CU Nursing - Commencement December 2021 - 7

GR ADUAT I ON
7
Childhood Shaped
His Perspective
DESPITE BEING RAISED IN A VACCINE-HESITANT
HOUSEHOLD, CHRISTOPHER BATTELLI HAS BEEN
ABLE TO CONVINCE HIS MOTHER TO GET THE
COVID-19 VACCINE By Dana Brandorff
hether it's learning to drive, graduating
high school, or moving out, there's a lot of
freedom that comes with young adulthood.
For Christopher Battelli, the transition from
child to young adult meant the ability to make his own
medical decisions.
W
" For my entire childhood, I was unvaccinated and part of
the 'exempt' crowd. " Against his mother's wishes, he chose to
get vaccinated when he was 18. " I did a lot of soul searching
and research and decided the science was too overwhelming
not to get vaccinated. My mother was not happy. "
VACCINE HESITANCY BORN FROM PERSONAL
EXPERIENCE
Battelli says his parents, especially his mother, have always
been skeptical of vaccines and distrustful of the healthcare
system. " I can't fault them as their distrust was rooted in
personal experience and a fear that any health issue could
destroy their life savings. "
Lack of insurance, fear of the cost of healthcare, and not
being listened to by providers when they did have appointments,
compounded the negative impression they had of
the system. " I grew up in a very generous household. My
mother believes strongly in helping others and taking care
of them and that it's the right thing to do. She is fiercely
independent and did not trust healthcare or vaccinations. "
When Battelli's sister was young, she was diagnosed with
Lyme disease. " Early on my mother even suggested Lyme
disease to the providers, which was ignored. " But after
months of misdiagnoses, tests, and bills, the diagnosis
came back. Recalling the incident, Battelli says, " Being
disregarded and not heard is extremely frustrating and
causes feelings of being marginalized. "
Another encounter that shaped his family's perceptions
was when his father died during Battelli's senior year at
Colorado State University. " I absolutely think our system
failed him. It was baffling to see the number of times he
went in and out of the hospital with untreated mental health
issues. " According to Battelli, the nursing staff made it less
painful. " I can remember the nurses' names. I don't recall
a single doctor. " That was the seminal event that changed
his outlook and pushed him into a nursing career through the
University of Colorado College of Nursing Accelerated Bachelor
of Science in Nursing pathway (UCAN).
ANTHROPOLOGY DEGREE HELPED LOOK AT SITUATIONS
DIFFERENTLY
After graduating from CSU with a degree in Anthropology, he
worked in public health consulting for a few years. " My undergraduate
degree helped me look through a different lens. I
use it every day, " says Battelli. His childhood, life experiences,
and education have shaped how he views people, patients, and
situations. It helps him understand that we may have different
values and don't always have to agree. " Arguing with people
who disagree with you, belittling them, and not understanding
where they come from is not effective, " says Battelli. He suggests
listening and trying to understand how they have come to their
viewpoints. " Things aren't always black and white. But there's
been this polarization when it comes to COVID and vaccinations. "
For Battelli, the difference of opinion has become a lesson in
acceptance and a roadmap for how he might handle similar situations
in the future. He and his sister were even able to convince
their mother into getting the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19
vaccine by appealing to her travel bug. " She was resistant, but
her strong desire to travel outweighed her reticence to get the
vaccine, " says Battelli. Sometimes knowing your patient, empathizing
with them, and providing them with data are the best
ways to handle differences of opinions. Intending to grow his
skills and technical expertise, Battelli has his eyes on working at
a progressive care unit of a hospital post-graduation.

CU Nursing - Commencement December 2021

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of CU Nursing - Commencement December 2021

CU Nursing - Commencement December 2021 - Cover1
CU Nursing - Commencement December 2021 - 2
CU Nursing - Commencement December 2021 - 3
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CU Nursing - Commencement December 2021 - 5
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CU Nursing - Commencement December 2021 - 7
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CU Nursing - Commencement December 2021 - 20
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