Monday, November 19, 2012

An Unwanted Souvenir

The last few times we have gone to Disney World I find myself feeling like a germaphobe by the end of the first or second day of the trip.  Usually this feeling is unfounded.  Everyone comes home and is well and my fretting about picking up whatever germs are on the rides and the railings in the queues was all for nothing.

I was a bit wary heading down to Disney World last week.  The day before we left for our trip I was beginning to feel sick again.  Oddly enough, two days after the antibiotics I was taking had been finished I began to feel exactly the same way I had two weeks before.  Somehow I made it through the trip without feeling too awful.

By the time we left to head home early on Friday morning I was feeling like we managed to get out of Disney World with nothing more than a case of sniffles for Katie.  But I was wrong, she picked up something far worse than the sniffles.  This morning she woke up with what I thought was one of the worst diaper rashes I had ever seen on one of our children [and Ellie used to get some dreadful ones].  She had these huge blisters, that I assumed must have been from the hot dog she had the night before.  As the day progressed and airing her out, balmex and lanolin all did nothing, I started to worry that maybe she had chicken pox or possibly fifth's disease since the red marks were spreading all over her legs and arms.

Katie and Ellie had flu shots scheduled for this evening so I figured if she had something bad they wouln't give her the shot.  The nurse giving the shots didn't seem too concerned about the rash and Katie got the flu shot and she suggested that we go to waiting room and ask if one of the doctors could see her.  They told us that there was no way she could be seen tonight, but I was able to flag down one of the nurses that I know and she made sure Katie got looked at by one of the doctors.  A quick glance at her by the one doctor got us brought into an exam room where we were squeezed in for an appointment.  After a short wait the other doctor who usually sees Katie came in to have a look at her.  He seemed a bit fascinated by the horrible cluster of blisters on her rear.  Apparently he had never seen this illness present itself in such a way.  I still didn't know what was wrong with her until he took a look in her mouth.  As soon as I saw a little sore in the back of her throat I knew exactly what Katie had.  Just as I was about to ask if I was right the doctor announced that Katie had quite the case of hand, foot and mouth disease.  Arrgh!

If you've never had a bout of Coxsackie virus then I should tell you that it's quite painful.  I've had it a couple times when I was in college.  Only I never had the rash and sores on my body, just my throat.  The worst part of it is there's nothing they can give you to make it go away.   I suspect Katie is in for a miserable week.  And since this virus is contagious, it's possible that any of us might get it.  Since I can't help but hold Katie and take care of her I'm not sure if I have any chance of not catching this.

From what I have read about this virus, it looks like Katie is contagious as long as she has the little sores/blisters.  I'm not sure if my parents and brother are going to want us at Thanksgiving dinner at this rate.

So I guess in the end I was right to be a bit concerned about picking up germs.  I suppose Katie really didn't stand much of a chance with all of the different changing areas, high chairs and rides that she touched.

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