Vaccinating Our Children

To my little angel,

From the first I knew of you, I have prayed for your well-being. I pray you will be whole physically, mentally, and emotionally. I pray that you will be joyful, loving and confident. I pray that you will have a Godly heart. I pray that you will thrive.

I pray that when you fall, you will have the strength to get back up. I pray that in the midst of life’s storms, you will have the ability to hope. I pray that you will believe in good. I pray that your faith is your foundation.

I pray that you will choose your friends wisely. I pray that you will always use your words to defend yourself and others. I pray that you will be kind and generous. I pray that you will be strong and firm. I pray that you will go the extra mile.

I pray that life will excite and intrigue you. I pray that the wind will rip at your hair and that the sun will beam upon your skin. I pray that you will dive into the ocean and that you will run until you feel you are flying. I pray that a good book will challenge your point of view. I pray that you will never stop asking questions. I pray that you smile easily.

I have so much hope for you. I promise you that I will always fight to give you the safest, healthiest life that I am able. For you, my angel, my love, my light, I would do anything.

Love, Mommy

vaccination1My child is three and a half years old. She will receive her second MMR vaccine this summer. I have done my due diligence as her parent. I have done the research and talked to qualified professionals. I believe that vaccinating my child will not make her ill. I know that not vaccinating her will not only put her at risk for developing untreatable diseases, but will put other children at risk as well.

In the year 2000, measles was declared to be eliminated from the U.S. This meant our children were safe from the deafness, permanent brain damage, pain, diarrhea and death associated with this disease. In 2014, the CDC reported 644 cases of measles in 27 states, and from January 1st to January 30th of 2015, 102 people contracted this potentially deadly illness.

Parenting is never black and white, although we are often asked to define our parental identities within certain parameters. This creates unnecessary pressure and sets unrealistic expectations that we, as parents, struggle to live up to. I don’t believe that a so-called anti-vaxxer is an evil parent out to destroy my child’s life. I believe the anti-vaxxer is a struggling parent just like me, one who wants the best for their child and one who is desperate for their child to live as healthy a life as possible. But much like smoking effects the health of non-smokers, refusing to vaccinate effects the health of everyone.

 ” A study conducted in Montreal found that the birth cohort prevalence of pervasive developmental disorders, which include autism, increased from 1987-1998, whereas during the same time MMR vaccination coverage showed a statistically significant decrease.” – Dr. Frank DeStefano, Clinical Pharmacology and Therapeutics

300px-Is_your_child_vaccinated_Vaccination_prevents_smallpox1Currently, there are nineteen states that allow exemptions for the measles vaccine for personal and philosophical beliefs. Texas is one of those states. I believe that if you are philosophically inclined to expose other children to suffering and death, then you are obligated to seclude yourself, as that decision infringes upon other’s rights to a healthy life.

I signed this petition to voice my belief that nonmedical exemptions for vaccinations are detrimental to the health of our country. I hope that you will sign if you have similar beliefs. Every voice counts.

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