Confessions Of The Unvaccinated
Heck. How did we get here? Being so publicly entitled to pass fear based, angry, heated and passionate judgment upon someone else’s health decisions? I mean, women across the globe are well versed in the narrative of little to zero bodily autonomy, but that’s another story for another day!
I know a bit more about bodily autonomy issues in health care, since I’ve been in and out of hospital for the past 23 years. I’m still quite scared to say so publicly that I won’t be getting vaccinated with the one who should not be named. The fall out of so publicly speaking my mind, is frightening.
Let me preface this post by saying, I do not welcome hate comments in any way, shape or form regardless of your stance. For your decisions, regardless of what they are I applaud you for standing up for what you believe in, I wish for you that those decisions have the very best impact on your health that you expected it to.
I always thought that “no thank you, I don’t want to” or “no, I’m afraid” was a whole, complete and sufficient answer to any offer – particularly when it comes to health care. Doctors, Nurses, Surgeons and all the other fantastic humans involved in keeping us alive, are obliged to fully inform a patients about the good, bad and ugly side of their care. Regardless of the patients decision, even if it is detrimental to their health, no means no.
I had my first surgery at the age of 10, it was a big one. It involved removing a portion of my spine and completely severing the nerve that controlled my left arm in a 9 hour surgery. A medical mishap during this surgery landed me right back on the operating table, with a recovery that involved being strapped to a bed for 2 weeks, and wearing a frame on my head 24/7 for 3 months. The rest of my life since has seen me having mishap after mishap, unexplainable side effects to surgeries and medications, just get on with it, it’s for the best! “TRUST ME”, they say.
Just before I turned 29, I took seriously ill, more than I’d ever been before. I had severe headaches, weakness and vomiting. After 9 months, contacting my GP, Surgeons and A&E departments to be told “it’s just your condition”, I started to go blind. A paramedic saved my life when he stood in the A&E corridor and begged the nurse to give me a brain scan – I had a huge brain tumour. This is not uncommon in someone with NF2, having it ignored and untreated for so long on the other hand….mistakes in medicine happen, sadly for me, it wasn’t the last time.
6 months in to my recovery, more tumours threatened my health. On that day, I gave up my life, in order to save my life. I cry as I type this, I’m surrounded my the most AMAZING people, who give me reasons to wake up and live through the pain and suffering. Them people have been on that journey with me, and you should know how lucky I am – they eat, sleep and breathe finding hopeful new ways to cure me, researching endlessly for vitamins, drugs, therapies and treatments to keep me going. There is nothing I won’t try in order to save myself. Everything I do, I research it endlessly over and over again because my life, despite everything, is worth living. So yes, I’ve done my research.
My life is already being lived on a very precarious balance, a ticking time bomb that could go off at any time. There’s been 4 near misses so far, and that’s just in the last 3 years. That, in itself is reason enough to forgo any medical treatment should I wish to. My research contributes to my decision too, so why people feel entitled to tell me how to manage my health is beyond me. My health is mine, and mine alone. Because I don’t want to, is a complete answer.