So we had the stomach flu this week…

I’ve really debated writing this up. I am sure my opinion on vaccines or our experience is not new. I’ve also debated writing it since we later figured out some stuff that happened was unrelated to the vaccines. After all was said and done though, even though everything we experienced was in the “normal” range, I wound up filing a report with the site that the CDC and FDA use to monitor the safety of vaccines. So, for the same reasons that I did that, I decided to go ahead and write this out here as well.

Last week the boys had a catch up shots appointment with the nurse at our new health plan.

It’s kind of been my mode of operation (MO from here on out) to just get 1-2 shots per visit. I do this for a variety of reasons, but the main one is aluminum exposure levels. Yes, that’s right, aluminum, not the media-sexy mercury you’ve all heard about. I learned about aluminum after I read The Vaccine Book by Dr. Sears. You can read all about that here for free where he has put that excerpt up on his site. While many of the people I know read that book and became anti-vaccine, that was not the case for me. I was mostly just concerned with the aluminum and overwhelming my kids’ immune systems with too many shots at once.

Anyway, we are really, really behind on shots because of this policy of mine and because the kids were sick starting last summer and continuing pretty much all last year until we moved back to Bakersfield in April (which is slightly strange considering the asthma and allergies and poor air quality this area is known for). My other MO (and our beloved and dearly missed pediatricians’ policy) was no shots when sick.

So our new health plan is very much all about meeting their standards and preventative care and governmental protocols and benchmarks, etc. and I’m not completely sure how it works, but I know that health plans get rewarded somehow when they can show that their members are up to date on certain benchmarks, like vaccines. And all three times that I have walked into the offices of our new health plan, the nurses and staff and doctors get all twitchy and wide-eyed when they pull up my kids’ records on the computer. “Do you REALIZE how far BEHIND your kids are on their vaccinations?” they gasp and lecture. Which irks me to no end, treating us as if we are walking bio-terrorists or something.

So before I really realize what is happening at this shots appointment that is taking place in a hallway-ish holding area while I am trying to comfort scared-of-pokes-kids and keep them from touching everything and without being able to discuss it with someone that actually can talk to me about about it (the nurse had to go get another nurse to make sure she was giving the right ones because “shots aren’t [her] thing”), I’ve negotiated down to two shots only, but one of those happens to be the 5-in-1 Pediarix.

Now, if you go to that handy little link I provided you above you will see that just from that shot alone, both my boys got 850 micrograms of aluminum in their system. Their other shot was Pneumococcus which was another 125 micrograms of aluminum for a grand total of 975 micrograms of aluminum. If you read that link you will also see that the “FDA requires, that all injectable solutions have the 25 mcg limit,” vaccines excepting (no one knows why vaccines are exempt). That’s right, folks, my boys got 39 times the FDA’s safe limit injected into their system in one sitting.

Once I realized this, I started researching some natural methods of detoxing aluminum out of their little systems. We had a spa day of sorts around here.


Immediately after the vaccine, Sprout became this sopping wet emotional puddle and it’s been almost two weeks since the shot and he’s still acting that way. Everything that doesn’t go his way is a major meltdown, tantrum, flood of tears and incomprehensible whining nearly hyperventilating gibberish. Just today I tried to give him a new kind of juice and he got so upset that he was having a hard time breathing and his lips turned bluish purple. Breathe, little boy, breathe.

He also immediately got welts and a red, hot rash at the injection site. A few hours later there was a big knot under the skin that he also still has.


And then there was the throwing up and the diarrhea. Sprout got it first. All day Thursday and into the evening. He was much better Friday and Saturday, but things came back with a vengeance Saturday night. So I stayed home with the boys Sunday morning.


When Sparrow started throwing up Sunday night I kind of still thought maybe it was the vaccine. But part of me also knew that there was a good chance that was not the case. I was up all night with Sparrow throwing up every few minutes at times, but an occasional longer stretch would allow us to doze off on the couch together. It was so heartbreaking.



Just as we were finishing up our billionth load of laundry from the boys, Bean wakes up late Monday night and starts. Stephen was up with her all night since I had my turn the night before.

Side note: The last few weeks she’s seemed so especially big and grown up to me, but during all this she seemed SO LITTLE.


After Bean got it, I knew it was just a matter of time and that Stephen and I were going down. And I was right.

Last one standing.

We only just started to feel normal yesterday, though Sparrow did throw up a couple times again yesterday afternoon. Today we are recovered and I no longer have that feeling of wondering whether I am partaking in reality.

Cheers! Breakfast of stomach flu surviving champions.

Even though it turns out the stomach issues were unrelated to the vaccine (though Sparrow’s vaccine weakened immune system could have made him more susceptible to picking it up, I suppose), many other things were not. I will definitely be more prepared and we are spreading those shots out more for sure!


Filed under Family, Kiddos, Parenting, Politics, Ramblings

2 responses to “So we had the stomach flu this week…

  1. I haven’t altered the vax routine too much, with the exception of the flu shots. I refuse to get them for Keegan since he’s been diagnosed with Asthma. Reason being is that they can’t give him FluMist because of his asthma status, and all of the injectables still contain mercury. He’s done relatively fine over time (though knowing what I know now, I likely would have spaced vax out more as well), but I just refuse the flu shots at this point. (For the record, I don’t get them either – they make me nervous because they change each year and come out so quickly with so little testing…)

    It’s too bad your visit to the doctor to PREVENT illness likely caused you all to be ill 😦 You probably picked up the bug there.

    Random, but some tips I recently discovered from a person who works in a peds office for preventing catching bugs while there are the first comment on this article.

    That site skews a bit paranoid though (like myself, I’m a true emetophobe) so take what you will 😉

    Glad you’re all on the mend!!!

  2. bandofbrothers

    ug. all these shots make me so uneasy. ollie is due for shots and it completely effects him adversely. it’s so hard on their bodies! i can sympathize.

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