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What ifBy  Cathy Jameson

When people ask me why I’m so adamant about speaking up about vaccines, I ask them if they want the short answer or the long answer.  Most of the time, the person doesn’t mind hearing the long answer.  It starts out the same way a lot of other parents begin their stories, “I had a beautiful, happy, healthy baby until…”


Until a well-baby visit. 

Until a round of vaccines. 

Until too many too soon. 

Until it was too late.

Well-baby visit after well-baby visit, I brought my child in for a check-up, for a round of shots, for a proverbial pat on the head.  You did the right thing, mom.  See you again soon…at the next well-baby visit!  

Sadly, those well-baby visits didn’t leave my child well.  In fact, Ronan wasn’t very well at all after them.  The more well-baby visits he went to, and the more vaccines he received, the less well he got.  He reacted.  He got sick.  Then he worsened. 

Easily I can now recognize the signs, the symptoms, and the red flags now.  But as they were happening, and even after bringing some of them to the attention of our providers?  I was blind.  I was uninformed.  I was too trusting.  I was too trusting not of my mother’s instinct, but of “the system” and of those who ran it.  

I’ve learned quite a bit since then.  I’ve also told Ronan’s story hundreds of times since then, too.  It hurts to retell Ronan’s story as many times as I have, but I still share it.  As I finish sharing Ronan’s story, I’ve either left the person I’m speaking to in complete and utter shock, or I’ve left them in a puddle of tears.  Depending on whom I’m speaking to and on how much I've shared, I cry too.  

What happened to Ronan? 

Was there something that triggered it? 

Was there something that you could’ve avoided? 

I can answer those questions, but they haunt me.  The explanations that I heard when I’d bring Ronan back to the doctor the sicker he got, and the farther onto the autism spectrum he tumbled, haunt me too.  I was told that it was “just a phase” “because he was a boy” and “don’t worry, Mom” “because he’ll catch up”.  How I had prayed Ronan would catch up. 

But he didn’t.  And he still hasn’t.

While watching my son miss milestone after milestone, I went through periods of feeling paralyzed to being overcome with intense worry.  Out of all of the emotions I have experienced, worrying is the one that I have mastered well.  That’s probably because it’s the feeling that’s stayed with me longest.  It’s stuck around because that once beautiful, happy, and health baby is still sick.  His development is still delayed.  And he’s still hurting. 

A lot of children are hurting, and I fear that more children – and adults now, too, will continue to be hurt by vaccines.  More surely will if lawmakers vote to approve the vaccine mandates that are currently being proposed in several states across the country.  If those mandates (which aim to restrict or remove parental rights and to mandate that adults be “caught up”) happen, I have a bad feeling that we’ll hear even more vaccine injury stories than vaccine success stories. 

Until vaccine injury is no more, I’ll continue to talk about vaccines.  I’ll speak up.  I’ll share the story of what happened to my child.  Being honest is better than being blinded.  So, I’ll tell people how clueless I once was.  I’ll say that I’d wished I’d known but didn’t.  I’ll recall what it was like to be uninformed and how I should have been better educated instead.  I’ll share all of that knowing that what I share is probably more than what they’ve ever been told by their own medical provider.  I’ll offer what I can in the hopes that just one piece of information is enough. 

I promise to keep talking.  To keep sharing.  To tell Ronan’s story over and over again.  To say exactly what needs to be said.  I promise to do that until there is no need to speak up about vaccines ever again. 

Cathy Jameson is a Contributing Editor for Age of Autism.



Teresa Conrick


I so identify with this even though Meg was born probably 10 years before Ronan. The tragedy keeps coming too as this type of injury is not a one time event as the illness is multi faceted. Thank you for your fearless words.


My daughter was four years old when she had the evil "well baby visit." She came out of the doctor's room and said, "that doctor hurt me." I said, "You mean the shot hurt" and she shook her head. She just repeated, he hurt me. She spiraled into chronic illness. She probably would have gotten autism but she was already four and this was 86 before the big vaccine push so she just got chronically ill and ended up with an autoimmune disease.

I will never understand how doctors can be so out of it to not realize what they are doing. It has to end soon, though. I can't imagine with all the information out there now, with the aluminum story where now aluminum is in sperm, in breasts, in the brain, causing autoimmune disease. When I put the word vaccine in a search engine the word autism pops up. It's on people's minds. If this had happened to Ronan today you would know sooner that something was wrong and connect the dots. I think we closer to the end. Fingers crossed.


Thank you Cathy.

Who would have thought a year ago that Dr. Nancy would have lost the trust of the American people and be "out of business" ??

Dr. Wakefield has yet to lose a supporter and certainly might be given the respect he deserves should Dr. Thompson of the CDC spend a few hours (or days ?) talking to Congress.

Peter Miles

As I'm sure you are aware, there's a lot more to these stories than you can put into a small post. One of the things we've become aware of is the woeful lack of knowledge even in the hospitals. When our son was born he was given the HiB shot just hours after birth (strangely, the procedure changed the next year to 2 months with a criteria of not less than 6 weeks, and now the shot is not given until 7 years except in instances of known exposure to HiB). Anyway, after the shot our son tensed up almost like he wanted to keep his arms and legs in very close to his body. None of our other children did this, they had no problem relaxing. Then he had trouble nursing, he just couldn't seem to latch on properly. The next day he started to become jaundiced and got worse so mum and he had to stay in the hospital for eight days. None of our other children were like this, and none had the HiB so early, in fact I don't think any of the others got HiB at all.

None of the nurses or doctors over that eight day period thought any of this was a problem. However, many years later I find in records that have been posted (on the internet - that huge web of conspiracy theories!) That these are classic symptoms of vaccine reactions. There was something going wrong in his tiny brain.

Later, after other shots, he experienced prolonged bouts of crying, many hours at a time for quite a few days, and he started arching his back like he wanted to be put down in his crib, but as soon as we put him down he wanted to be picked up again, only to arch his back and start the cycle again. Again, we didn't experience this with our other children, and the nurses and doctors didn't seem to be concerned.

More years and more research later it's become obvious that these too were vaccine reactions that our nurses and doctors were unaware of. At the same time the vaccine manufacturers were counting these reactions in their studies if someone did happen to take notice and classify them as severe.

The rest, as they say, is history. He did seem to be developing normally overall, he started to sit up, crawl and walk age appropriately. He started to get a small vocabulary together. He just had these bouts of crying and being unable to settle down to sleep properly. . . . and then the vocabulary started to disappear, the perseverative behaviours started up and we ended up with the autism diagnosis.

In all of this, the doctors and nurses looked on from the sidelines completely unaware of the vaccine damage that was occurring. And when the autism diagnosis was made the response was "we really don't know what causes this".

There needs to be a BIG list made up and given to every parent (and doctor and nurse) at every shot that says "These are vaccine reactions - call us immediately if any of these symptoms occurs". Not just the little list that says a little soreness at the injection site a little bit of a fever, etc. and the proviso that severe vaccine reactions are very rare. That doesn't help anyone.

After all, our babies and toddlers can't really describe in words the true effects they are feeling and we have to judge what they feel by what we see and hear.

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