Leveled. And back up again.

04/29/2012 at 4:03 pm | Posted in Motherhood | 8 Comments
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So. I learned something new this weekend.

Adults *can* get hand, foot and mouth virus.

And it is horrible.

Take first-trimester nausea and multiply it by at least 10, then add flu-like body aches, dizziness, headache, fever, chills and a throat so raw it feels like it’s lined with razor blades. And voila! HFM, grown-up style.

I know I shouldn’t have been surprised to pick it up, but I was. After all, I’d remained healthy all winter while Sophie and Lily brought home illness after illness. We’ve seen most everything. Ear infections, RSV, norovirus. I figured I’d acquired some sort of mighty mom immunity.

Not so much.

The good news is that it the worst of it was over in about 24 hours. The better news is that my parents live around the corner and lovingly took us in on Friday. Marc had left at the crack of dawn for a fishing trip that had been in the books for months. My throat was a little scratchy and I felt warm, but I didn’t see any reason to keep him home. Within an hour of him leaving, I could barely stand up. It was all I could do to change Sophie’s diaper, feed the girls breakfast and stagger to the DVD player to turn on Dumbo.

Enter Mom and Dad. We had already planned to gather that day because my Nana was visiting. I wasn’t sure I’d be able to drive the half-mile to their house. But I got us there. Lily scrambled upstairs to play, my Mom took Sophie and I passed out on the guest bed.

After a couple of hours of sleep and a bit of applesauce I felt better and was able to catch up with Nana while the girls played and napped.

Sophie had made a complete recovery after four staggering days of illness, but Lily started to become uncharacteristically lethargic between her typically charged spurts of activity at Nonna and Papa’s house. She also didn’t eat much that day.

And as the afternoon wore on, my symptoms flared back up. I couldn’t stand without briefly blacking out and I thought I would vomit at any given moment. My body ached like I’d been running a treadmill for hours.

At the end of the day I kept telling myself, just get the girls fed and into bed and you’re home free. You can do this.

And I did.

By the grace of God. I really believe this. Because there is no other explanation for the fact that my symptoms eased up just in time for Lily’s first cry of the night. I sprang from bed to get her, and I didn’t fall over.

I gave her some medicine and cold water and tucked her feverish little body in beside mine. And we slept off and on until Sophie woke us the next morning.

Mom and Dad took Sophie on Saturday, and I doted on Lily all day while we recovered together.

Here is one of the brighter moments of the weekend:

I’m happy (and RELIEVED) to report that everyone seems to be feeling better today. Lily’s fever is gone, and she’s regained her appetite. Sophie is up to her old tricks. And my only complaints are exhaustion and a sore throat.

So we went on a breakfast date, played at the park and took naps.

It’s experiences like these that remind me I really am a mother. And that — maybe — I might just be cut out for this job.



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  1. Great writing. It made me follow you every step until you and Lilly got better;)

  2. I should have warned you… When Jackson got HFM, Chad also got it & I think it whipped him out more than Jackson! I’m sorry you guys had to deal with that while alone over the weekend! Our weekend was very similar…Esmé is on day 5 of having fevers of 103 on & off. Today is the first day she left bed in over 4 days & I can’t remember the last time she actually ate! Fortunately she is drinking a lot of fluids! I had a really nasty cold all week, but I’m feeling better. Esmé & I also napped together for close to 3 hrs yesterday…a nap is sometimes the best medicine! Tomorrow it’s back to the doctor’s office! I’m just ready to have my old Esmé back!

    I hope you gals are done with sickness & can look forward to a happy healthy summer!

    Talk soon,

    • Hey Catherine,

      I just wanted to share that Olive had a fever for 5-6 days last week and was finally back to her old self (minus a stuffy nose) for the first time today since last Tuesday. It’s a weird little bug with very basic (but draining!) symptoms…she had fever, swollen glands, no appetite (but thirsty), and had trouble sleeping. Her friend had the exact same symptoms for the exact same amount of time. Hopefully, Esme will kick it soon if it’s the same bug. Hang in there!!

  3. We were exposed to hand foot and mouth a couple of weeks ago. Ryann and I never really showed symptoms, but my husband got it bad. Poor thing, he was just miserable. I definitely feel for you!

  4. Oh man! So sorry you had that type of weekend. Hopefully the worst is over and everyone is on the mend. My heart goes out to you. Having bouts of sickness like that makes you thankful for good health in general. 🙂

  5. So relieved the worst is over for you guys! Enough with all this sickness man…warmer weather is supposed to bring healthy days our way. Hopefully that’ll be it for a loooong while!

  6. […] little basket helped get me through the weekend. A gift from my Nana for the girls. Isn’t it just […]

  7. you poor poor things. i can relate if that makes you feel any better. our boys are so sick right now… Solo’s sick most of his life. 😦 Boo! It totally sucks!
    hugs to you four…

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