Saturday, January 23, 2016

F*** You, Zika Virus

Never heard of the Zika Virus? Well, neither had I, before yesterday afternoon.

(and no, I do not have the Zika Virus).

I've had a girl's trip to Mexico planned for months now- to join 6 of my dearest high school girlfriends for 3 days/nights of catching up and relaxation. I'd planned to surprise them all with my pregnancy upon arrival, and was SO looking forward to this time away. I had my suits purchased, had tried on all sundresses and found several that fit over my belly, had secured round-the-clock help with Iyla- you name it, I was READY.

Yesterday I happened to be posting on one of my Facebook Mama groups about recommendations for the upcoming Babymoon trip BC and I were hoping to plan. Someone mentioned that I should be sure not to travel to anywhere in South America/Mexico, due to an outbreak of the Zika Virus.


I quickly replied that- ahem- I was supposed to depart for Mexico NEXT WEEK, and should I be concerned? I rash of reposes to the tune of YES had me immediately stalking Google.

I learned this was a virus transmitted by mosquitos, and wasn't much of a concern UNLESS YOU WERE PREGNANT. You see, this virus- which has NO vaccine or cure- has been linked to alarmingly increased cases of Microcephaly:

Microcephaly is condition where a baby’s head is much smaller than expected. During pregnancy, a baby’s head grows because the baby’s brain grows. Microcephaly can occur because a baby’s brain has not developed properly during pregnancy or has stopped growing after birth, which results in a smaller head size. Microcephaly can be an isolated condition, meaning that it can occur with no other major birth defects, or it can occur in combination with other major birth defects.

After growing increasingly alarmed, I decided the wisest thing was to call my OB here in Austin for reassurance. Mind you, my clinic here is comprised of extremely left leaning, liberal, granola type MDs and Midwives… and I pretty much expected they'd tell me my risk was so low that I should go ahead on the trip and enjoy myself.

No such luck.

When I got the nurse on the line she told me I was the 3rd call she'd gotten in the past 24 hours, and did I need her to write me a letter to refund my travel expenses? I asked if this meant they were advising patients not to travel right now, and her response was a definite YES.

That poor nurse had to then hear me sputter out a series of curse words in between asking over and over "really? Really!?"

And so it is. I have to cancel my long awaited girl's trip to Mexico FIVE days before I am set to depart. BC is so sweet and is encouraging me to book something else for those dates- but the problem I am running into is the last minute-ness of this all with availability. Plus the money I am getting back from the Mexico getaway (thank GOD for travel insurance!) doesn't go very far. A trip to Mexico is pretty much one of the most affordable bang-for-the-buck vacations one can get, so my current replacement options are severely limited.

Gah. What are the odds that this virus had to break out NOW? I am so sad and angry that I am going to miss out with my girls. And in the same breath it is absolutely NOT something I would chance fate with- we've worked way too hard for this baby and I would never forgive myself if anything happened to it due to my ignoring my doctor's advice.

So I say: F*** YOU, Zika Virus…. F*** You!

(Sorry to the Grandparents reading this post for my vulgarities).

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