A disclaimer before you read any further. I am not a medical professional. The experiences documented below may not match your families. Thank you. Now, if I could take a few minutes of your time to talk about the flu. Wait! Don't leave! This is a happy story! At least so far...

My 9-year-old daughter Carly was diagnosed with Influenza A on Tuesday night. She was done with school for the rest of the week, and we were bracing for the worst. She already had a bad cough and was running a low-grade fever. I'd seen all the reports on the news about the horrible flu season we were in the middle of. But I'm happy to report to you on Friday, that her conditions have only improved. And no one else in our home has come down with the illness yet. (Someone knock on wood...please.)

Everyone in our family had a flu shot this year. Yes, it didn't stop Carly from getting it. But after a call to the pediatrician's office, it more than likely lessened her symptoms. A nurse at the office said that was something they'd seen in kids. Lesser symptoms if you received the vaccine. This is my official pitch for flu shots. They've covered by most insurance plans. They're quick. And they could prevent you from experiencing the worst of the flu. Do they always work? No. Aks Courtlin.

Something else I have mixed feelings on is Tamiflu. This is the medicine prescribed when you are diagnosed with the flu. It could take up to 12 hours off of your time with the flu.  I could have also gotten it for my other two kids as a preventative measure. But at what cost? It isn't fully covered by most insurance plans, and the potential side effects are awful! Stomach pains and vomiting are common. There are also fears it may cause hallucinations and increased thoughts of suicide in some kids too. We said 'no' to Tamiflu.

Now I understand that your family might approach the flu differently. I understand that. Maybe Tamiflu works for you. Great. I'm just thankful that so far, the flu hasn't had a terrible grip on our family. Here's to continued good health for us all!

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