Tag Archives: Swine Flu

Cabin Fever

My kid is on his second day home from school, thanks to a slight fever that renders him banned from school, but still well enough to not be sick.  It appears that I dodged the Swine Flu this time…..  But nevertheless, he still needed to stay home.  I have been sitting with him all day while he does his homework, making sure that he doesn’t sneak outside to play with his friends and give them the flu. We have spent a lot of time together today, just him and me. And there is only one sentiment that can truly describe today.

I’m going crazy!

It was a beautiful day outside, and I was stuck inside with a not sick, barely feverish kid who really needed to be running around but was stuck inside with me. Do you have any idea how hard it is to get any work done when you have a bored 8 year old hounding you about every little thing?

Son: “Mom, am I allowed to get my $5 allowance?”

WC Mom: “No. Now be quiet and do your homework. I need to finish what I’m writing.”

Son: “Ok.”

2 minutes later.

Son: “Mom, is Big Apfel a real person?”

WC Mom: “I don’t know. Why?”

Son: “He’s on my video games, and just has a cool name. Don’t you think he has a cool name?”

WC Mom: “Sure. Please do your homework.”

Pause for a bathroom break. When I return, he’s missing. I go back to writing instead of searching for him.

Son: “Mom! Guess what? Big Apfel IS a real person!”

WC Mom: “How do you know?”

Son: “I Googled it.”

WC Mom: “You’re supposed to be reading, not playing on the computer.”

Son: “But I was reading. I was reading about Big Apfel.”

WC Mom: “Doesn’t count. Turn off the computer and get out your reading book.”

Son: “Ok.”

1 minute later.

Son: “Mom?”

WC Mom: “What?!”

Son: “Can I have my $5 allowance?”

And so it went…..

Yesterday, my not sick kid with a slight fever started to raid his candy bag from Halloween.

WC Mom: “Get out of there. Sick kids are not supposed to eat candy.”
(sidenote: This is one of those facts that are passed down from our mothers that we infringe on our own children. Why can’t you eat candy when you are sick? I have no idea. I mean, it’s not like you’re going to get a worse fever from a bunch of M&M’s. But still, we feel like we would be bad parents NOT to keep the junk food away when they are sick.)

Son: “I have to have one.”

WC MOM: “You do not.”

Son: “Yes I do. My blood sugar is low. I need candy to get my blood sugar regular.”

I still didn’t give him the candy, though you’ve got to hand it to the kid for thinking on his feet.

While I’m stir crazy, I have to admit that it’s also been kind of nice to spend some one on one time with my son. We ate lunch together, and he gave me a hug in apology when he decided he wasn’t a fan of Thai Ginger. He read me some of his story that he was reading for class. We worked on his homework together. And because he wasn’t competing against his sister, he was mellow and calm for the whole entire day.

Still, I am more than ready for him to go back to school, especially since he has asked for his $5 allowance three more times while I was writing this. My hat is off to you stay-at-home moms with little munchkins under your feet all day long.


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When Swine Flu enters the home

My son has a fever, as well as a headache, a sore throat, and a small cough. A year ago, that would be no big deal. Give him plenty of fluids, make sure he rests, and then send him back to school once he is feeling better. He’s not even acting too sick right now. Besides being quiet, he is perfectly content relaxing in front of the TV with his video games, taking full advantage of extending his weekend by a day or two. The fever is low, going back and forth between 99 and 100 degrees. So if this were last year, I wouldn’t be concerned at all.

But this year it’s different. With the Swine Flu on the rise, a small fever is still very alarming. The thoughts race through my head – What if it gets worse? What if this really is Swine Flu? Who did he catch it from? Do I contact anyone he was around yesterday to let them know that my son has a fever? Should I put a sign on my door to let kids know that he can’t play, and that they should keep away from the house like we have the plague? How long will he be out of school? What if his sister gets it? What if it runs through the whole family, keeping me out of work for a long period of time? Do I have enough sick time stocked up if I need to stay out of work?

And then there’s another thought – what if I get sick?

On an airplane, one of the first instructions in safety is that in case of an emergency, put your breathing mask on first before you tend to your child. It’s our natural reaction to want to save our children before ourselves to be sure that they are taken care of and out of harm’s way. But if we are suffocating and going to pass out, not only are we hurting ourselves, we are hurting our children. If I get Swine Flu, who will take care of my kids? Who will drive them to school, help them with their homework, make their dinner, or get them ready for bed? And if we all are sick, how will I make sure that they have everything they need? As a single mom, this is all a definite concern. There is no other adult here to take over. If I go down, the whole household stands still.

Swine Flu has hit both of my kids’ schools.  Several people from work have been out for over a week with it.  One of my friends had a sore throat followed by a headache, and then she was knocked off her feet with a fever.  Now that she’s better, her son has it.  According to an article by Martin Espinoza in June, 98% of all flu cases at the time were considered Swine Flu.  If that was June, and we are in flu season now, what does that mean for the population now?  As a parent, it’s hard for my head NOT to swim with the dangers and fears over the Swine Flu.

KidsHealth.org has some great information about the Swine Flu. According to them, kids have been affected more prominently from the Swine Flu than any other strain of flu. But they follow that up to state that the symptoms are usually mild, so it’s unnecessary to panic. The symptoms of Swine Flu are fever, cough, sore throat, runny nose, body aches, headaches, and tiredness. Diarrhea or vomiting might occur as well.  My friend’s son has had a fever for two days.  But other than that, he seems like he is fairly healthy. 

What if you or your child comes down with the Swine Flu? From what I gather, hospitals are not going to admit just anyone who has contracted the Swine Flu unless the situation is dire. Think about it, if they gather everyone with the virus in a place full of already sick people, a lot more people are going to contract it and could die. So doctors are urging the public to stay home and treat this like any other flu virus – lots of fluids and lots of rest. To help against spreading the disease, cough or sneeze into a tissue, and wash your hands as often as possible.

And just as important as protecting yourself against the virus, it’s good to communicate with extended family and close friends in case the worst happens. I had a talk with my parents several weeks ago about a Plan B in case I was to get sick. We came to an agreement that if the kids were healthy, they would stay with them while I got better. Just knowing that there is a back-up plan puts some relief in me.

For now, however, I’m just going to focus on getting my little guy better. And get him off the video games so he can rest.