor girl that lives with SMA and is at risk of getting even just a minor cold.  If our health care system and big pharma really cared about these people, the vaccines should be of minimal to no cost if they are not completely dependable.  If our medical community is making such great strides in health care then why is this "a pandemic" and such a problem when it used to not even be on the radar of our lives.
I truly believe that a huge part of this is not about getting "stuck" with a vaccine and hoping it works so much as actually taking care of yourself, your family and your neighbors.  If you are remotely unwell, your child or your spouse, STAY HOME!!!  Hand sanitizer in your bag, bleach wipes at the entrance of every store so you can wipe down your cart, Lysol wipes in every room of your house, seriously people, are these things helping us?  No, think about it, if it was, this "epidemic" would not be so nearly out of control.  Keeping your rear at home when you're sick, keeping the kids home from school (yes, you'll have to miss work) until they are 24 hours plus healthy and just generally maintaining yourself and your home are steps that are just as important as any shot you could get.  Yes, I'm "that mom" that has her child miss an extra day of school "just to be sure" rather than take the chance that he's going to expose someone else.  Also, if my child is sick with a fever I will let them sweat it out.  Why give her Tylenol so that she will feel good enough to run around and play yet she's not resting so her body can fight what's wrong, in turn taking her longer to get better because she's just wearing herself out more.
I just don't get it.  I hate this flu stuff.  I really feel it's as much political as anything.  Divide and conquer, instill fear in people and make them choose sides.  The political race, the flu vaccine debate, the rest of anything else you and your neighbor disagree on, it is what it is.  God will take care of us.  He knows what's going on around here while we walk around in this maze of mirrors every day.  We are in a society that thrives on "to each his own" leaving each other to do for themselves and worrying only about what he is going to "get" next.
We need to get back to a world of hard working, integrity solid and faithful people that do unto others first and then reap our own rewards later.  Having pride in things accomplished and earning the things you work for rather than waiting on someone to "hand it to you".  Where we first think of others and share that which we have been blessed with when reaping in the bounty from the Lord.  Help your neighbor, so that when they fall ill, they might stay in and rest rather than worry about their list of things that needs done.  Rather than being so wholly dependent upon medicine and doctors to cure what ails us, take rest in the Lord that He will provide all you need and care for you in even your weakest moment, without question, without pause.  Yes, your doctor, big pharma and the ER nurse are there when you need them but not without a cost to you.  What are you willing to pay by trusting in them?  Do they deserve your trust?  We need these health professionals in our lives, most certainly do occasionally, but at times we forget that not everyone has our best interests in mind.

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