Baby J had her first vaccination today. Since Lyd’s birth, I have become increasingly wary of the current method of vaccination endorsed by the AAP. I don’t believe that all vaccines are bad, but neither do I like the idea of giving 21 doses of vaccines to my child in the first year of her life (as recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics & CDC 2007 Recommended Vaccine Schedule). So, I’ve held off on giving her any vaccines until today. She got the DTaP today, and so far, so good. She ran a little fever this afternoon and evening, and I gave her Tylenol, but her leg doesn’t seem to be bothering her, and it’s not red at the injection site, so I’m happy. I’ll keep an eye on her behavior over the next few days, making sure nothing changes, but I’m hopeful that she’ll tolerate this vax well. Baby J’s pediatrician isn’t thrilled about me not having J vaccinated, but she did accept and read the copy of Dr. Sears’ The Vaccine Book that I gave her, which I think is the most non-inflammatory and balanced book on vaccines that I’ve found. (And I’ve read a lot of books on vaccines!) Now I have to decide what vaccinations to do next and when. Less is more, I’m thinking.
Another big first in our lives was that last night, JJ received his first Call. (For those of you unfamiliar with the term, a Call is essentially a job offer given to a pastor by a different church than the one he’s currently serving.) His call is to a large church in southwestern Michigan, close to the Indiana border. JJ will now take about 3 weeks to decide where he can best use his gifts as pastor. I’m not going to talk much about the specifics of the Call or of his deliberations here on my blog per his request. If you want to read his thoughts, check out his blog. But it did shake us up quite a bit! We weren’t expecting a Call at all. Thanks to the Call news, I didn’t have any anxiety attacks last night, which was kind of odd, considering the gravity of the Call and the huge change it would make in our lives. But I was grateful to have a calmer evening, anxiety-wise.
Tonight, however, my anxiety (dare I say panic?) came back at the usual Emily Witching Hour of suppertime. I did manage to eat, but did not manage to not cry at the dinner table. After supper, I called my former college roommate who struggles with similar problems, and we had a long talk. I’m coming closer to the realization that I have to be as kind to myself as I am to other people; or specifically, while I am kind to other people who use medication for the anxiety and depression, I am not kind to myself for entertaining those thoughts, and I need to get over that and be just as kind to myself when I consider using medication for my anxiety. This is a major breakthrough for me, and a very difficult one, going against all my deeply held beliefs about alternative medicine and the over-medication of our modern society. But I also realize that I have to be able to be “me” and be able to take care of my family. If I truly do have a chemical balance (one that was masked for the past 18 months by pregnancy and lactation), then it’s no different than if I had diabetes or some other chronic condition. I should just be thankful that I live when I do and not at some other time, where I would have had to resort to drinking alcohol or smoking opium to get through the day. I need to be focused on what’s best for me and my family, and not be driven by conforming to a certain medical technique. Or, as my dear husband put it,” Be driven by a solution, not by a paradigm.”
However, my husband is also very determined that we should explore all the wonderful alternative medical techniques that the Bay Area has to offer in finding that solution. (I do so love that man. 🙂 ) I have my (free!) homeopathic consultation next week. I could schedule acupuncture visits again. And we could explore the area of biofeedback; that worked wonderfully well for others we know. So, we have some other options to consider before trying drugs. And, there’s still the thought in my mind that this is hormonal, and that once my hormones settle down, this will go away. This may or may not be true, but in reality, it’s only been about a week that I’ve been struggling with this anxiety recurrence. It seems like much longer, especially when you’re in the midst of an episode of your heart pounding and your mind racing! But thankfully, God has seen me through these attacks, and I logically know he’ll see me through future attacks as well. And, the positive side of this anxiety is that it makes me a lot more empathetic and non-judgemental towards people struggling with mental and emotional health issues. I wish I didn’t have to learn that lesson quite like this, but experience is the best teacher, right?