I hope no one is offended by this post.
Someone in our house has been sick since the Wednesday after Christmas. Eliza's cold became Virginia's cold, and a few days into it, the death cough returned. (my name for it, not a medical one, obviously) Pediatrician thought she had pneumonia, administered a shot of rocephin, but chest x-ray was clear. Thank goodness. But a few rough days of coughing, breathing treatments, and big dog antibiotics. (again, my word, not theirs)
We were on the mend last weekend and then Eliza and Virginia caught the stomach bug. (I'm guessing from the doctors' office because we literally have not been anywhere else.)
So Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday we stuck pretty close to home and consumed lots of pedialyte. It seemed like things were improving Thursday, so I showered and dressed for a meeting at school. (Big mistake)
My mom gave me these awesome boots as an early birthday gift,
I love them. They are my favorite shoes ever. The only problem is that since they are real boots, they are a little hard to get off. (Maybe that's why they have boot straps or I just have fat ankles.) You should have seen mom and Ginny pulling them off me the first time I wore them. It has only gotten slightly easier with time.
So, Thursday I am dressed in my new boots and a new Christmas cashmere sweater as well. I took Virginia out of her wheelchair and laid her on her bed to get her dressed. She coughed once and threw up everywhere.
There is not a shower chair that works for Virginia. So every time Virginia gets a shower, I get a shower.
She was screaming (because she had throw-up all over her), and I was frantically trying to pull off my *%!* boots. It wasn't working. I was pouring sweat, and cussing every vain bone in my body for attempting to get dressed with two sick kids. But there was no way I was picking her up and getting vomit all over my cashmere sweater or cognac leather.
It seemed like forever, but I finally got them off. (Thank you, Mary). Virginia finally calmed down in the shower, but as I was carrying her back to my bed, she started violently coughing and I almost dropped her. I managed to get her top half onto my bed, but as I lifted her legs onto the bed, she coughed one last time and threw up everywhere.
Needless to say, I was late for the meeting.
Fast forward a few hours. Eliza wakes up from her nap, and is obviously in a decent amount of pain and won't walk. At first I think she has viral synovitis, where a cold virus settles in your hip joint. A pain, but not usually such a big deal. Wills has had it twice. (I know, I know, thank goodness for my Dad). Then I notice her hands and feet are swollen, and it seems like all of her joints are bothering her. I am starting to panic a little, but Dad diagnoses her with reactive arthritis (over the phone) and says kids can respond really strangely to some viruses. Give her some motrin and watch her.
Around 8 pm (just after this Muppets dance party)
she develops the worst looking rash I've ever seen. I'm thinking measles, mumps. I don't know, just bad. Getting hot and sweaty on the dance floor wasn't such a good thing for her.
I page the real doctor, who sticks with Dad's theory and says it looks scary, but Eliza will be fine.
On Friday morning, her lips and ears start to swell. I head for the doctor, who proceeds to give her two doses of steroids, but still assures me everything will be fine.
She was correct, and by bedtime Friday, the swelling was down (but not the rash). However, giving an already high-strung two-year-old steroids for five days is a nightmare. She is an emotional wreck and doesn't sleep. (Still describing Eliza, not myself). Whoever said steroids don't keep kids awake hasn't met my girls.
By the way, Eliza is so funny. Her favorite color is 'Ginch Green', as in 'How the Grinch Stole Christmas' green, but I don't know who told her that was a color. Is that a color?
My aunt and uncle gave her this Winnie the Pooh t-shirt for Christmas and it is all she will wear.
She stands by the dryer and waits for it.
Last night at bedtime, I asked her what she wanted me to sing. I was thinking something along the lines of 'Jesus Loves Me', but she said, "Built City on Rock."
Looking for clarification, and still thinking spiritually, I said, "On this rock I build my church?"
"No, Mommy. 'Built this City on Rock and Roll.' From Sissy's iPod."
Oh. So I sang my child to sleep with a little Jefferson Starship. "We Built This City on Rock-n-Roll." It's on the new Muppets soundtrack, just in case you were wondering. My parents actually met over a Starship album at a party in medical school, so I was actually more than happy to sing it to her.
Yesterday Wills started running 101 fever. Please let this be his unique reaction to the virus the girls have already had, and not something new. Please.
So, hoping for a few healthy weeks! I really want to wear my new boots!
P.S. Thank you for all your kind comments on my last post. It means a lot to me and makes this blog not feel like such a one-way conversation. For those of you in real pain, please know that it was a long time before any of my baggage got moved to the basement. I don't think you have a choice about how to respond to tragedy in the beginning. Everything just hurts. I also don't think I will ever permanently clean out my basement, so to speak. To do so would not be honest. Suffering is a part of this life, and has a real place. You just can't let it control you. Some days I am better at that than others.