Friday, November 27th, 2009


Filed under: aging,being a landlord,death,family,illness — alison @ 16:12

I went to the Stade Olympique yesterday for my H1N1 vaccine, my first-ever influenza shot. I’d never bothered before because it had always seemed like too much trouble and I wasn’t in a risk group. But for H1N1 they’ve made it really easy and I’d taken the day off work anyway so I could do it whenever and wherever it was convenient.

I still had to think about whether protecting myself against a deadly strain of influenza virus was really something I wanted to do. A likely outcome is that I will have a longer old age, which is not something I necessarily want. (Healthy but not particularly long would really be the ideal for me.) But another likely outcome is that I will not be a vector transmitting H1N1 to other people who might actually be gunning for that long, productive life but who might not be in a condition right now to be vaccinated: small babies, for instance, can’t be effectively immunized against influenza. My friend with cancer, who most definitely wants to live, may get only limited protection from a vaccine and is largely dependent on the people around him to not transmit it to him. The girlfriend of the woman who is dying of lung cancer in the apartment upstairs will not be able to point the finger at me as being the one who infected her with her final illness. And I will not interrupt the old ages, happily surrounded by children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren, of my old relatives.

So I got the H1N1 vaccine and will get the seasonal flu vaccine when it becomes available. If I ever decide my old age is dragging on too long there are ways around that that do not involve making other people sick.

Powered by WordPress