I’m waiting for the hammer to drop. I don’t know why it hasn’t yet and I’m beginning to wonder if it ever will and if that’s the case – where the hammer won’t drop – than my body rocks.
In-as-much as it’s immunity to Strep throat. For that matter, Noel’s little body is even more awesome because she’s been sporting the runny nose – perhaps a little Springtime cold? So her immune system has been weakened, yet still fights off this super bacterial infection that is, according to one doctor and affirmed by my husband, “a total body experience.”
The onset is sudden after the first symptoms arise. Your throat starts to hurt, you may have a headache. In less than 24 hours you will have a fever. And it’s all downhill from there. You can’t swallow your own saliva without doubling over in pain. Ibuprofen won’t touch your fever or headache. Jason’s first symptoms started at work last Monday night and on Tuesday, he had a full blown infection. His throat and part of his face became so swollen that the doctor on Wednesday didn’t even do a culture, not wanting to inflict more pain on him by jamming a swab stick down his inflamed pipe. He has been on antibiotics since Wednesday and though he’s improving, he is still in bad shape. Jason said he’s never been more sick. Strep is not just a sore throat. I didn’t know – I never had it. Because my body is awesome. Before Monday, the closest I’ve gotten to this bacteria was looking at it under a microscope in Microbiology. It was ugly back then and hasn’t gotten any prettier, 13 years later.
I was driving Ethan home from lacrosse practice last Thursday (2 nights ago) when he told me his throat was starting to hurt. I crossed my fingers, hoping that he was just being dramatic. The next morning he confirmed that his throat still hurt and he had a headache. I felt his forehead, no fever. No fever? You’re going to school bud. I told him that if his throat or headache gets worse, or if he gets really cold, he needs to go to the nurse. I sent my kids on their way.
I was looking forward to a day to myself, going to work for an hour, then to the Sam’s Club for PT and TP and coffee (the essentials), and then to the place I dreamed of the night before; a local vintage furniture shop which sells chalk paint. I was close to completing my first chalk paint project and I was so tickled with the results thus far. I decided to save the best for last and started my morning by heading into work, passing the little shop on my way, assuring it that I would come back in a couple of hours.
I was about ready to leave work when I checked my phone for messages. I had missed one, but they left a voice mail. The number was familiar – I’ve become well acquainted with the school nurse these past few years. I drove back to my little town, passing the shop on my way – tempted to stop in before I picked my contaminate up. What difference would a few minute make? I just wanted some soft wax dang it! But I resisted this urge, reminding myself that though I’m not in the running for mother-of-the-year this year, I don’t need to join the ranks of the bioterrorists.
They had Ethan quarantined off in a plastic bubble with the CDC inspectors poking and prodding him with plastic arm-length gloves through holes in the bubble. They were wearing hazmat suits . After a lengthy inquisition by the top FBI infectious disease agent, I was able to roll Ethan out to take him to the doctor’s. Okay, it wasn’t like that. I found Ethan laying on a bed in a quiet dark curtained corner of the nurse’s room. He was running a fever. I took him to the doctor’s who confirmed, through a positive rapid culture test, that it was Strep. Thursday evening he started with a benign sore throat, the next morning he developed the fever. It’s quick.
Noel and I are standing strong. I figure if it hasn’t gotten us yet, it’s not going to (though now that I just wrote that, the hammer will drop the moment I hit the “publish” button to this post).
A few years back the kids gave me a mug that says “Mom, You’re the Best!” I prefer not to drink from that mug – it makes me feel like a fraud. Until today. I finally realize what I’m the best at. I fight Strep.
Last night I asked Noel where she would rate me as a mother, on a scale of 1-10, 10 being the best. She’s honest to a fault.