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Moths & Sheep; Vaccinations & Rules [Daily Link]
Friday, September 27, 2002

Tímea started out the day very tired after her ordeal yesterday. But still she started it out well. Before school she found a set of stickers of insects and wanted to know which ones bite and which ones don't. When learning that moths eat wool clothing she asked whether moths eat sheep (or at least the wool when it is on the sheep.) I doubt it, but it is a remarkable question (and we can't seem to find the answer.)

When we go to school we were reminded that Tímea needs a DTP/DTaP/DT/Td booster as well as a Hib booster. And that today was the deadline. (We hadn't paid attention to the deadline.) We were told that we should talk to the school officials about what to do when we picked her up. During the day, I called our medical provider to set up an appointment with a nurse for these injections over the weekend. But I was told that they won't give injections to someone who hasn't had a physical within the past 24 months. Tímea's last one was in August 2000. Thus we needed to make an appointment with a pediatrician, and the next available appointment would be for October 10. Panicing that Tímea would be excluded from school until the 10th, I read over the form we'd been handed by the school. I listed an interesting point.

If immunizations are against your personal beliefs, please come to school/child care to sign the exemption statement.

This prompted me to write the following letter

To whom it may concern,

We need to inform you that as part of a long and deeply held family and personal tradition, it is against our principles to have a child receive a fourth stage vaccination prior to Columbus Day Eve (October, 10) 2002. This tradition we hold in honor of the Native Americans who suffered massive epidemics after Columbus' landing in the new world.

We hold this principle only for the fourth in a series of vaccinations in sad commemoration of the Columbus' fourth vessel, Pestilence, which he brought along with the Niña, the Pinta and that Santa Maria from Europe. We maintain this principle until 2002, because the year as written in palidromatic which has special importance in our tradition. Based on these beliefs we claim an exemption from any vaccinations of our daughter, Tímea Goldberg, which would go against these beliefs.

By a fortunate coincidence the next available appointment for such vaccinations by our medical provider happens to fall on October 10, 2002. At that time Tímea will receive her latest boosters.

So that is our story and we are sticking to it, at least until we can get her immunized.

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