My kids have swine flu. Yep, that scary-ass bug that the media has us all convinced is the next plague has invaded my Purell-soaked world. Both kids are flat-out on the couch in their jammies watching "The Barbie Diaries" and drinking grape juice as I write this. And you know what? We're all still alive.
Don't get me wrong; it's been a little hairy around here. When the fevers were climbing and no amount of Tylenol could bring them down, when the hacking coughs started, when I realized that they had EVERY SINGLE symptom on the handy-dandy checklist that my health insurance company had sent me, I panicked. A little. And prayed a LOT. Then I called my pediatrician, a mom herself, and put them in her capable hands. Armed with Tamiflu prescriptions and a little mommy-education, I felt much better about our ability to deal with the devil virus. And then I read the notes on the bottle of blood-red (cherry-flavored?) Tamiflu: "often causes nausea, vomiting and diarrhea." Great. Because a little vomiting of bright red medicine is EXACTLY what my couch needs right now. Each child got her own beach bucket (I know what they're getting for Easter next year because those suckers are going straight into the garbage if anyone pukes), and I put a drop cloth on my new family room rug.
So, yeah, the kids are watching a LOT of TV (while I watch them) and drinking a LOT more juice than normal (while I'm sucking down the coffee like it's water just to keep from passing out next to them on the couch), but so far, so good. I haven't slept in days, but I think we've got this thing beat. Meds are staying down, I'm staying up, and we've even started on the make-up work. (Hey, you can take the mom out of the classroom...) My kids may be sick, but my house is the cleanest it's ever been: I have a bucket of bleach and I'm not afraid to use it. And Lysol disinfects everything, right?
But I didn't follow the CDC's protocol: I took my kids to the doctor when their fevers were only at 102. I didn't wait for 104. I didn't wait for extreme lethargy and blueish skin and trouble breathing. I took them when my mommy-instinct screamed, "SOMETHING'S WRONG HERE!" And I'm glad I did. Tamiflu is most effective when taken in the first 24-48 hours of onset of symptoms.
Slacker Mom Says...don't always trust the "experts". We're moms - we're the experts on our own kids. If I'd waited, who knows how sick they'd have gotten. We've escaped relatively unscathed, thank God. Whether it's a bump on the head, a child who just seems "off", or swine flu, we gotta do what we gotta do. We're moms. That's our job.