I freaked out

In the middle of getting my hair cut, I bolted my barber’s chair. There’s a flu epidemic on, and I have a 13wk old at home.

I had seen the news, how over flu season has cropped up 5 weeks early this year with 29 states reporting high to severe amounts of cases, and the vaccine shortages, and that’s when I thought, yeah, maybe I should get one of those.

It hit home when that morning my boss was home sick, a co-worker was home sick, and my wife had a meeting canceled because the person she was meeting was sick, along with her whole family, and then, finally, as the barber’s assistant was asking me if I wanted a hot towel before getting into the barber’s chair, I overhead the receptionist on the phone saying how my haircutter was heading home early because she was feeling sick.

That’s it! It’s coming for me!

I got right up and said I’m sorry, I have a newborn, I can’t mess around, and left. I ride my bike to work, not the subway, and usually am several feet away from my co-workers, so I hadn’t been super-worried - which is not really rational thinking, I know - but when I heard the fifth person that day was sick and that person’s face was going to be right next to mine for 20 minutes, my vanity couldn’t justify the risk of passing the flu on to my son. Every year the flu kills thousands, and the elderly and children under 6 months are especially vulnerable. Even if I just got sick and then he got sick, I couldn’t live with it, our household being on time-management tenterhooks as it is, no matter how great my hair looked.

I ran away from the barber’s on my bike and got the flu shot at work. Should have gotten it two weeks ago, because that’s how long it takes to be fully effective. Please don’t get sick, little man, and if you do, forgive me.