Wednesday, March 23, 2016


Poor sick baby. Luckily the rash isn't painful.
But the sores in her mouth and throat are. :(

So this isn't an interesting post but I would just like to note that in the past week, we had

1) Hand foot and mouth disease -- Amelie. Fever rising to 104.3, accompanied by an ugly rash. Starting a few days before her first birthday. Squelching our plans to meet my siblings and their families at the Mystic Aquarium for a short celebration with a lot driving. She's much, much better but still not eating normally.

2) An unnamed viral illness -- Calliope. Starting a day after Amelie's illness, but including exact same high fever of 104.3, minus the rash. Rapid strep test and throat culture are both negative. Feeling much better now but has a painful sore in her mouth, too -- could be the same virus -- so can't eat anything acidic.

3) Strep throat -- me. Very surprising to me. My fever got up over 101, so high-ish for an adult. Not crazy high, but i rarely get fevers. The rapid test was negative but the throat culture was pending. And even if it's negative well, it wasn't exactly a good swab, Because, yeah, I kind of have a phobia of them. We tried. First the medical assistant and me. I sent Calliope into the hall for that humiliating experience (the baby was with the nanny) Then the doctor and me. She just blocked Calliope's view with her back. It ended with me shaking over a bucket. Not pretty.

Finally I went into the bathroom and gagged over and over again while staring at my reflection until FINALLY, barely, I touched the two swabs (together) against a milky spot on my tonsils.

So yeah. a negative throat culture might not be conclusive. But last night my fever kept going up and my throat kept hurting more and I realized I just didn't have time, as the single-mother-to-two-working-full-time person that I am, to wait for either the throat culture or the "watchful waiting" urgent care recommended... and so I started the antibiotics they had prescribed, just in case. And also swigged down the Magic Mouthwash they so thoughtfully provided.

I'm in a strange situation at work where I got "not a warning but a reminder" of the sick policy that, even if you have plenty of sick time, you can't have to many separate incidences of sick time in a certain amount of time, without getting a warning. It's all very vague. Because this is the year that I had 1) "asthmatic bronchitis" (my breathing sounded kind of like "Dark" Vader, as Calliope says, only louder and more rumbly), 2) sinusitis -- two weeks of nonstop coughing and finally just collapsing in exhaustion and 3) gastroenteritis, aka a stomach bug, but bad enough that I went to urgent care, scared that something was wrong. And now 4) strep throat.

And on top of that, Calliope's scarlet fever and Amelie's hand foot and mouth... each of which required me taking a day off, because you can't -- or at least, I can't -- ask my nanny to stay with a child who has a 104 fever. My baby needs me, and I need to be with her.

And meanwhile, work is just so busy. I thought on Monday that I was just tired from Amelie crying during the night -- poor baby, HFM brings lots of sores on the tonsils in addition to the adorable rash -- and it was annoying me that I couldn't focus better on my charting until finally I noticed that I was shivering. And that the sore throat I had been ignoring for days was getting worse.

So about the time I was prone on the couch, freezing cold and back aching from fever, I started panicking about all the things I wasn't, am not, getting done. Which is a super productive train of thought.

So today's "sick" day earned me exactly one hour in bed. Then I went to a previously scheduled CPR class that I didn't want to miss. Then I came home and spent 90 minutes on the phone trying to work out a tax form snafu because goodness knows when I will get any time alone with no kids, can't waste that. Then I picked up Calliope from the neighbor (they gave her a ride) and Amelie from the nanny share, put them to bed, cleaned up my desk and opened mail and made Calliope's lunch and cleared the hall table. What a restful day!

Thank goodness my fever broke and I'm having more energy by the hour. Back to work I go tomorrow, like it or not, to face an overwhelming backlog of patients. Luckily we have Friday off for Good Friday. I agreed to babysit my friend's kid since she's been taking Calliope to school for me while I and the baby were sick.

Small spotted hand. 

Looking dazed and sickly at the doctor's office.
Her shirt is wet because it was too painful to swallow her saliva.


  1. OH NO!! I hope you feel better soon! I can't believe the 'reminder' from work. Especially when you work in health... They seriously expect you to come to work when you are sick?! Nothing like the health professional getting everyone else sick!

  2. Oh no! This winter has been a real piece of work!!! Hope you all recover soon :(

  3. I hope today has brought you rest, energy, and some hope that you're all turning the corner. Good luck!

  4. Ugh what a nightmare. I think the work "reminder" is a load of crap, too. You can't control when you and your kids get sick, and if you've got sick time on the books you've got sick time. Do they have some sort of policy that you can only use sick time at a rate of 1 day a month or something. Bullshit. When you have young kids you use sick time. It's a fact of life. Well, I hope you are all on the mend by now and thank goodness spring is here. It has been a rough winter.