My princess Aurora is 7 (!!) months old. Happy, healthy, home birthed, breastfed …. and fully vaccinated.
And I’m mildly terrified.
Babies cannot receive the MMR vaccine until they are 12 months old, per the CDC recommended vaccine schedule. That means, in the midst of a growing outbreak, including every state surrounding ours (one of two ways Wisconsin is ahead of Minnesota … that and alcohol sales on Sundays), my baby is at the mercy of the herd for another 5 months.
This is the stuff my anxiety is made of.
My fear means that even though our family is fully vaccinated, I find myself circumscribing activities. No church. Baby stays home when I go to breastfeeding support groups. Can’t decide if story time is too risky. A sigh of relief when daycare confirms all the kids follow the vaccine schedule.
The science is clear that vaccines are effective – when we all participate. High levels of participation made it safe for our babies too young to be vaccinated to be out in the world. High levels of participation made it relatively safe to decline vaccines for a long time – I understand that it can seem a little silly to vaccinate against a disease considered eliminated in your community, especially if you don’t plan to travel. But our world is small and moves fast. How wonderful! I can hop on a plane and take my kids places I never dreamed I would be able to! How terrifying, how easy it is to bring a vaccine preventable disease home.
How easy to pass it to my baby.
How do I best protect her? Wash our hands. Breastfeed on demand. And now, stay home.
Honestly, I don’t expect folks to change their stance based on my little blog post. I honestly don’t expect anyone to run out and vaccinate their kids to help protect my peanut. But if you notice she’s out and about less, if you miss her smiley face, now you know why.
Please be gentle with me. I’m terrified.
For a more reasoned approach, Seattle Mama Doc covers measles outbreak with babies at home.