Tuesday, July 21, 2015

My 2 Year Old Son Got the Herpes ... Sort of.

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This last weekend takes the cake as far as the worst days of 2015 are concerned. Unless you count two months back when my son had this cough that was so bad it made a Sunday afternoon with my 101 year old great-granny and her 10 year old chocolate bars seem pretty appealing by comparison.
Thursday night hit our house with all the darkness of a Tim Burton film. My usually bubbly little toddler-man child hit bottom at dinner time when he refused one of his favourite meals, spaghetti bolognese. It was the cream of the crop as far as bolognese sauce goes too because it came from the 78 year old Italian neighbour who grinds his own meat for the sauce. I don't know what kind of magic he uses but it must have something to do with sticky tape. Which I found a piece of when I was heating the pot for dinner. Totally normal, right? I can't judge because his sauce still tastes better than mine. All I want to know is this: was it generic tape or the good Scotch stuff?
Here comes the HERPES!!!!! Ahhhhhhh!
The next morning my son completely refused his breakfast too. He started the day with a temperature of 38C and by lunch time it had climbed to 39C ( - which is 102.2F for the American's reading. You're welcome). My mother in-law had come around for a visit. She is pretty much his favourite person outside our immediate family unit but not even she could get him to be his busy bubbly self, or get him to eat.
Dave came home in time for dinner and we offered Charlie another favourite meal. I got a quick peek at his tongue as he tried to taste what was on offer. I grabbed my phone and snapped a picture while he was willing to stick it out for me. He had huge ulcers on his tongue, and on the roof of his mouth as well. No wonder the kid hadn't eaten all day.
Exactly how Charlie sees me every time I've tried to feed him the last 5 days
My husband left, after my son went to bed, for a work function. I waited for Dr to Your Door to arrive and in the meantime kept trying to help my son fall back to sleep when he'd wake-up in agony. A lovely GP friend of mine, Phoebe, had suggested I ask the Doctor if it could be the Herpes Simplex virus - Type 1 (cold sore-virus). It seemed to be the most likely cause of the ulcers when the Dr could not find any rash or blisters on my son's hands and feet to suggest Hand Foot and Mouth Disease as the other likely culprit. He looked really puzzled about the whole thing, and made it quite obvious he'd never seen anything like this in a 2 year old. After a lot of thought and consideration he decided to prescribe an adult tablet (the only option) for my son to take 5 times a day, dispersed in 50ml of water each time. I just looked at him like "You've got to be freaking kidding me, right?" I asked how it would be possible to get my son to drink that amount of fluid when he was currently refusing his favourite drinks as it was. He could not offer a solution.
I called the only Pharmacy (7 minutes away) that was open until 12pm. They told me they didn't carry the dispersible tablet for the anti-virus medication. My husband came home, and then I drove to another pharmacist 3 times the distance. I arrived home at 11.30pm and woke my son up. We tried to give him the medication and he threw up twice. Along with the medication came up the watermelon and ice block, the only two things he'd eaten for dinner. I felt immense pressure to get this medication into my son after speaking to a Doctor and 3 pharmacists that night about the importance of him getting that first dose in ASAP. There was nothing more we could do until morning but try and get him to sleep

As soon as morning came we were off to the Emergency Department. My son was still not eating, and would barely drink a thing. The medical staff also seemed stumped on the diagnoses for him. They checked him for Hand Foot and Mouth too, and decided it must be the Herpes virus as they'd never seen ulcers like this on a child so young. After the painful fight of administering the $110 numbing gel all over his mouth he finally was willing to eat a fruit salad cup. I swear we felt like the biggest winners getting that first piece of fruit into his mouth, and my husband was able to sneak the tablet into the fruit, bit by bit.

Family portrait of us begging God to make it stop!
By evening though, my son was back to refusing any food, even with the numbing gel they'd sent us home with. I was in tears. We tried everything to get him to take the medication. We spent all day just administering liquids in syringes to a screaming toddler. I finally went to the fridge and just stared into it, crying my heart out and feeling at a total loss. WATERMELON!!!! I grabbed the watermelon and cut a piece into our blender. I mixed a tablet with some water and dumped it into the watermelon juice. He drank it. Another fracking WIN!!! Both Dave and I were so exhausted by this point and were dreading another night of a waking baby. Our son just writhes in his bed half awake, back and forth and up and down goes his little bottom so that he looks as though he's preparing to somersault in his cot.
Day 4 of my son's juice diet: He's looking so much skinnier already. He'll be walking catwalks in no time.
He still hasn't eaten anything since Thursday night (except those fruit cups) so we just keep blending low-acidic fruit, and syringe feed him all day. And he's now come up with a few blisters on his hand's and feet which probably changes his diagnoses from Herpes - Type 1 to Hand Foot and Mouth. Trust my child to make a Doctor say "this is the most unusual presentation of Hand Foot Mouth I've ever seen." We won't know until the results come in tomorrow morning on his swab if it's official. Until then we feel like we will just keep getting by.
After all this, you can imagine how freaking incredible it was to have my GP friend, Phoebe, turn up last night with a big casserole dish full of the most delicious eggplant lasagne ever! Pasta for another WIN! YES! The dread of creating and making dinner, and then doing dishes was just too much for me. And there's enough left overs to last us for dinner again tonight. These are the kind of friends the world needs more of, am I right ladies? I used to think it was just women in churches who did this for each other. A good home cooked meal is sometimes the best gift you can give someone suffering with a sick child, or settling in with a new bubba. My "village" of mamas also did their bit to cheer me up on Saturday night by taking me out of the house for a couple hours before I completely lost my mind.

I am so grateful for the magic of makeup that covers up how haggard I feel.
There are women out there like this, ladies. I know it's not always easy finding friends who care this much, and you may have seen me drop the Hello Mama's name before; their site matches you with other mama's with similar interests and needs and this certainly cuts down on meeting the friend's who just end up being selfish, disinterested women, who only want your friendship for what they can get from you. Sure I want Lasagne from you, but I'm totally willing to give out Lasagne too. Know what I'm saying? Find the women out there who will have your back when the Tim Burton storm rolls through ...





*This isn't a sponsored post I just love what they do for mamas!

30 comments:

  1. YES! My daughter was the same- it was the first exposure to the herpes virus- her gums even swelled. The doctor thought I was crazy, especially when I told him I'd looked it up online (I know- google doctoring, right?) but I had had a cold sore and she'd sneaked a few kisses. He and one other doctor had never heard of what the first exposure can present like in a child. Hope your little guy is well and truly on the mend- it took a few days!

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  2. Oh poor little man! It's so awful to see them sick, it makes me feel so useless. I hope things improve soon xx

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  3. I really hate HFM, I've had it as a kid, but it REALLY sucks to get as an adult!!!

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  4. Poor little guy! There is nothing worse because you know you can't really do much to help them and their pain.
    Hope he feeling better!

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  5. Oh gosh the poor little thing. Coincidentally a friend of mine had her little girl (almost two) admitted to hospital last week diagnosed with the same thing. They ended up having to a nasal gastric tube in to get something into her.

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  6. Oh that sounds like the most terrible of times. Hope it is all getting a bit better now.


    Leaving some fairy wishes and butterfly kisses from #teamIBOT

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  7. Yes! You poor thing. My 2yo had this last year, it was just awful:(

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  8. Oh, that sounds just awful Jess. I'm so sorry you've been dealing with this. Hope he's back to his normal self soon. It's awful seeing them so ill!

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  9. Bloody hell Jess, that sounds awful! Your poor little guy. There is nothing worse than seeing them so limp and lethargic that they refuse to eat or drink. The relief when they will actually have something is like nothing else. Hopefully this is it for you guys this winter, and you can sail through the rest of it unscathed. x

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  10. Oh, I was so with you reading this! When my kids are sick - and especially when they were really little - I quietly freak out. I'm not particularly calm or rational. By comparison, I think you've handled it well - not to mention the sticky tape incident. No-one was expecting that!


    Hope little man is on the mend soon. xx

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  11. Awww I hope your little one is better soon, it's heartbreaking when a child is unwell. Sticky tape in the pasta sauce, sounds like something my Great Grandad would have done ☺️

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  12. Damn Jess. I'm so sorry. This sounds heart wrenching, frustrating and exhausting. Poor chalice bear. I hope things heal right up quickly. Wish I was there to give you a crock pot of chili.

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  13. @HandbagMafia Amy, did you write about this? I feel like I've heard you mention it before. The swab came back last night as negative for herpes. You wouldn't even know he has HFM because he only had a couple sores on each limb and a light rash that went in 48 hours. He looks totally fine now. What a weirdo. Thanks for the well wishes.

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  14. @Mumma McD Thank you! Today we are officially back to normal. WOOOO HOOOO!!!!! I'm all "Get me out of this house and let's party."

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  15. @Fiona I don't even remember ever having it. Just chicken pox and a few other creepy things you get from living in a third world country for your childhood. Yikes.

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  16. @Kell @ All Mum Said We're all good today. He even ate all his lunch and didn't want help. I'm free. haha.

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  17. @Lauren @ Create Bake Make I was about to start begging for it. How awful. You know you've hit rock bottom when you need the feeding tube, eh. Hope she's alright now?

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  18. @AParentingLife We are doing really well today. YAY!! Thanks.

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  19. I avoided chicken pox until I was 16.... was doing mid-year HSC maths exam and realised I had blisters.....

    Also got nits that year

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  20. @Bec @ Seeing the Lighter Side was it really severe. Did you have to syringe feed?

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  21. @EssentiallyJess It's been horrible. I got Dave to be on nap-watch so I could try and write this because there were so many interruptions. Blog-wife. haha! Thank you!

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  22. Yeah, it's terribly to see them zapped. Usually when he's sick he's still playing pretty well. But this time he just wanted Chitty Bang, and to lay on the lounge all day with me. I usually enjoy winter but not this year. FUCK you WINTER!

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  23. @Angie@TheLittleMumma I'm glad the sticky tape wasn't a bandaid. EWWW! I did wonder what the tape would have come off of? WHAT? I totally freak. I try to be all calm to begin with but then things get the better of me. I'm kicking myself for not looking in his mouth sooner. I should have a checklist. Mouth, forehead, fever, ears, and body check, along with nappy-watching (fluids?).

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  24. @Dani @ Several Kinds of Crazy I hope I catch his adult daughter over the fence when she visits. I know she'd love that story. He is such a lovely man. Always plays peek-a-boo over the fence with me.... I mean Charlie. haha

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  25. Thank you, sister dearest. Can Chalice officially be his knew nick name from Aunty O?
    Also, I can't stop thinking about your Chili and a bag of fritos now. Thanks a lot. haha

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  26. He was still taking a bottle so we managed to get liquid into him that way. Managed to avoid hospital. Though he gave it to my Mum, who got it really badly and ended up in hospital for a week:(

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  27. Natalie @ Our Parallel ConnectJuly 24, 2015 at 6:29 PM

    It's always so horrible when your child is sick, no matter what age they are... Our mothering instincts are just too strong and take over too often... Btw you look gorgeous

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  28. Oh you poor thing, both you and your son (and your husband!). Really sick children is never a fun thing. Hope he is on the mend and yay for awesome friends!

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  29. @Haidee He's back to himself. Even threw some epic tantrums in public today just to show-off how well he is. haha! Thank you!

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  30. @Natalie @ Our Parallel Connect Awww Thanks! That's exactly what this tired mum needs to hear. I am aching for some more me-time right now.
    Can't you lie and tell me it gets easier as they get older. hahaha

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