So, you want to know what do about H1N1? Well, you have come to the right place. Because let me tell you - I am a wealth of information! I have read everything that has been published about this nasty flu over the last few weeks. In fact, I feel confident that I could hold my very own press conference, and give some solid answers to people.
I have read everything from the World Health Organization, from the Public Health Agency of Canada, from Health Canada, from CDC, and all sorts of articles from local and national media. Of course, I have watched the nightly news, I read the Globe and Mail daily, I have talked to my pediatrician's office several times, I have called in to our local news talk radio show and have spoken with a very educated doctor. I battled with my decision to get my children vaccinated, and decided it was in their best interest to get the shots over with. However, despite my knowledge about this flu, I, like most of you, still have lingering questions.
So, here you go...
The vaccine is safe. It is. I have had the shot, and I'm still standing. My children have had the shot. We got the shot with the adjuvant. However, if you're pregnant, you should wait to get the non-adjuvant shot. Oh, wait - now they're saying you can safely get the adjuvant shot, too. It's up to you. But Canada has ordered the non-adjuvant shot, just in case. Well, no, there has been no clinical study with pregnant woman, ever, but we still say it's safe. But it's up to you. But you should get the shot. When you're more than 20 weeks. Or if you're just pregnant. Or think you're pregnant. Or not.
Oh, and if you already have children? Then get the shot, damn it! And like, right now! And I mean ALL children between the ages of 6 months and 5 years old, because they are most at risk. Oh, wait - it should really be all school-aged children, so all school-aged children go get the vaccine. What? Your older children are not allowed to get the shot once they arrive at the clinic? Ooops. I mean, they could just wait until next week, of course. But then... we'll be out of the vaccine. So go back in line. No, actually, wait. No, go. No, don't go. Just young kids. Not the older kids. Actually, yeah, sure, all school-aged children, get in line.
Oh, and you? You healthy 33 year old? You got the shot? Oops, our bad, we weren't really asking the right questions, it seems. Ah, well. At least you're vaccinated. Oh, shoot. Now we are running out of the vaccine. But we promise more vaccines are coming.
And whatever you do, do not panic! I mean, it's JUST a pandemic. Don't get scared. Even though it's all you're hearing on the news non-stop for weeks on end. Even though hospitals are not sure how to handle the amount of patients they are seeing, even though articles are being written about every possible scenario you can imagine.
Oh, and I know you have perfected the evil eye - you give 'the look' to anyone who coughs within 100 metres of you. I mean, how infuriating is that? If someone is sick, stay home! Enough is enough. If I hear one more person cough near me, I will scream!
And everything I eat now officially tastes like Purell, but anyway. At least it is protecting me, right? I just looked in my purse. I have 2 bottles of Purell, one bottle of another hand sanitizer, and two small bottles of Bath and Body Works anti-bacterial hand sanitizer. My car is equipped with 2 giant containers of Wet Ones! I'm prepared. But I'm not suppose to worry, right?
Don't panic. It's not that bad. Oh, my goodness. It is bad. It really is... or not? What are they sayiing now?
Oh, and you were told your child needs 2 shots of the vaccine, given 21 days apart for maximum protection? And now the WHO is sayinig that actually one shot is enough? But wait... CDC is saying 2 shots are for sure more effective. But we don't have any idea yet. We have not figured it out. Don't worry, though. We'll give you an answer. Someday. Soon. Yes, your children need 2 sho - oh, wait - no they don't. Oh, yeah, that's right, the USA uses the non-adjuvant vaccine. Which means... yeah, we still don't really know what we are talking about. Nor do we have any idea how many people have received the vaccine.
Okay... does anybody have a headache? I am not kidding, I found a white hair in my head this week. I am THAT stressed out. And I apologize, as I just realized I don't actually have the answers. Huh.
Disclaimer: I take this flu very seriously, as anyone who follows me on Twitter or knows me in real life can attest. I really am paralyzed with fear, and I have been vaccinated against H1N1, along with my husband and children. I am very glad we got the shot, and I hope you have all made the best decision for your family, too, whether you've gotten vaccinated or not. I am also thankful I live in this country, and able to get a free vaccine that could potentially save my life. I do appreciate what we have and what we've been given. I hope and pray this flu goes away quickly, and I also pray that everyone who gets this flu gets it mildly.