A Special Letter To My Toddler: Please, Stop Making The Baby Cry

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Because you’re making the baby cry.

A Special Letter To My Toddler: Please, Stop Making The Baby Cry

I know that you love your baby sister so much that you want to squeeze her, but she doesn’t like having all her insides shoved into her chest.

You’re making the baby cry.

I know that you have this weird ear fetish right now, and you think that other people like having their ears pinched together. But no one likes that.

You’re making the baby cry.

I know you were only trying to give the baby a drink of water because you thought she was thirsty. But I’m sure you know that her mouth is not on top of her head, and now she’s soaking wet.

You’re making the baby cry.

I know you were just chasing bandits on your stick horse, but you trampled the baby and smacked her in the face in the process.

You’re making the baby cry.

I know you were just trying to help her stand up because you wanted her to walk, but her legs aren’t strong enough yet, and neither are you, based on how you dropped her.

You’re making the baby cry.

I know you were just trying to give her a hug, but you knocked her down Sumo-style instead.

You’re making the baby cry.

I know you were trying to help feed the baby, but onion skins are not for eating and, as it turns out, get stuck to the roof of one’s mouth.

You’re making the baby cry.

I know you just wanted to cuddle, but when you climbed in her crib and fell on her, you scared her shitless.

You’re making the baby cry.

I know you were just copying Mommy and pretending to eat her chubby thigh. But when Mommy does it, she doesn’t use her teeth.

You’re making the baby cry.

I know you wanted to teach the baby how to catch, but now she has a black eye.

You’re making the baby cry.

I know you still don’t grasp that pinching people hurts them. But it does.

You’re making the baby cry.

I know you really wanted to play with the baby’s toy even though you have 100 of your own, but dammit, she had it first.

You’re making the baby cry.

I know you were only trying to get her dressed, but you have to undo the buttons before trying to ram her head through it.

You’re making the baby cry.

I know you were just trying to give the baby a treat, but she’s too young for chocolate. Now I’m the bad guy who took it away and there is chocolate everywhere.

You’re making the baby cry.

Please, Stop Making The Baby Cry

I know that you just wanted to play hide-and-seek and thought that the best place for her to hide would be underneath a blanket, but she hated that.

You’re making the baby cry.

I know you told her to run before you shot the arrow at her, but she can’t even crawl yet.

You’re making the baby cry.

In conclusion, my dear, sweet little angel of a toddler: I know that you love your baby sister and are confused as to why she starts crying when she hears your angelic, screaming voice coming her way, but for the love of God, leave the baby alone!

Because you’re making the baby cry.

8 Stupid Excuses For Not Getting A Flu Shot

As the summer begins to fade and the days become cooler, I brace myself for my least favorite part of the fall season: the flu shot debate. Inevitably, someone will post some alarmist article about the dangers of flu shots and, as a registered nurse, I will roll my eyes so hard that I almost suffer a brain hemorrhage.

I feel strongly about the benefits of the flu shot, and while I can absolutely respect another parent’s right to make choices for their children’s health, I cannot respect statements with no basis in fact. If you are a parent with a medical degree from the University of Google and you complain to me that flu shots are dangerous, there’s a fair chance that I will get into an argument with you.

Time and again, experts have proven that the flu shot is safe, effective, and does not cause autism or any other spectrum disorder (that’s enough, Jenny McCarthy). Nothing frosts me more as a medical professional than when I hear parents making statements about the flu shot that are either clear misnomers or so completely wrong that I’d swear Dr. Drake Remore was their family pediatrician (God, I miss Joey from Friends).

By and large, the influenza virus affects between 5 to 20% of the U.S. population, depending on the virility of the influenza virus strain in a given year. And while the Centers for Disease Control is not able to compile exact numbers of flu deaths because influenza complications can cause a myriad of other deadly conditions, it is estimated that nearly 200,000 Americans are affected by flu-related illnesses per year. Anywhere from 3,000 to 49,000 people die per year from a virus that is easily preventable with a small injection once a year.

Regardless of the exact statistics, when you don’t get a flu shot for you and your kids, you put others in danger — and I am not okay with your choice to refrain from doing so.

Whenever someone insists to me that they refuse to get a flu shot, I immediately wonder if they feel the same way about hand-washing, or cleaning up vomit in their homes, or public sanitation. All of these measures are proven ways to not only protect yourself from germs but also those around you. We worry that our waitress didn’t wash her hands in the bathroom before serving our food, so why aren’t we worried that she could be breathing flu virus all over our bruschetta appetizer? Seriously, people, the flu vaccine has been proven over and over to be effective and the vaccine is just as important during flu season as hand washing. Just get the vaccine already, please?

Also, a word about the herd, if I may. Your community, your workplace, your social circle, and all the places you interact with people is your “herd.” If most of your herd gets vaccinated for the flu — those people who are able-bodied, healthy, and cleared to receive the vaccine — there’s practically no place for the influenza virus to propagate and flourish. Community immunity protects those who can’t get the vaccine for a variety of legit medical reason because there’s no one to pass the virus on to them. Getting the flu vaccine makes you an even better neighbor than the one who always brings that irresistible buffalo chicken dip to block parties.

Other excuses that drive me batshit crazy:

1. I’ll get the flu if I get the vaccine.

The flu vaccine you receive is an inactive or weak virus. It’s physically impossible for you to get the flu from the vaccine. Really. Just stop it because you sound ridiculous.

2. I’m too busy.

Oh, but you have the time to be laid up in bed for 7 to 10 days, writhing in agony while your laundry piles up and your kids destroy your house?

3. I don’t like needles.

Put your big girl panties on and suck it up. Seriously. It’s a tiny pinch and you’ll get a lollipop. Grow up.

4. It causes autism.

Uhm, no. The only person who still believes that is Jenny McCarthy. Even the guy who said it has admitted he was wrong.

5. Drug companies are getting rich off of vaccines.

Nope. Flu vaccines are not a profitable market for flu vaccine makers. And, besides, everyone knows the real money is in jacking up the prices of life-saving EpiPens. Duh.

6. But last year’s vaccine didn’t even work, so why should I bother?

Yes, it’s true that occasionally, the flu shot does not match well to the influenza strain that is infecting patients. Because of the nature of flu vaccine production, scientists must decide nine months ahead of time which strain is likely to infect the masses, and that can be tricky. The fact is, though, they are right on the money more than they aren’t, so just shut up and the shot because it’s worth it.

7. I’m allergic to eggs.

Admittedly, this one is slightly tricky, but I’m going to go ahead and call foul play on this one. For the most part, doctors agree that inactivated viruses are safe for patients with egg allergies with close monitoring after the injection. Egg-cellent.

9 Those vaccines are full of toxins.

Uh huh. Pretty much anything you come in contact with will cause side effects in excess, but news flash: The flu vaccine is 0.5 mLs of fluid. That tiny amount is a drop in the human body ocean, I promise. The polio vaccine uses the same chemical agents, and you know what we don’t have an epidemic of in this country? Polio.

As a mother, I am outraged by parents who not only don’t see the necessity of vaccinating their children against a deadly virus but who also won’t do me the solid of helping to protect my kids from influenza.

As a nurse, I am offended by the number of people who don’t take the time to be educated on a vaccine that is safe and that could save their lives. When I proudly lift up my sleeve in my doctor’s office and take the injection like a trooper, I know that I’m doing my part to keep my community safe and that’s a good feeling.

And when they hand me a lollipop and a sticker for my bravery, that doesn’t suck, either.

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