As a mom I always want to know more about how to protect my kids' health. Vaccines are one of the most confusing terrains for parents. Part of the goal of The Homestead Education Center is to bring forward voices that are not often heard in Mississippi. While I support judicial use of vaccines for children, I did feel the terror that every mom feels while sitting in the doctor's office reading the possible side effects listed on both sides of a warning sheet that I had to sign before submitting my kids to a needle. With my first child, I couldn't do it! I ran out of there and began researching other options. We came upon a spaced out schedule of vaccines and declined any optional ones.
But many families in Mississippi believe the choice should be theirs to vaccinate at all. This voice is often marginalized as radical or ignorant. It has been my experience that most truth lies somewhere in the middle. We cannot find that truth unless we open up our hearts and minds and humbly admit, "We just don't know."
Blindly accepting decisions made by other people for our children is probably not a good idea. Finding a conspiracy behind every bush is probably equally unhelpful. The key, I believe, is to do your own homework. Listen to a point of view you don't favor with an open mind. Listen to a variety of points of view, and be open to changing your mind, even several times, as new information arises.
I have invited Dr. Tetyana Obukhanych, the author of The Vaccine Illusion to do a virtual interview about her work in immunology. I want to find out what she is learning about our body's immune system. I want to hear what families who want the choice to vaccinate in Mississippi have to say. I may not agree with a thing I hear, but I might change my mind considerably. Unpolarized dialog is a powerful tool. We are losing it in this country.
If you would like to join this respectful dialog, please do! It is free and maybe we will all learn to listen respectfully and to ask good questions if nothing else.