Thursday, November 13, 2008


I have been resisting getting a flu shot for the last, um, ten years. And it's not that I'm afraid of needles - I'm really not. (But I don't love them, either, right?) It's just that I DON'T GET SICK.

I have never taken a sick day of work, and although I frequently get the sniffles or a sore throat, it's almost always just enough to irritate, and not enough to make me hit the bed out of misery. I tried this theory out on the dental hygenist the other day, when she asked about my flossing, which is pretty much - well, entirely - non-existent. And I've only had two cavities in my life, those being in elementary school. So maybe my immune system is also connected to good oral hygiene, despite the lack of good practices? (I do brush twice a day, and I've been complemented on my teeth by dentists, so stuff THAT in your toothpaste tube!)

There was one day in college that I skipped an afternoon of classes because I felt rotten, and then one day when I was working at Dayton's (now Macy's) I felt kind of yucky, went to work anyway, threw up in the middle of my shift, and then worked the next four hours. My co-workers thought I should go home, but after that, I felt just fine!

My point is, I really don't get sick. So by getting a flu shot, I feel like I'm doubting my made-of-steel immune system. And now, because of my doubting, it will punish me by letting some bug make me miserable.

Or, now that I got the flu shot, I'll actually get the flu. And I won't know if it's a reaction from the vaccine (which I really don't believe in, by the way) or if it's just my body rewarding my doubt. This, ironically, I DO believe in, although it is totally scientifically unsound. When has science ever proven anything?


Noel said...

Let's see...

* I've mixed up Woodfire and Spitfire grills.
* I've made an arithmetic error
* I've mixed up aj and jj
* I've started taking my favorite antihistimine/decongestent combo and will not be operating heavy machinery or making clever blog posts tonight. An early bedtime is in the plan for the evening.

I had my flu shot two weeks ago.

Aaron said...

Liz, sick days aren't to take a break, they are to keep you from infecting everybody else at work.

That said, I haven't taken one either (or gotten a flu shot), but I haven't had the flu since I can remember.

Also, Kate and I both recommend flossing.

Noel said...

Here's a thesis topic for someone: "Changes in American Infectious Disease Mores in the 21st Century"

* Coughing into one's elbow instead of one's hand
* Waving instead of shaking hands
* Staying home from work out of consideration for others vs making a valiant showing of how grotesquely sick one can be and still drag oneself into the office

Lyz said...

I've never gone to work when I should be at home, either! Unless you count a cold, and then really, our work force would be about half in the winter.

And I am trying to teach the kids to sneeze into their elbows. But they'll have to pick up flossing on their own. Maybe a fun holiday activity with Auntie & Uncle?

Noel said...

Or is the immunity of adults in your household due to being raised on a farm / "estate" where you were exposed to all sorts of microbes?

Crystal said...

I recommend flossing's a new thing I've taken up lately and I kinda like it.