Tuesday, April 24, 2007

The first day of the rest of my life

Boo Bug suddenly walked up to me yesterday afternoon, pulled up her shirt and said, “Hey mommy, I’ve got a dot on my tummy!”

Why, so she did. It looked like a little pimple. Hmm. Odd, but not crazy-odd.

Just as I was about to get up and start making dinner, Danger Mouse came into the office and said, “I’ve got dots on my tummy. And they itch.”


Sure enough, she has half a dozen largish ‘pimples’ on her tummy. And then she informed me that she also had some Down There.

By golly – she has quite a few Down There.

I ran out to the playroom, collared Boo Bug and said, “I want to check your dots.”

One dot on tummy. Three under her underwear.

Oh, crap.

Inspection revealed that Captain Adventure likewise has a few ‘pimples’ on his tummy but Eldest is free and clear.

We went immediately to their pediatrician, who said, “Ummmm…well, it could be contact dermatitis, or, it could be chickenpox.”


Apparently, the chickenpox they can still get after vaccination does not behave like the chickenpox of my youth. There may or may not be fever. There may or may not be massive quantities of dots spreading like wildfire over all their skin. There may or may not be sore throat, headache, or really any other symptom at all.

Adding to our uncertainty is the fact that these particular three Denizens take baths together, while Eldest bathes alone, thank you. It is entirely possible that these three all encountered something in the tub, maybe I didn’t rinse the cleanser thoroughly enough (great, yet another thing to feel guilty about) or perhaps they used a new soap or who knows really.


You know…when you start a new job, you get…a little ‘welcome aboard’ party. A new nameplate for your cubicle wall. A walk around being introduced to people. Hey! Sometimes you get taken out for lunch!

Me, I get itchy tummy-dots of mysterious origin, possibly contagious, possibly not.

But it isn’t really bothering me. Because! I don’t have to email anybody about it.

Hello, yes, I’m going to be encumbered with four children who may or may not have chickenpox. Yes, I’m aware this is about the eighteenth time this year. And that the average number of days per month is four. This is about weekly. Yes. I’m aware of that. I do math for a living, I understand how averages work. Thank you for pointing out the bloody frickin’ obvious. It makes it so much easier for me to deal with the fact that my kids may or may not have chickenpox and are in any case itchy and miserable to know that you’re ‘concerned’ about how often my kids are sick.

Go ahead and be sick, little ones. Get it out of your systems. I officially have nothing better to do than be with you.

Let’s make waffles for breakfast. Sure. We’ve got time.

Plenty of it.

Hallelujah, amen.


Anonymous said...

Finally de-lurking here. When my siblings and I had chickenpox (waaaay before the vaccine was available in the US), all four of us had it at the same time in August with no AC. My mom bought paintbrushes and let us paint each others' spots with calamine lotion. AND she dragged our little wading pool into the kitchen onto a tarp, and filled it with bath toys and ice cubes since we couldn't go outside because of the possibility of scarring. Actually, it didn't seem too bad when I remember it. Good luck with your bout of may-be, may-be not chickenpox!
(ps - welcome to your new job! if my kids and I were nearby, we'd take you out to lunch.)

Amy Lane said...

ah...i've got two older kids who have not had the chickenpox vaccine. I'm very afraid.

21stCenturyMom said...

The chickenpox vaccine is a money mill as far as I can tell. The number of kids who have serious problems from chickpox is minscule relative to the cost of making sure every little kid gets vaccinated. I'm all for letting them get it au natural and if you haven't by the time you are 10 or 12 get the vaccine. No one ever listens to me, though.

Amy lane - get them vaccinated! No fear.

Dysd Housewife said...

Two of mine got CP together when they were around age 7-8. MY daughter got exactly 3 spots. two on her hand, and 1 on her buttcheek. My son got *1*. A REALLY big one that itched like crazy, on the bottom of his foot. I am ALL for the vaccine, because I am sure they would have gotten it much worse had it not been for that. Other kids from their classes (who had not been vaccinated) were sick with fever, covered in spots, and even throwing up. Mine were begging to go to school.

Kate (Kiss My Frog) said...

We have just finished with two separate bouts of "Chicken Box". My 3yo came down with it three weeks ago, the week before Easter. We kept 7yo home from school for the last week of term, expecting him to get spotty any minute, and because they are contagious during the incubation period (approx. 7-10 days). So we waited.
Morning and night we checked for spots on 7yo. Alabaster. And we waited. I started bathing them together, and coming up with games that required them to be right up close together (I didn't make anybody lick anybody else, but I thought about it) And finally, a full 13 days after 3yo came out spotty, I threw up my hands in disgust, said "Fine, he's NEVER going to catch the stinkin' chicken pox! We're going shopping tomorrow!" Next morning? COVERED IN THEM!!!
Just keep them from running around and getting all hot and sweaty. Cool baths, calamine lotion. And if they are really scratching at themselves, antihistamine.
We survived. You will too.