I consider myself to be a pretty groovy mom – “up” on all of the hip trends and far out crazes of today’s culture. I can boogie with the best of them and have never passed up a trip to Funky Town. But the other day I ran across a tidbit in the news that had me questioning my conventional coolness:
Huh?…silly old fashioned me, I was familiar with the standard cherry, grape, orange, and even that chic new pomegranate sucker that Tootsie Pop is now marketing, but chicken pox? Nope. As it turns out, some mom in Nashville, Tennessee made headlines after investigators discovered that she was peddling the new lolly “flavor” from her house and was hawking them for a premium price.
You see, apparently there is a fairly large population of parents out there who believe the chicken pox vaccine is risky and dangerous and that actually getting sick with the disease is far less worrisome. The new trend is to connect with Facebook groups such as “Find a Pox Party in Your Area,” which offers people a way to expose their wee little ones to chicken pox (and I’m sure an assortment of other trendy germs) via contagious children or their contaminated “stuff. ”
The enterprising Nashville mom just took it one step further and decided to monetize on little Billy’s drool by having her kid (or someone else’s, who knows?) slobber all over a sucker before snatching it away from him, packing it up in a box, and sending it to say, Sally’s mom 500 miles away. Once the sucker had arrived at its destination, Sally would allegedly be able to contract the disease as she watched Smurf reruns and slurped on the sucker.
What’s more is that Nashville Mom was selling them for $50 a pop (no pun intended) before the authorities knocked on the door of her workshop, wagging their fingers at her, informing her that the virus factory she was operating out of her living room was illegal. Personally, I’m sorta thinking that customers of the microbe-laden lollipops should have considered a free alternative…a convenient trip to Walmart to lick shopping cart handles.
So call me evil because yes…I did indeed have my kids vaccinated for chicken pox. And yes, I know kids who get vaccinated run certain risks. But I also know that the worst part about getting the vaccination is most often the scary, pointy needle and being held in a half nelson by 14 nurses during the process. In reality studies have proven that generally speaking, contracting the disease can be even more hazardous than a shot.
But clearly, I must have transitioned to the older generation of moms. Back in my day we threw birthday or Halloween parties for our kids. And you weren’t allowed to go if you had the sniffles.
What are your thoughts and experiences regarding vaccinations? Have you or would you ever attend a “pox party?” Please comment! And be sure to check out my photo caption contest in reference to this topic.